Road Trip Part II

Panera’s coffee can work wonders on a tired body. We sat for two hours drinking and planning our trip home. Seacrest Wolf Preserve is in Washington County, Florida and I have always wanted to go see their wolves. I called from Panera to see if they had any tours in the next two days. A kind man returned my call and we talked for twenty minutes about their wolves and all their programs open to the public. He suggested we make the trip in the fall when it’s cooler. I decided to take his advice. We left Greensboro around one and made it all the way to Jacksonville by dark.

Here is a word of advice if you use Priceline to book your hotel rooms. Always check the date of arrival. It seems as though my mind was still a bit foggy when I booked our room in Jacksonville. I entered the wrong date. So when we arrived and I thought my hotel nightmares were behind me- I heard “I know why I can’t find your name-you’re booked for tomorrow.” At that point, after driving for seven hours, I wanted to cry. Fortunately, the woman took pity on us, changed the check in date and gave us a beautiful room with a swiveling flat screen TV. We sat, ate our bean burritos and watched Will Smith.

I don’t think my daughter will ever panic when she drives somewhere and gets lost. She is used to me always getting lost. For me, I think it all began when I was seventeen and on a People to People trip in London. I was the only one from my high school traveling with other students I didn’t know well. I took the underground to Piccadilly Circus with a group of girls. While shopping, a painting of Bob Marley caught my eye. I stopped. They didn’t. I was lost in London. I didn’t have the full name of my hotel or a phone number. All I knew was that my hotel had the name Elizabeth in it. I think I laughed, knew I would be okay, shopped and then found a taxi driver and asked him about hotels with the name Elizabeth. He called me a naughty girl for not having the address with me and then took me to the right hotel.

Of course I got lost while trying to find our first college tour. I stood outside squinting trying to read the street sign to the admissions lady on the phone, turn around and see my daughter’s already talking to a young man. Oh no-that was quick. Seems we were in front of a bus stop. He had finished with a theatre audition and his car wouldn’t start. He knew where the admissions office was. I knew I could take him if he tried anything funny. We piled in my car and he showed us where to go. I grilled him on his grade point average and declared major on the way. He was probably wishing he would have waited for the bus.

Both college tours were invaluable. Here is some helpful information about UF and FSU admissions:

1.FSU- 3.6-4.2 GPA /1730-1960 SAT/ 26-30 ACT

2.UF- recommends 4.2- 4.4/ SAT 1930 – 2060/ACT 29-31/ Have at least 20 total academic classes-

3. Take as many AP, IB and ACADEMIC Dual Enrollment classes as possible
4. (Very Important) Senior year: Take a lot of academic coursework- AP and academic Dual Enrollment- Do not let senioritis hit-continue to work hard- One of the colleges said 400 students who were originally accepted were turned away because of bad senior year grades- (college acceptance is tentative until the final transcript is received)

5. College essay should be all about what makes the student unique- It’s the personal interview on paper

6. Be very detailed on the application- If you work, list the hours- volunteer work-be specific- They want to know what students do when they’re not in school.

7. List all accomplishments, awards- Do not simply put Football 9-12 grade/ List things that make student unique

8. FSU gave us a list of bonus points applicants receive if they already have the basic requirements- The following will help give students the extra advantage to acceptance:
-Top 10% of your high school class-senior schedule has at least 5 core academic classes-9-11 grades have AP, IB and honors classes-9-12 they count how many AP, Honors and Dual Enrollment classes- 4 years of a foreign language- take calculus-1st generation college student-have a parent who attended FSU

Yesterday, my daughter told me she’s ready for college. Students were posting pictures of their decorated dorms on Facebook. While I’m not ready for her to go to college, I’m glad she’s excited. I can’t wait for our next tour. As for the Mountain Dew saving my life, well, I agree with the vendor I met at the rest stop- there’s a reason Mountain Dew is the best seller- 56 grams of caffeine! We made it home safe and sound.



1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Anonymous
    Aug 22, 2009 @ 13:34:12

    56 Grams?
    Lightweight! Love ya


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The Picture Book Review

Reviews of Children's Board Books, Picture Books, Activity Books, and Graphic Novels

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