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Friday, April 23, 2010

Atlanta Trip, Part 1

There are many scholarships out there for young, fresh-out of high school students. There are many other scholarships, but many have multiple requirements. When I decided to Google "Women's Scholarships," I found one called "Possible Woman Foundation International." It was for the non-traditional (read: older) woman/student who either started and stopped her education, or never was able to start. It was based on overcoming adversity, grades, letters of recommendation, community volunteering, and an essay about our goals and dreams. The application stated that preference would be given to Georgia residents, but all were welcome to apply. I didn't know what my chances would be, but I had to try. I barely made the deadline! I wrote the essay from my heart, gathered all of the required data, and mailed it off with a little prayer. I was notified in March that I was one of seven winners!

One stipulation to this scholarship was that if picked, we would have to fly to Atlanta for a winner's banquet; the woman's conference was optional, but would be included if we chose to attend. As I prepared to leave for a whirlwind trip to Atlanta, it still did not feel real. Ricky drove me to the air port Monday morning, and since he could not come in with me, I was just a little nervous about being alone. I had not flown since 1997 when we went to Cancun! My friends had told me about all the changes since 2001, and I read up on the airline's website, so I was as prepared as I could be. When I placed all of my items in the scanner bins--carry on luggage, one quart baggie of liquids, large bag of pill bottles, my camera, my purse, etc., I slipped off my shoes, then went through the metal detectors. As I retrieved my items from the scanner bins on the other side, one of the security officers saw my liquids bag and said, "This is a very good packing job!" That made me laugh. Then, he picked up my GALLON bag of pill bottles and said, "So is this!" I replied, "THIS is just sad!

The first thing I did once I was past security was to buy a bottle of cold water. They do not allow you to bring drinks into the airport, but if you buy it there, it is ok to take on the airplane. $2.00 for one bottle--what a rip off! Next, I found the gate where my plane would depart; took a quick rest room break, and back to the gate to wait for boarding instructions.

Soon, we were in the air, headed to Atlanta, Georgia!

The flight was great. I was able to change my seat to a window seat when I printed my boarding pass, so I had a great view of all the clouds, and the countryside below. As we approached Atlanta, the excitement grew even more for me--this was really happening!

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