SAI International School students participated in a 13 day trip to USA from May 27 – June 8, 2018. Visiting San Francisco, Cupertino, Yosemite National Park and Los Angeles. Please find below all the details of the trip from the students themselves. This was a complete California Adventure that included Cable Cars, The Golden Gate Bridge, Google, Facebook, Pier 39, Sutro Bathes, Cupertino Mayor’s Office, The Griffith Observatory, Hollywood Walk of Fame, Disneyland, Universal Studios……and much much more!
Report May 27 & 28 – by Rajnandini & Deeksha
We all met at the airport around 3PM got our bag tags and yellow caps. We spent some time with our parents and Chairman Sir arrived and instructed us about what to do and how to behave during the trip. Then he briefly instructed us about the places we were going to visit in USA. We took many group pics with Chairman Sir. Then we bid goodbye to our parents and Chairman Sir. After taking blessings from our parents we checked in our luggage and boarded the flight to Kolkata. We landed in Kolkata then waited at the airport taking pics,listening to music,talking to friends and playing UNO, we went for immigration and waited for our turn in the long queue. Then we collected our boarding passes and went for dinner and boarded the flight to Hong Kong. After reaching Hong Kong we exchanged currency and had our breakfast at BURGER KING and rested at the airport. After that we all spent our time talking to our parents, friends and our mobile phones.Then again we went for immigration,standing and waiting for our turns in the long queue.After a long flight we finally arrived at San Francisco. After immigration we headed towards the exit of the airport where Jessica ma’am was already there to welcome us.
From there we went to an Indian restaurant for lunch in a bus booked by school.After lunch we checked in to the La Quinta Inn.We freshens and went to sleep for a few hours.Then we went for dinner and then had a group meeting and were asked to go to sleep.
Report May 29 – by Mayurakshi, Kriti and Lavanya
Our day started with an alarm beeping in our ears and phones receiving texts telling us to wake up. We woke,freshened up and went down for breakfast. The breakfast spread was actually quite satisfying. Waffles, scrambled eggs, bread and butter and everything one would like as breakfast. After that, we climbed onto our raspberry bus and went on to our first stop…The Palace Of Fine Arts. It was beautiful. It had Greek and Roman architecture. It totally gave out a British vibe. There were gargoyles of woman facing towards the palace, which is quite surprising cuz it’s usually the opposite. We debated quite a lot on it. After our intense discussion of woman gargoyles, we had a photo shoot.
The next stop was the golden gate bridge. It was freezing out there. The moment we reached there all of our hands and face were numb. We were literally like zombies. Again,we got to know about the bridge and what it is made up of, its history and everything.
After talking we had our lunch in an Indian restaurant, and headed out to catch a cable car. We went inside the cable car workshop. We got to know about the mechanism and the history behind cable cars. Unfortunately to our dismay none of the cars were available and we called our raspberry bus to take us to the Maritime museum. We now know that pirates of the carribeam was for a reason. We then went to the beach nearby. The water was freezing cold and no one would even stand near it. But some local people started swimming. So we build up our couragee to walk and put our feet into the ocean. Guess what…..Bad idea!
After the bone chilling temperature we decided to go to Pier 39 which was walking distance from where we were standing. Turns out….the 12 min walk took an hour to reach. We stopped at every single shop we passed by. Once we reach Pier 39 we saw so many Seals basking in the sun.
The last thing we did was take dinner, where we were last to pick out our own plates. We then came back to the hotel and get the long awaited rest.
Report May 30, 2018 – by Isha and Meeru
And the alarm went off at 6 a.m.
Our day started off with a bang because we were sure, for the first time, where we were heading to. Also we were to put on our traditional clothing so that was a plus.
We got up at 6′ in the morning.( Thanks to Jessica ma’am’s call). We, after that, got ready by 7 am and started for the breakfast downstairs. After having the sumptuous breakfast, we hoped onto our tour bus and started for the Mayor of the Cupertino state’s office. To tell the truth, the views that we got to see outside the window, starting from the country roads to the misty hills, were plain breathtaking.
Next we headed for the Fremont School District. There, we gave our presentation and surely the Assistant Superintendent, Mrs Trudy Gross was pretty impressed. We got to exchange questions about our schooling systems. That was really informative.Then we went to have lunch at an Italian restaurant named Sweet tomatoes. The salads and desserts were truly great.
Our visit to Cupertino was coordinated by the Cupertino Bhubaneswar Sister City Initiative. We are proud to be apart of this programme and look forward to visiting again in October as part of a new student exchange programme. They even posted our visit on their Facebook page.
