On Friday September 8, my family and I left for our family vacation in Virginia Beach. So, I had three days to recover from jet lag and then we headed off on vacation together! Friday we ended up leaving much later then we thought we would leave (we left at 9pm). Friday and Saturday was considered our "driving days" to get to our vacation destination spot. Unfortunately I had a stomach ache almost the whole time we drove down to Virginia Beach, which is an 18 hour drive.
For those of you who don’t know where Virginia Beach is, it is on the east coast of the States and it is a pretty tourist area. When we drove there from Whitby, we crossed the Kingston boarder and then headed through the Eastern coast states: New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia and then finally Virginia Beach which is on the coast of Virginia state. We stayed at Holiday Trav-l-park campground. When we arrived on Saturday early evening we set up our campsite by putting up our tent trailer and dining tent and settled in.
Sunday (Sept 10), was our first full day in Virginia Beach and we had a very good day. Around 11am we headed out to NAS (Naval Air Station) military base and we enjoyed the free air show they put on for the public to watch. They put on quite a show for us! We saw different jets like the stealth fighter jet, rocket aerobatics, the shockwave jet truck, the U.S. army special operations command black daggers and the U.S. Navy Blue Angels. I really enjoyed watching the air show. It was neat watching all the tricks the jets can do and how fast they can fly. During the week we often saw the military jets flew over us at our campsite or at the beach because the pilots need to train and keep up their hours. The military base is huge in Virginia State with the Navy (the ships) and the jets. Oh, and I ended up getting sun burned on my face and I wasn’t even at the beach!
Monday (Sept 11), was our first day going to the beach. I didn’t go swimming because the air temperature was cool. In fact it was so cool outside that my parents and I bought hoodies! My brother Jonathan did go to the beach and went skimmer boarding along the shore. We went biking on the bike path along the shore, I enjoyed that but the wind was so strong that it made biking a little bit difficult. In the evening we went to the movie theater and saw a movie. We watched "The World Trade Centre" movie which was about the 9-11 event in 2001. Today is the five year anniversary of 9-11, when America was attacked by terrorist. It’s a horrible event that has happened and I really don’t understand why people would do that to innocent people. The movie was very well done and yet it was very intense and difficult to watch. At the end of the move they told us how many people died, and other numbers.
The movie reminded me how important obedience to God is. God spoke to one man who went to church about going to New York city where the attack was (now ground zero). God told this man to go there and help the people there. The pastor of the church thought he was crazy but he wanted to be obedient to God and he went. He used to serve in the U.S. military, in the marines which helped him get onto the site. If it wasn’t for him then two of the police officers in the movie wouldn’t have been saved. Two police officers in the movie were trapped by all the rubble and they couldn’t get out. That guy who went to help found those two police officers and radioed the police and fire fighters. They were able to pull them both out alive and they saved their lives! A lot of the police, firemen, medical people and the military became heroes from rescuing and saving people lives. I wonder how the church got woken up from this and how this affected people spiritually.
Tuesday (Sept 12), we had a nice relaxing day at our campsite. On Monday my parents noticed something was wrong with our truck so they took it to be looked at and found out thermostat fan crutch was shot. So, today we couldn’t go anywhere because our truck was in the shop all day! Even though we didn’t adventure out of our campsite we still had a good day enjoying being with each other. We went biking around the campsite, went swimming in the pool and in the evening we relaxed by the camp fire.
Wednesday (Sept 13), we enjoyed a day at the beach. Today we had much nicer weather and the wind wasn’t as strong as the other day so we enjoyed biking along the beach. I love hearing the sound of the waves crashing against the shoreline. It is so peaceful and the smell of the water is so clean and fresh. During the evening and the night it rained. I felt a bit disappointed that we couldn’t have a campfire because of the rain but we had a good time playing skip-bo inside our tent trailer.
Thursday (Sept 14), we went to see this lighthouse on one of the military bases. I couldn’t believe the security there was to get onto the base! Well, I guess they have to be strict with security because we were going onto a military base. The lighthouse was nice and it was a beautiful view from the shore too. In the evening we went mini golfing at Jungle mini golf. We had a great time and I think that was my first time doing so well at mini golfing! I even got three holes in 1!
Friday (Sept 15), we spent the day at Bush Gardens amusement park in Williamsburg. We had a really good time and the weather was great. The best part was kids are in school now so we didn’t have to wait in any line ups! Almost all of the rides we got to walk right now, which was great because we didn’t have to waste any time in line ups! We got to see some shows at the park and there were a couple of animal shows too. My mom and I even got to hold a parrot! Today was also the first day of their Halloween theme, so there was a lot of scary mazes and things to do. People who worked there actually jumped out at you and tried to scare you. I even jumped sometimes! I don’t like Halloween because of the meaning behind it but it was kind of fun to go through the mazes. At one of the stores I met a Romanian guy who works there (my mom told me because I was outside and she knew he was Romanian because all of the workers all written where they are from on their name tags). I spoke to him for a few minutes and it was like my whole body erupted with excitement! I can’t wait until I go back to do full-time missions there!
Saturday (Sept 16), we headed out of Virginia Beach. We spent the morning packing up our campsite and then we headed out around 1:30pm. Tonight we stopped at Maryland State because we were going to spend the day with my mom’s cousin Paul on Sunday. So, we drove all day. On the way to Maryland State we stopped at Chesapeake Bay bridge and to see the view. It is a pretty incredible sight because you actually drive on two bridges and in between the bridges you go under the water twice in tunnels. When you go on the middle bridge you feel like you are on the middle of no where on the water! It’s 17 miles between Virginia beach/Norfolk and Virginia‘s Eastern shore! We finally arrived in Maryland State, just outside of Baltimore around 10pm. We ate dinner at Bennigans restaurant which I was really excited about because I had no idea it was an American restaurant when I ate there in Korea! We spent the night at Holiday Inn and slept in beds again.
Sunday (Sept 17), we spent the day with my mom’s cousin Paul and his wife Helen. We haven’t seen them in a really long time, so it was great to see them again! We had a great day together. We went to a buffet style restaurant for breakfast and then spent the afternoon at the capital of Maryland – Annapolis. We spent the afternoon at the harbor there. It was nice to look around to see the boats and the stores. We went on a small boat ride to take us around the harbor. We spent the rest of the day at their house. We saw their son Jeffery and his daughter there was well. Before we said good-bye we prayed for each other and then said our good-byes. Before we drove off the neighbors told us some side swiped our truck. I was so angry that someone would do that and on our vacation too!
We spent all night Sunday driving home and we arrived home on Monday afternoon. On the way home we stopped at the bridge where thousand islands is. Jonathan and I went up the lookout tower. It was so beautiful! Overall we had a great vacation even though it rained and we had things that happened to our truck. It was perfect timing to go on vacation with my family right after I got back from being away from home for a year in Korea. I even got to eat some dishes my mom made that I haven’t had for a long time like steak, pork chops and pork ribs. I also enjoyed having BBQ everyday too! I missed that, this summer!