HIGH LIFE A WEEKLY FORUM FOR HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS : Memorable Vacations--for Better or Worse

Aargh! With summer come those dreadful family vacations. But they never turn out as bad as we think they'll be, or do they?

Some memories of past vacations are precious, while others are disastrously forgettable. Hot Topics wonders: "What's your most memorable family summer vacation?"

"When I traveled through eight states in 1986. We were going to Montana for a family reunion. Having a Fourth of July in a state I've never been in before was what made this trip so memorable."

Leah Coonfield, 14,

sophomore, Buena Park

"Camping at Oceanside. It was fun because my family and friends were there."

Manuel Vega, 15,

sophomore, Buena Park

"I once skied at Snow Summit in Big Bear with my family and friends. While taking the lift to the top, there was a power failure. It felt like we were stuck for an hour, but it was only 20 minutes. It was dark, the wind was blowing, the chairs were shaking and I was arguing with my sister the whole time."

Aaron Yu, 17,

senior, Cypress

"Lake Havasu on the Colorado River. I was in the sixth grade and my dad taught me how to water ski and drive our ski boat."

Craig Kronick, 17,

senior, Cypress

"Last year at Antelope Lake, where I smashed the back of our truck into a tree."

Jennifer Hull, 17,

senior, Cypress

"When our family went to Disneyland two years ago. We met Mickey Mouse. My older sister was just married and her husband is from out of state, so he's never seen Mickey Mouse."

Stacy Williamson, 15,

sophomore, Cypress

"Nine years ago, we went miniature golfing and I sliced my older sister's forehead open with a golf club. She got blood on her favorite tennis shoes."

Cheryl Hull, 14,

sophomore, Cypress

"Grand Canyon, two summers ago. After stopping at Las Vegas, we headed for the Grand Canyon in our trailer and car. My cousin and I went to the restroom at the trailer campsite. When we came out, both cars were leaving. We screamed and called after them, but they didn't hear us. We panicked because we figured that both of the cars probably thought we were in the other and we knew their next stop was going to be Hoover Dam. Luckily, they stopped to get gas and made a U-turn to get on the freeway and passed by the campsite once more. The first car didn't even see us, but the trailer car did. Just imagine if they would have decided to get gas elsewhere . . . yikes!"

Minyi Han, 15,

sophomore, Cypress

"Yosemite. It was fun to get away. I got to know my mom better. I live with my dad, so it was nice spending time with my mom." Jennifer Kadau, 15,

junior, Edison

"When I went to Washington, D.C., during my seventh-grade summer with my family. I got to know my family better by spending time with them."

Darin Courter, 17,

senior, Edison

"About six years ago, it was the first time I went to our second home in San Felipe, Mexico. I learned about different life styles."

Temre Boyd, 17,

senior, Edison

"Going to Maui. It was fun being able to snorkel, getting out of California and spending time with my family."

Amber Wishart, 16,

junior, Esperanza

"Mammoth. It was fun to go and spend time with my family. It was great to be together."

Shelly Rime, 16,

junior, Esperanza

"We went to Lake Militon in Fresno when I was 12. Everything went wrong. Our boat broke down and we had two flat tires on our trailer. That's just a bit of all the disasters."

Michelle Haehn, 17,

senior, Fountain Valley

"Coming out to California three years ago from Louisiana, our air conditioner broke down and it was 115 degrees in Arizona. We had two birds in our car and they were actually panting."

Lisa Ko, 16,

senior, Fountain Valley

"We went on a cruise to Mexico and had a lot of fun. We met a lot of people."

Jennifer Chinberg, 13,

freshman, Fountain Valley

"We went to Pismo Beach in Arroyo Grande with my family and my friend Beth. We met a lot of guys and we had a beach party at night, too."

Lisa Graham, 15,

sophomore, Fountain Valley

"We went to Ensenada right before my sister got married. It was our last vacation together, so it was memorable."

Debby Gromada, 15,

sophomore, Fountain Valley

"Greece in the summer of '87. I met new people and some of my relatives I never knew. The beaches were gorgeous: The water was crystal blue and the sand was white."

Julianna Argyrakis, 15,

junior, Garden Grove

"Arizona, Thanksgiving of 1980. Since it was so hot out there, I was in the swimming pool all the time. I got to see my relatives I hadn't seen for half of my life."

Lisa McCluera, 16,

senior, Garden Grove

"Lake Tahoe in '85, because we went skiing and the mountain was awesome."

Jason Paca, 15,

sophomore, Garden Grove

"When we went to Hawaii last summer. The waves were excellent."

Chris Hahn, 14,

freshman, Huntington Beach

"When we went to Ensenada last summer, because my dad forgot his wallet. We stopped to get gas and then he realized he didn't have any money. It ruined our vacation because we had to come all the way back to Anaheim to get his wallet."

Steve Perez, 17,

senior, Katella

"I was 13 when we went to Hong Kong. It was memorable because it totally smelled like crazy. My sister stepped on a dead rat and there was a cockroach on my dad's shirt. I cried because it smelled so bad."

Susan Kim, 16,

junior, Kennedy

"Last summer, we all went camping up at Lake San Antonio River. I was with my mom and stepdad and it was just lots of fun to be with everyone."

Jami Collins, 14,

freshman, Loara

"When we went camping in Santa Barbara. We were having lunch near a big lake and this huge snake popped out in front of my mom. My brother, our friends and I were chasing after this thing and after a long time we found the snake, but these other people had already killed it."

Billy Pyo, 16,

senior, Los Alamitos

"I went to Oregon and killed a squirrel with an air rifle and skinned it. It was fun."

Mike Slocumb, 16,

senior, Los Amigos

"We went up to my grandma's cabin near Yosemite and my cousin David got hit in the head with a big stick while playing stickball."

Alton Hitchcock, 16,

junior, Los Amigos

"When I went to Europe two years ago to visit my relatives in Yugoslavia. I saw the dramatic differences in the culture, the people and their attitudes."

Vera Orloff, 16,

junior, Rancho Alamitos

"When I went to Hawaii in eighth grade. It was the first trip I took without all the children. It was just my parents, my uncle, my aunt and me."

Karen Packard, 16,

senior, Rosary

"Hawaii, because we had a great time. The beaches were nice, but too crowded."

Edgar Gonzalez, 16,

junior, Saddleback

"Yellowstone in '85, because it was great. Everything was so majestic. It's exciting because now it's all burned and I can't see a lot of the scenes again."

Amy Garcia, 15,

sophomore, Savanna

"Hawaii when I was about 8. I liked it because my family is not all together anymore and I miss those family moments."

Julie Horvath, 15,

sophomore, Savanna

"About three years ago, we went to the Grand Canyon and even my brother came along. He's eight years older than I am, so he never wants to go with us."

Kris Scudellari, 15,

sophomore, Savanna

"Going to Yosemite. We forgot our tent and everything else. All we had were our sleeping bags. My dad said, 'Don't worry, this is what the Indians had to do.' "

Angie Vega, 14,

sophomore, Savanna

"We went to Las Vegas. My parents were in the casino, and I was walking around when a hooker approached me and asked how old I was."

Anthony Choe, 17,

senior, Sonora

"We went up to Bakersfield this past Easter vacation and I got to see relatives I haven't seen in a long time."

Albert Cisneros, 16,

junior, Sunny Hills

Next Week's Hot Topic:

What do you collect as a hobby?

Hot Topic responses were gathered by Lynda Kim at Buena Park Mall and Huntington State Beach.DR, GABRIEL SALDIVAR

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