My trip to the United States of America

We left our home at 2 o’clock am, Saturday October 22. We were going to
California,
USA, for two weeks and we were very excited. We traveled down to
Copenhagen by car and then we switched to an airplane. The first flight took two hours and had its destination in
London. At the Heathrow airport we changed flight to a bigger airplane. This flight was going to take about eleven hours and thus we were served both drink and food along the way. We also had the possibility to watch a movie on the small flat TV-screens in front of each seat or listen to the radio. On this flight all passengers had various alternatives to amuse themselves. We were very tired when we arrived in
Los Angeles, mainly because of the nine hours difference in time. Thus we went to bed very early the first evening. 

Day one

We spent our first day in
Los Angeles at
Disneyland theme park. Nowadays Disney theme parks are also found in
Orlando, Florida, and in
Paris, France. However the theme park in
Anaheim near
Los Angeles is the oldest. Frank Web, a friend of our family, and his daughter Zoë, five years old, joined us, so I had a great opportunity to practice my English. They live not far from
Los Angeles and visit the park frequently. Little Zoë was kind and guided us around, telling us what was fun or not. We won a special fast pass when we entered the theme park early in the morning. We did not need to queue at all that day since such a pass gives the holder the possibility to go directly to each ride in the park without having to stand in line. When we were visiting Mickey Mouse House in the end of the day we met Mickey Mouse himself. 

Day two

Many famous movies are made at the Universal Studios in
Hollywood. It is possible to visit a theme park they have built for tourists and look at how movies are made. We learned how special effects like sound and weather are created. A “train on wheels” took us through the park and we had the possibility to look some studios where movie makers had built small cities for various movies. In fact, I even recognized a house from a movie I have seen. The park also contained several roller coasters and different shows in the park. My favorite roller coaster was “the revenge of the mummy”. 

 

Day three

There are many cars in
Los Angeles and the highways have sometimes as much as eight lanes. In spite of that they have a lot of traffic congestions, which are causing a lot of air pollution and thus may lead to an acceleration of the greenhouse effect. The Americans have made a special so called car pool lane for cars with two or more passengers in order to motivate people to team up and go together to and from work every day. Still, when we drove to
San Diego, were we almost alone in the car pool lane.In
San Diego we visited Sea World. We saw both usual and unusual animals and we also watched some shows with killer whales, dolphins and sea lions. 

Day four

About 4 pm the following day (Thursday) we invaded
Las Vegas. It was a beautiful city, especially in the evening. We bought tickets for “Mamma Mia”, the Swedish musical, which is based on the songs of ABBA. The actors were skilful and they all had beautiful voices. We also stopped at a couple of casinos without playing. It was interesting to see all the gambling machines without loosing money! 

Day five

In spite of the late Thursday evening, we decided to wake up early the following morning. We had to get back on the road again! This time we were heading for the
Grand Canyon in
Arizona. We arrived about 3 in the afternoon and spent the rest of the evening there and ate on a restaurant. It is hard to describe my feeling when I stood at an altitude of 2200 meters and looked down in to the
Grand Canyon. I have never seen such amazing thing in my whole life.We also saw many Indians, which is the original population in
America, near the Canyon. 

Day six, seven, eight and nine

It took us four days to drive from the
Grand Canyon, via
Los Angeles, to
San Francisco using the famous coastal road called Route 1. We stopped at a shopping center in
Bullhead City, Arizona, and later the first day we found a hotel in a city called
Upland about an hour from
Los Angeles.Before starting our tour on Route 1, my father showed us the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) where he usually works when he is visiting the
US. JPL is located in
Pasadena about one hour drive north of
Los Angeles. Our next stop was in
Santa Barbara where we had a chance to look at a mission church. We spent our seventh night in the “Danish” town, Solvang, which was even more beautiful than a Danish town in
Denmark. We ate “Smørgaasbord” in a restaurant and bought Danish pastries.We stopped three times the following day, looking at Hearst castle, a beach completely filled with sea elephants and a lovely waterfall that stretched from a cliff into the green-blue ocean.On Tuesday evening when everybody was celebrating Halloween we arrived in
San Francisco.
San Francisco is perhaps the most beautiful city in the
USA. Earlier that day we also visited the harbour in
Monterey which was occupied by sea lions. They were EVERYWHERE. We also went whale watching in the
Pacific Ocean! We saw hunchback whales, dolphins, sea lions and one otter. The whales were fantastic and so graceful in spite of their size.Route 1 was very fun to drive, with the road only a couple of meters from the sea. The nature was wonderful and there were a lot of things to see on the way. 

Day ten, eleven, twelve and thirteen

We stayed in
San Francisco about four days and the first item on our agenda was to visit the old prison
Alcatraz also known as the Rock! At
Alcatraz we got the chance to meet an old prisoner who, now more than 40 years later after his release, was present in the
Alcatraz gift shop in order to sign his new book. Of course we had to buy a signed copy of his book which described his awful years as a prisoner on the

island of
Alcatraz. We also visited the redwood forest in a state park north of the

Golden Gate
Bridge called Muir woods, the
Petrified Forest, a geyser, the famous pier 39 and the harbour. 

We dedicated one full day in the shopping downtown centers. We went to one of the largest shopping center I have ever seen followed by stops in
Chinatown and Japantown. The last thing we did before flying home was to take a walk on the

Golden Gate
Bridge. 

I am always going to remember this amazing trip and I hope from the bottom of my heart that I will have the possibility to return to
California in the future and experience all the beautiful places once more!

Skrivet torsdag 27 september, 2007, av __sandraa

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