Now for the limelight event; *drumroll* National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The Ames research centre. The insides left us spellbound and the science enthusiasts who were really low in number *cough* yeah, right * cough* underwent a sudden rush of adrenaline. The interior included information about the past, current and future space missions, soveigners from outer space eg. A Moon rock and basalt from Mars and a soveigner store from where we could bring back with us awesome memories. Sadly, like everything else, our NASA trip had to end too. Though we couldn’t visit the actual research centre the exhibit was superb. It was there that we met we met a Cupertino police officer and boy! was that cool.
Lastly we went for shopping at the Great Mall ( a Simon centre ) where we explored the huge floor for an hour. We gathered up at Starbucks at the end of the hour. Then we had our dinner at a North Indian restaurant and then we headed back to our hotel where we are still trying to sleep.
Report May 31- by Kanishk, Swastik and Devesh
We got a wake up call at around 7 am in the morning. After we got refreshed and ready we headed to have breakfast at hotel lobby after an half an hour of breakfast we sat in the bus and headed towards Stanford University. At Stanford we had a tour of the campus and visited a sacred memorial church erected by Jane Lathrop Stanford to glory of god and in loving memory of her husband Leland Stanford After we were done visiting the church of Stanford University we headed towards our bus and were off to the Google campus.
After we reached the Google campus we met Saveen Sahni who works for Google maps. He gave us a tour of the headquarters and told us a lot many things about Google. He answered all the questions that we asked him about Google.
After we were done at the Google headquarters we headed towards an Italian restaurant ‘Pizza my heart’ and ate Italian pizza. After having our lunch we went to our bus and Headed towards Facebook . After we reached there we took a lot of photos in front of a like (thumb) sign After our tour ended we headed towards Mr Patnaik’s house and spent time there and he even hosted us for dinner at an Italian restaurant named Maggiao’s.
After all these we were all drowsy and headed back towards hotel for sleep.
Report June 1 – by Meeru and Isha
The day started off with the alarm, in our ears, buzzing off at 7 in the morning (we couldn’t be late today). Today we were heading to the University of California, Berkley and the California Academy of Science. So we got ourselves ready by 8 a.m., devoured the complimentary breakfast downstairs in the hotel and started for the University of California, Berkeley (that’s the University of Berkeley by the way, encase you were wondering). We started at 9:25 AM, sharp. There we were warmly welcomed by Mr. Tim who inspired and motivated us (he’s a really funny man). He also answered our questions about college admissions in the US.
Next we met our tour guide of the day, Elsa, a political science major at the UC Berkeley. There, we were shown the whole campus and by God, it was astonishing. There were different buildings for every department where the students attend lectures. The greenery, the infrastructure, the campus beliefs, the libraries and the legacy of the college were all really cool. The best part? There are in total 16 elements in the periodic table that were discovered in the very campus of the college. Eg. Berkelium (get it?) , Californium (very patriotic people), Seaborgium (named after professor Seaborg who discovered it. Another interesting fact about him is that his name can be arranged to form the anecdote of ‘ Go Bears’ which is basically the college’s Moto).
Next we were headed to the Round tables pizza for lunch. (We had to travel to the city for that). After having our lunch, we headed to the California university of sciences. But we had only a few minutes before the academy closed so instead we did a detour and went to the Sutro Baths. First some of us were really disappointed because we didn’t get to go to the Science academy but that all changed the moment we saw the beach.
The glistening blue colour of the water, the fine sandy soil, the distant view of the islands and the high rocky cliffs created a paradise on Earth. All of us really enjoyed the sea. Also some of us climbed the cliffs and felt somewhat like explorers in a lost jungle( a.k.a Spiderman to be specific) and after all that we had to return to our rooms in our hotels where all, as soon as they entered their rooms, slept off.
Report June 2- by Rajnandini and Deeksha
Our day started with alarm buzzing in our ears at 6 am. We all got up and freshen up and had our breakfast at La Quinta, San Francisco. Then we started our journey towards Yosemite National Park. It took 4hrs to reach our destination.
Soon after that we were welcomed by our guide of the day, Mr. Ira (a.k.a the bear man). He was really amusing and he provided us with tons of information about the national park (with a horror warning about a written test at the end of the trip).
Mr. Bear Man even showed us different types of agates and stones found locally even gold. He took some time to explain the difference between gold and fools gold.
The journey actually started when we bought our tickets. Our bus started into the woods and to swear that it wasn’t a heaven on Earth would be wrong on our side. The lush greenery, the tall redwoods, the sun dawned hills, the fierce waterfalls, the steep and black rocks on in there would have made even the most materialistic person fall in love with it.
Some of the students from our trip who were really cool adventurers, started climbing the hills like mountain goats. The waterfall was truly heavenly. It was splendid scene, nature at its best.
But sadly we had to return from there. But this was a trip which would be indelibly printed in our mind. While on our way back, we picked up some pizzas from the round table pizza and checked into the comfort inn where we had our dinner and slumped into our beds and went into deep sleep at that moment. Also that written test? We didn’t have to take it. That was just a joke from our guide’s side.
