The first time I brought home a piece of paper from school for my mom to sign, it carried me 120 miles away. These words, her name, a pen… released me from this town. Our class was going on a field trip to the Minnesota Zoo in Minneapolis. 120 miles away. I carried my permission slip with such care. I folded it twice, no wrinkles, as deep in my pocket as it would go. I knew the power these words held. These few words on this scrap of paper would take my feet from Washington Elementary onto the big yellow school bus. Up the three giant
steps, past the bus driver, onto one of the green bench seats. Open windows, singing songs about the 50 states and a farmer’s dog named Bingo, we were free. On the bus, on the road, to places unknown. The tires hummed to the magic of these words, and we were off to the zoo.
I was destined to see the world. And words would always take me there.
You have a ticket. Don’t be afraid to use it.