How is an 8 Year Old Adjusting to World Travel?

Sydney Frazier at the Eiffel Tower in Paris recently. She is the granddaughter of Los Alamos resident Teralene Foxx and is traveling the world with her parents for the next two years. Photo by Jason Frazier


Los Alamos

In October, my youngest daughter Kerri, her husband Jason Frazier, and 8-year-old daughter Sydney began their long planned adventure of traveling around the world (see “Traveling the World” Los Alamos Daily Post, Nov. 29, 2012.)

One of the main questions they were asked before leaving “What about your daughter?” Of course they were taking her with them and homeschooling! Yesterday, Feb. 8 was their 100 day of travel and homeschooling. 

So how does an 8 year old adjust to travel? They are staying each place for a month at a time to get a flavor of the culture and the country. 

Each week Sydney writes us something about what has happened. I thought you might like to hear travel from a child’s perspective. Although, every so often she gets sad about her friends, she has made some new friends, and Skype works well to keep in touch. Her parents make an effort to take her places such as parks where children frequent.

Sydney wrote us from Paris “Today I climbed the Eiffel tower. We took the stairs. There are 720 steps just to get to the second floor (then you have to take an elevator). The first floor view is okay. The second floor is like wow. The top is like WOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW! You can see all of Paris. It was REALLY windy at the top.”

Sidney Frazier takes an art class at the Louve in Paris with her mother Kerri Frazier. Photo by Jason Frazier

Sidney Frazier shows the art she created while taking an art class at the Louve in Paris. Photo by Jason Frazier

She took an art class at the Louve. Although given in French, a bilingual child she met helped her translate. In one class, she drew a horse and a knight. They have drawn pictures at ancient ruins.

While in Paris the family went to many art museums: She says “Do you like modern art? I do NOT, because it is weird. This is what I saw, a canvas covered in black.”

Sidney Frazier takes a look at art hanging in a Paris museum, describing this piece as ‘weird.’ Photo by Jason Frazier

Her letter from Arles, France was all about cheese: “I am in the city of Arles in southern France. They have the best street markets. They have the best cheese. The cheese in Paris is scary but good. In Arles it’s even more scary. There is green cheese and moldy cheese and cheese with blue dots and even red cheese. It’s really good.”

Cheese found in Arles, France. Photo by Jason Frazier

Jan. 25, Sydney got to go to a French public school, in Arles, with an English teacher and got to help teach English to French children. She was very excited.

Every so often she finds a furry friend: “Today I went to the most famous graveyard in the world – Les Alycamps. I made a little friend at the graveyard. He is a cat and I named him Rascal because he likes to play. When I was playing with Rascal he grabbed my mom’s glove and dropped it in a sarcophagus. I could not get the glove because the cat loved playing. I finally got the cat out of the way and we got the glove.”

Rascal the cat hiding in a sarcophagus. Photo by Jason Frazier

They went to a 2000-year-old Roman arena. The arena is now sometimes used for bullfights. Sydney says: “You must be very brave to fight bulls. You might call yourself “Daredevil.” The people that fight bulls are called matadors and razeteurs. In Provence, the razeteurs have to get a ribbon tucked between the bull’s horns before time is up. They have special hooks to grab the ribbon. When the bull chases the razeteurs they jump over the fence. Mommy, Daddy, and I pretended to fight the bull. I was mostly the bull. I thought it was fun being the bull and watching Daddy jumping over the fence.”

Sidney Frazier and her father Jason Frazier at a 2000-year-old Roman arena. Photo by Kerri Frazier

Jason Frazier hopes the fence of a 2000-year-old Roman arena to get away from daughter Sidney Frazier. Photo by Kerri Frazier

Sidney is getting to talk to interesting people and learn about different professions.

While in Arles, France for the month of January, their landlord was an Australian woman, named Catriona (aka.Cat)  who was an archeologist. As part of her homeschooling she got to interview her and learn about the archeological digs. 

Sydney describes the profession: “An archeologist studies about cultures and the history of humans. I liked listening to her and I liked her pictures.” Cat told her stories of her archaeological adventures.

She was impressed about where the archeologists camp. “Archeologists have to camp out a lot of times because the sites are too far away from the cities. In Australia, you have to camp out on cots or else the crocodiles will eat you. Cat could hear the crocodiles snuffling under her. It would be scary hearing them snuffle under you. You cannot have any meat or it will attract crocodiles. It would be sad to not have any meat, but it would be sadder to be eaten by a crocodile.”

They just arrived in Denia, Spain, on the Mediterranean. She says of the area: “It is cool because it has palm trees like Hawaii.” They now have bikes to ride on the many trails, a little faster transportation than walking.   

When they Skype us once a week, Sydney is cheerful and upbeat. She generally gives us facts about where she has visited or what she has learned. Such as, “What were the three ships of Christopher Columbus and which one was the fastest.” Do you know the answer?


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