Photoblog of RD’s First US Visit

RD’s dream place to go to has always been the United States of America. He’s been dreaming about this ever since he saw pictures in our albums of our 3-year stay there. His wish was always to “follow in his siblings’ footsteps.” Well, years later, we are blessed to have been able to go on a US family trip along with 23 other members of the Roque family. Sad to say, among all of us who went only RD’s three older siblings, who are the eldest of all the grandchildren, were not able to go on account of their ages. RD cried when he first knew that the US consul did not renew their visas, and there were moments he also cried during the trip because he was wishing his Kuyas and Ate were there, but all in all, he had an enjoyable and most memorable trip.

RD has ridden on airplanes a lot but has never been on one that flew internationally. We traveled on an Airbus A-380 and he was awed at how huge the plane was! He was especially thrilled that each passenger had his own tv screen with movies and video games to choose from. He liked the food, especially that they served ice cream for dessert!

Ever since RD knew about our three-year stay in the US and saw our pictures, he’s always had this dream to go there and see the places he saw in the pictures. Of course, some places have changed because that event in our lives happened already thirteen years ago, still, he was so happy to go and see those places for himself. Here’s a hodgepodge of photos between RD’s pictures and that of his siblings from that long-ago time.

RD loves learning. He is a fan of Discovery, National Geographic and History Channels. Having seen pictures of his siblings visiting museums and zoos and seeing these places featured on the tv channels he watches, his most fervent wish has always been to visit museums and “real” zoos. When asked why he added the word “real” he said that zoos here are not complete and sometimes stalls are empty because the occupants have already died, It was a joy to see this wish fulfilled for him.

A bonus to this trip was that RD was also able to visit some theme parks namely, Disney’s Calfornia Adventure Park, Legoland, and Universal Studios.

While there, we also showed RD how we lived while we were there. Having grown up with a nanny and house-help when he was little, we wanted him to learn that not all people have the privilege of hiring people to work for them in the house. We told him that ordinary people in the US do the household chores themselves. One of his comments about that was, “If I lived here, I think I would be veeeery tired!” πŸ™‚ First thing we taught him was how to use a washing machine and also brought him to a laundry mat so he could experience doing laundry by himself.
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Having only ridden a train once in Manila, we rode a train from the suburb, where we staying with a relative, to the John G. Shedd Aquarium in downtown Chicago. He was also able to ride the subway in New York.
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Chicago is a city that’s very close to our hearts because we lived there for three years, so we also went on a short tour of the city… and he tasted crab legs, too! πŸ™‚

Apart from the museums and theme parks, the family packed itself, the whole kit-and-kaboodle, into two 12-seater vans and an SUV and went travelling on the road to visit sites, friends and family. This road trip spanned eight states from L.A. to Illinois then on toward the west coast. There were some “are-we-there-yets” from the smaller kids, but we were so thankful for rest stops along the way, and the humdrum of sitting in a car for hours were all forgotten when we stopped at the different places that were part of our itinerary. Our hats off to our drivers who sometimes drove 6-8 hours to get all of us to where we were supposed to go.

RD, who has already traveled to a lot of places in the Philippines, has dubbed this the “awesomest trip of all!” This is a trip he will never forget for the rest of his life, and we have Grampa and Grama to thank for bringing us all there! RD still wishes to go back and see the places we didn’t get to see, and when that happens, he’s hoping his older siblings get to go with us. Here’s hoping that happens, God willing. In the meantime, we hope you also enjoy the wonderful memories we’ve collected on the trip. Bestest field trip ever!

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