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"Summer of languages" - Princeton short answer


alex2493 2 / 4  
Dec 29, 2010   #1
Prompt: Please tell us how you have spent the last two summers (or vacations between school years), including any jobs you have held, if not already detailed on the Common Application.

Language is the traveler's golden key to unlock the mysteries of the world. Traveling the far reaches of the planet has always been a passion of mine. I personally believe that one of the best ways to discover a new culture when traveling is to immerse oneself in the language. The curious dialect and mellifluous intonations of a language delineate a culture unknown.

"Merhaba!" I heard from the shrill, giddy voices of my relatives as I revisited Turkey for the first time in a year. As I listened to the deep, melodious sounds of the Turkish language, I reminisced on the countless adventures I have had in Turkey with my family. My memory drifted back to learning how to waterski in Bodrum, visiting the famous fairy caves of Cappadocia, diving for seashells with my aunt, and visiting Ataturk's palace and the Blue Mosque in Istanbul.

"Yiassou!" I heard numerously as my father, sister, and I bounced from store to store in the small marketplace of Kos, Greece. The language sounded carefully carved like the small trinkets I found among the white, uniform buildings that characterize Greece as a vision in white.

"Hola!" yelled the little voices of the Maleku children in Costa Rica. Last summer I spent a week in a small village in Costa Rica doing community service. Of all the activities we performed, my favorite one was playing with the children. I struggled to decipher their quick, playful words as they tugged on my legs and climbed onto my back. The accent of their high-pitched squeals during the monumental mud fight that took place in the warm rain characterized the light-heartedness of the children in the community.

"Merhaba!" I heard once more. My annual trip to Turkey each summer is one of the highlights of my year because I get the opportunity to hear once more the refreshing and familiar warm tones of a language I love. I reunited with my family members and tried retrieving the Turkish I spoke last year out of the depths of my memory. When in Turkey, I spend as much time as possible outside, traveling the popular cities and spending time by the sea.

"Konnichiwa!" said the humble and polite voices of the Japanese as my father and I entered restaurants and museums. Japan marked the end of my travels last summer. Walking on foot around Tokyo gave me the opportunity to surround myself in the quiet, yet swift paced language and life of the Japanese. The large temples and vivid nightlife of Japan entranced me like the fascinating characters of the written language.
brookelanae 7 / 15  
Dec 29, 2010   #2
I found this essay to be fantastically written, and quite unique in its format. If language is your passion, this really emphasized so.
Gillatorby 1 / 11  
Dec 29, 2010   #3
I really like this essay. One inevitable flaw about this essay, however, is that it lends or implies the idea that you are well-off and have the privilege to travel to exotic places--just something you might want to consider.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Jan 17, 2011   #4
Awesome, you seem to have some writing talent. Opening up the floodgates of words is one part, and you have that, but then on the revision you should tighten it up and trim away unnecessary words. That is the second part.

I personally believe that o One of the best ways to discover a new culture when traveling is to immerse oneself in the language. The curious dialect and mellifluous intonations of a language delineate a culture unknown. (put these two paragraphs together) "Merhaba!" I heard from the shrill, giddy voices of my relatives as I revisited... Awesome...

When in Turkey, I spend as much time as possible outside, traveling the popular cities and spending time by the sea. This does not qualify for a place in your essay. What is the most important thing? What is the most important thing to accomplish with the essay? Isn't it to make the reader have an unexpected experience of inspiration? Focus on your own aspiration/inspiration, and the reader will be inspired.

The essay is very descriptive. You definitely demonstrate good writing ability, but if it is all description the good impression you make is limited to the impression you make with good description. I want action and a vision for the future... short term goals and action!!! :-)


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