Report June 3 – by Lavanya, Kriti and Mayurakshi
LA without a doubt was the most awaited part of our trip. Today in the morning we woke with smiles on our faces (rare as we aren’t morning people!). Even the 5 hour drive on the bus couldn’t bring our spirits down. 5 hours went by in a blur. Chatting, blaring music and rolling off seats. We ate our lunch at Johnny Rockets and headed out for a city tour. First stop was La Brea Tar Pits which had been there since prehistoric times. La Brea in Latin means tar.
We saw the unique architecture of the Disney Concert Hall which was initiated by Walt Disney’s wife, Lillian. The metal sheets were in layers on top of the other creating a rippling effect. Our guide told us that if you used the metal there would be enough to build a bridge from LA to New York and there would still be enough to build a skyscraper.
Next we stopped at the Dolby Center, where the Academy Awards are held every year. All celebrities invited to the academy awards are necessary to take only one guest with them. No matter how important they may be. After that we went in front of the Chinese Theatre. There were a lot of people walking around in costumes of famous characters like Superman, Catwoman, Harley Quinn, etc… They looked exactly like the real characters. Then we walked through the Walk of Fame. There were people like Emma Stone, Emma Daniel Radcliff, etc. it was awesome. We clicked loads of snaps . we then headed back to our bus. We went to an Indian restaurant for dinner. We had Indian food after three days. At this point we were all really tired and done for the day. We had a silent bus ride to our hotel.
Report June 4 -by Ankita, Saniya and Akshita
This morning we woke up fully excited as today we were going to…………… Disneyland. So, we got all dressed up ,had our breakfast and then we headed towards the bus to go to Disneyland. We were all super excited to reach the place we were all seeing dreams of in our childhood. When we reached we were awestruck and were having the time of our lives after seeing the beautiful Disneyland and it’s rides and a lot of fun waiting for us…!!!!. We were taking photos of ourselves with the banner when the security took our banner and seized it due to security reasons. We then entered Disneyland and first saw the avengers namely:Loki, Groot and Captain America!!!!!!!. Our first ride was…. The Guardians of the Galaxy:Breakout. It was heart throbbing and fascinating and fabulous!!. Then we went to the Cars Park where we waited in a long queue to go to the Radiators spring race. We really enjoyed ourselves. Then we went to the Golden Zephyr where we flew in the sky in a boat 😜.We all then went to the symphony strings ride.Then we went to a ride which connected us to the nature that is the Grizzly River Run !!!!. We did some serious rafting it was so fun!.We then had some tasty Mickey Mouse ice cream and snacks it was such a delight!!.Then we went on a cars ride which was fun as well!!!.And sadly,after that we had to leave Disneyland but still the memories we had and the Mickey Mouse headband we bought can never fade.
WE WISH THESE MOMENTS LAST FOREVER !!!!!
Report June 5 – by Saniya, Ankita and Aksita
Today we woke up early in the morning, got freshened up and were excited as we were going for shopping as well as astronomy center ! we then, had our breakfast. We were all geared up to go to the Astronomy center, it is actually interesting as our principal teaches astronomy so we would get to know more about his subject. So, we headed towards the center in our bus.In between we stopped at a store where we did chocolate shopping which was so fun as we found a wide variety of chocolates we don’t get in India.We then headed towards the Astronomy observation center. Then we reached the center it’s called Griffith observatory. Where the Hollywood sign was clearly visible we took photos there as well.
We then went for a small presentation on the observatory. We got to know that it was started on May 14,1935 by Griffith J. Griffith. He was a space enthusiast who was fascinated by space researches. After that we took a picture with Einstein’s statue.We then observed various planets, our weights on different planets and various other fun things. It was really fun to see and understand more about the space and planets in our solar system……
Then we went to the other part of our day that is….. The Mall!!! Yaaayyy!!.We went to subway for our lunch it was such a delight!. We then headed toward the mall in our bus.We then went to the mall where there were many shops we bought many things and enjoyed alot. 😊😊
Report June 6 – by Swastik , Kanishk and Devesh
Today we woke up at 7 am as usual and were ready till 8:30 and were off to breakfast after that we were ready for the last day of our tour to USA . At 9:30 am we assembled in the lobby of the hotel and left for UNIVERSAL STUDIOS HOLLYWOOD. After reaching we were separated in groups and completed all the rides in upper lot. At 2:30 pm we had our lunch in MEL’S DINNER . At around 3pm we finished our lunch and were separated again .After that we completed all the rides in lower lot.At around 6:30 pm we assembled near entrance and left for dinner to Indian restaurant around 7 pm . By 8 pm we left for the hotel and packed our luggage and by 10 pm we went to sleep.
Memories that will last a lifetime
San Francisco to Cupertino to Yosemite National Park
and finally Los Angeles
We can not wait for the next adventure
LEARN + EXPLORE = GROW