Alternative Spring Break 2011
Instead of going home to Atlanta or going to Miami Beach to get my tan on, I decided to go to the beautiful state of Nebraska. I know what you’re thinking, “Why Nebraska”? Well, I along with my co-coordinator Jake planned the trip to Omaha, NE through Boston University’s Alternative Spring Break (ASB). I along with seven other random students and a chaperone worked with Rebuilding Together Omaha for a week. Rebuilding Together Omaha works with elderly residents in low- income areas of Omaha to fix up their homes. They do minor repairs, painting, and cleaning. Our group worked with a lovely woman by the name of Betty. She wasn’t able to get around much so it was nice being able to help her fix up her 125 year old house. The house has been in her family for generations, so it meant a lot to her. We painted, we cleaned, we fixed up patches in her wall. We also learned from Betty.
She told us about Omaha, the Midwest, and even gave us life lessons about love. She was quite the talker. We worked hard, learned about housing issues, and laughed a lot. Most importantly, the service brought us nine strangers together as a group.
The Group with Betty.
Besides doing community service, we explored Omaha. Rebuilding Together gave us the VIP treatment. From providing nice college apartments, to unlimited amounts of food, Omahaians sure know a thing or two about hospitality. Every day they gave us free lunch and dinners. Have you ever heard of a runza or a cheese frenchee? Well a runza is like a warm and gooey hot pocket. A frenchee is more like a mini fried grilled cheese sandwich. It sounds disgusting, but it was delicious. Besides the great food, we went to the top oft he tallest building in Omaha (the largest between Denver and Chicago) and got and amazing view of Nebraska and Iowa. We went bowling, played on the largest park slides I have ever seen, played lazer tag, and even played paint-less paintball. After our busy days of service and fun, we went back to apartments to reflect on our service, joke around, and tell freakishly scary stories. Believe it or not, we had a wild time in Omaha.
Cheese Frenchee (yummm)
While Omaha was great, getting there was half the adventure. Did I mention we drove there? Yes, thirty hours of non-stop fun. We stopped at Niagara Falls, Cleveland, drove through Chicago, and even stopped at the world’s largest truck stop in Iowa. Basically, we did everything you could imagine while bonding in a van.
Overall my Alternative Spring Break experience was great. I went on an ASB trip last year as well and it always amazes me how much I learn and how close I become with a group of random strangers. It’s nice to get away from the busy Boston University campus and to try something new and step outside of my comfort zone.
Greatest slides in the Old Market in Omaha
My spring breaks just keep getting better and better, but I don’t know if anything can top my 2011 trip to Omaha.