When I was in college and already feeling the wanderlust, I joined my grandpa and fifty other retirees from China on to a Chinese tour bus and visited many of the national parks in the US.
Yes. One of those tour buses.
ones filled with obnoxious, throwin’ up their peace signs for terribly
staged photos, tour guide waiving around a flag. Yes. That was us.
visited all the states you never probably thought of visiting – the
Dakotas, Utah, Wyoming. The tour was entirely in Mandarin, a language I
barely know. That tour included stops at every Chinese buffet in towns
that don’t have any Asian population. You know those untouched crab
rangoons at a sad little pan-Asian buffet on the outskirts Salt Lake
City? Well, I’ve tried them. And I’ve been there. And not only have I
been there, I was there with fifty other retirees.
the sarcasm, I had a great time connecting with my grandpa. He is my
absolute favorite relative. I didn’t mind being with all the old people
because it meant I could hang out with him. We ate buffalo burgers at a
monument that failed to bring prominence and tourism to Sotuh Dakota. We
saw baby bears running through a sketchy safari park.
visited Badlands National Park in South Dakota, Devil’s Tower and Grand
Tetons in Wyoming, and also Yellowstone National Park.