Unanswered [3] | Urgent [0]
  

Home / Undergraduate   % width Posts: 6

'Three days in the wilderness' - leaving comfort zone prompt


hs61 1 / 5  
Dec 15, 2011   #1
Write about an experience in which you left your comfort zone. How did this experience change you?

I need to submit this piece in the next 4 hours so PLEASE HELP. Please give feedback and don't be afraid to criticize the piece!! Thank you!!!!

Three days in the wilderness without family, technology or running water. Not only was this field trip my first time away from my family, but I was without friends, technology, or any form of electricity. Students from each 7th grade science class were selected to represent the school on a trip to Port Isobel, a 230 acre island located in the Chesapeake Bay, in the hopes of cleaning the Bay and learning about the environment. As a part of Generation Y, the generation to grow up with technological luxuries such as the Internet, I couldn't imagine trading a nice air conditioned house for a cabin in the middle of nowhere, yet reluctantly accepted the invitation.

On the first day, we visited Tangier Island just west of our destination. The island had a mere population of 700 inhabitants, a population small than that of my middle school. Stray cats were just as common on the island as computers were in our hometown. Living without phones, cars, or television was normal to the people of Tangier Island. They chose to focus on church and family rather than tangible pleasures. Coming onto the island we viewed these people as poor individuals who needed our help, yet once we spent time with the people we quickly saw that they lived without shame and were proud of their simplistic lifestyle. We were the ones who had needed their help to see there were more important things in the world than technology.

By the second day I had made new friends who distracted me from becoming homesick, I had taken nature walks through the marshland to replace technology, and I had learned to catch and cook my own food without using an electric stove. I no longer missed my comfort zone and was willing to embrace new ideas from outside my comfort zone.

Before departure on the third day, we visited a certain part of the Bay which was completely littered with trash; we immediately began cleaning up. Towards the end of the cleanup process, I ran across a fish caught in a bottle that couldn't swim out. After pouring the fish and the water out of the bottle, I noticed the bottle was not only recyclable, but it had a Pennsylvania label on it. Rivers from six states, some of which do not even border the Chesapeake Bay, run into the Bay. The decision a person in Pennsylvania to not recycle nearly took the life of this fish.

In just three days I had gained a new outlook on life, all because I chose to leave everything I knew to be the normal way of living. The world is heavily interconnected; people can affect the lives of others for the better or worse without even realizing it. I care more for not only the people directly around me, but for people elsewhere in the world through thinking through the effects of my actions before committing them, and through recognizing my place in the world to help improve it for future generations.

kayleighlevitt 5 / 8  
Dec 15, 2011   #2
So this is my thoughts: I can see you really had a realization. The world is interconnected. That is huge. I think that with the right organization of the essay you can really flatter that idea because as it is, it is dry.

" Towards the end of the cleanup process, I ran across a fish caught in a bottle that couldn't swim out. After pouring the fish and the water out of the bottle, I noticed the bottle was not only recyclable, but it had a Pennsylvania label on it. Rivers from six states, some of which do not even border the Chesapeake Bay, run into the Bay. The decision a person in Pennsylvania to not recycle nearly took the life of this fish. "

Im thinking it would be cool to drop the reader in at the moment you came across the fish caught in the bottle. Then talk about your realization of the interconnectedness. Then talk about how being in nature brought you to that realization, and then finally talk about how it took stepping out of your comfort zone of technology and friends to get you there.

With imagery, a touch on whats going on in your psyche, and specific stories of your experience you can make your essay more colorful.

Try changing the story to be more like this, I think it will be more attention grabbing if you make it more personal rather than how you have it now.

"I reached into the river to catch a floating bottle. Something moved from within it. A fish seemed to be trapped inside. I noticed that the bottle was not only recyclable, but it had a Penn label on it. (insert how you felt about that and the fact that you were 6 states away)"

Hope that helps.
Take a look at my essay please :)
hayoungyoun 3 / 4  
Dec 15, 2011   #3
I felt that you were being redundant when you said "...but I was without friends, technology, or any form of electricity."
"...without even realizing it." = subconsciously?
Try to find another word that replaces "technology."
Overall, great essay!!!
OP hs61 1 / 5  
Dec 15, 2011   #4
To clarify, when you say "to drop the reader in at the moment you came across the fish caught in the bottle" do you mean to start my essay with that? Should I reorder my paragraphs? Thanks for the help and thanks in advance for the clarification!

"Three days in the wilderness without my family. Not only was this field trip my first time away from my family, but I was without friends, technology, or any form of electricity. "

Does that sound better and less repetitive?

Are there any quick changes I could make to make the essay less dry without having to rework the entire essay? I don't have much time left to submit it, and I have an exam to study for :(
angelalp19 1 / 5  
Dec 15, 2011   #5
My concerns were pretty much addressed by the other comments but I have one more comment:

By the second day I had made new friends who distracted me from becoming homesick, I had taken nature walks through the marshland to replace technology, and I had learned to catch and cook my own food without using an electric stove. I no longer missed my comfort zone and was willing to embrace new ideas from outside my comfort zone.

I think the second sentence could use some work. Maybe:
I realized that the life inside my comfort zone, while admittedly much easier, essentially deprived me of times like these. The ideas which I had regarded as silly or strange were, in actuality, liberating and a learning experience when viewed through an unbiased lens.
summer1 - / 2  
Dec 15, 2011   #6
Great writing. I would rework the first couple of sentences because they both are saying the same thing. I really liked how you show the change in your world outlook took place in only three days.


Home / Undergraduate / 'Three days in the wilderness' - leaving comfort zone prompt