Hello, this is Sarah! My mom told me that I should do a blog post on my CAMS trip, and I eagerly agreed!
For those of you who don’t know, CAMS (California Math and Science) is an optional trip for 8th graders at LC. This year, about 45 eighth graders got on an airplane and flew to the San Francisco area for four days. I had a lot of fun, and talked to more 8th graders then I normally would at school. So, here goes!!
Day One: Waking up at 4:00 am and driving on a school bus with three in a seat from Bellingham to Seattle was definitely not my favorite part of the trip. The plane ride went smoothly. We waited a while for our “Royal Coach”, (our bus) but the bus was definitely worth the wait! The seats leaned back and were super comfy. Our first stop was lunch at a park in the gorgeous sunshine. Then we headed to Intel. Intel was pretty cool, telling us all about how micro processors were made. There was also a cool touch screen showing you how detailed a micro chip really is. After Intel, we headed to the Tech Museum of Innovation, which had a lot of hands on stuff. There was an Imax theater here, which we went to. We saw “Tornado Alley” which was a documentary of a guy trying to get a recording of the inside of a tornado. They did a ton of meteorology work and built a monster car to make this dream happen. It was amazing, but gave me a major headache. We left the Tech Museum to go mini golfing, which was a ton of fun, even though I wasn’t very good at it. Finishing the day with a pizza dinner, we left for our motel. I ended up in a pretty good hotel room, with three girls I could relate to pretty well. We were planning on going swimming, but the pool was closed. We had fun anyways!
Day Two: We left the motel and headed for the California Academy of Science. It was AMAZING!! After the long wait to get in, we headed for the mini coral reefs the Academy had. The California Academy of Science had sooo many cool things! It had its own mini rainforest, with each layer of the forest having a floor of its own. We also took the elevator to the Steinhart Aquarium, which was really cool. We could’ve spent at least another two hours there. We left the California Academy of Science, grabbed some lunch, and headed for the Golden Gate Bridge. We drove across the bridge and had some photography time with the bridge. The view of San Fran was amazing, as was the view of Alcatraz. After taking pictures, we got back on the bus, drove back over the bridge, and headed for the ExplOratorium. The ExplOratorium was so much fun. Everything there was hands on. You could create a pendulum, play with magnets, and generate electricity. We left the ExplOratorium and headed for Alcatraz. The ferry ride was fun. Me and a few friends went up to the front of the ship, and got splashed. A lot. One of the boys we were up there with got absolutely soaked! When we arrived on Alcatraz, we headed up to the cell houses to get our audio tour. You each got your own private headphones, with your own private tour. This was not a highlight of the trip for me. Pier 39, the next thing we did, was the polar opposite of Alcatraz. It was like a boardwalk mall, and I had tons of fun hanging out with my friends. Day two was lots of fun.
Day Three: The first thing we did on day three was Stanford. After seeing the magnificent sculptures, we headed for the Cathedral. The Cathedral was unbelievable. As soon as you walked in, you knew that this was not the time for laughing and joking. I was walking down a long aisle with my mouth hanging open when a friend pointed up behind me. I turned around, and my jaw just about fell out. The whole back wall of the balcony was organ pipes. Big ones and little ones. I would love to either play or hear that organ. The stained glass windows, carvings, and the mosaics were also breathtaking. After Stanford, we headed out for the San Juan Batista Mission, which was a drastic change compared to the Stanford Cathedral. While the Stanford Cathedral was just perfect, the Mission was not. If you looked closely, you could see where the painter’s hand had wavered while painting the patterns on the pillars, and I found a pencil outline. They were both so amazing. We also checked out the San Andreas Fault line. If you didn’t know it was there…you wouldn’t know it was there. It just looks like a furrow in the dirt. But then I thought of this being one tectonic plate…and that being another tectonic plate, and tectonic plates are very, very big…and it scared me a little bit. We left the Mission and drove to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. That was awesome. I’d been there once before, and the few things I remembered were exactly as I had remembered them. My favorite part of the Aquarium was the big tank, with the giant turtle, the tuna, and the Sunfish. We got dinner and Ghirardelli Chocolates at Cannery Row afterwards. Day three was awesome.
Day Four: Day four was our last day in California. The last day was also the rainiest day. We left the motel for the last time and drove to the Redwoods. We went on a short hike through the Redwoods. Those trees are HUGE!!! We fit 45 eighth graders around one of the trees, holding hands. After the Redwoods, we learned that we weren’t going to be able to go on the rides at the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. We were all pretty disappointed. But we did go bowling, which was more enjoyable then I’d expected, and we played laser tag, which was not what I expected. I was okay at bowling, but I did horrible at laser tag. Let’s just say I got shot by 26 people…and successfully shot 2 people. I scored zero points. We walked around at the boardwalk’s gift shops for a while, and got a couple of souvenirs. We also walked around at the beach for a while. Leaving the boardwalk, we headed for a buffet. The food there was delicious! After that…it was a straight shot for the airport. Our flight got delayed an hour, and almost got delayed two hours, due to mechanical difficulties, but they thankfully fixed them in time for us to leave at 9:40 pm. We arrived at the airport at around midnight, and at school at around 2:15 am.
I had tons of fun on the CAMS trip, and I definitely encourage the future eighth graders to consider going on the trip. You can see a web album of my pictures by clicking here!