Jayde’s Summer Travels: One Girl, One World, Many Adventures

So… I might have traveled to France (alone- eek!) over the Summer in a complete month long dream, taken so pictures that my phone exploded, saw so many beautiful things that my heart burst, and heard so much français that my ears bled, but I wanted them to bleed more?


And it was one of the best things that ever happened to me.

Umbrealla RIvera

Me on the Mediterranean Shore!

The experience was actually SO magical, that I’m having a bit of reluctance writing about it, even though only the fantabulous occurred during my visit… It was literally a dream that I never wanted to end, because of how much fun I had, how much stress I relieved, how much I learned, and how centered I felt afterwards.

If you are wondering how in the world I ever got this opportunity, then I will indeed tell you- my dad one day forwarded me a text from one of his friends, that said, (and I quote)

“…you have a 16-year-old daughter who speaks French, right?”

After a skeptical “…Why…?” from me, my dad forwarded me yet another text that said, (and I quote)

“I know a family over in the South of France whose daughter wants to come to America, and would be happy to host an American girl at their place for a month.”

And I texted my dad back, (and I quote)


(okay, I might have eliminated some exclamation points, “asdfghjkl!”s and “gaaaaaahhhhha!”s, but…)

Even though I only had three years of French so far, I wasn’t going to let the fact that I couldn’t flawlessly round off all my “auxs” or perfectly conjugate all my verbs “dans le passé compose” slip and ruin my chances of a month in France!

ALSO, I was going to be in New York to open the JulyBalaya Music Festival just a week before the week they wanted me over, so it was the *perfect* way to show my fellow exchanger (who was an absolute dear) one of the greatest cities in ‘Merica!

In any case, it as the perfect excuse for the trip of a lifetime, and I was so ready for it.  I honestly had my bags packed an entire two weeks early.

After an absolutely wonderful time showing my new friend around, we went back to her hometown-

I got to stay with the most wonderful and welcoming family in the entire South of France, in a quaint little town called Valence- known for their sunflowers, wine and apricots- and made a friend for life.

I visited beautiful castles, saw breathtaking landscapes, discovered more than I ever anticipated about the history and culture of one of the most amazing countries ever, spent an entire weekend on the Mediterranean, and another weekend in Paris.  I know I am the luckiest girl ever.

Here’s the link to my Pintrest page with the best of my pictures from France 🙂

(I took so many though, that it might take a few months to complete posting all of them. Literally every. single. picture. I took looked good because of how beautiful this place was!)


So, moral of the story?  If you EVER get a mysterious text from a family member that says, (and I quote),

“you have a ___ year old ______ who can speak _______, right?”

SAY YES! (with a few “asdfghjkl”s for fun)

Thanks for reading about my adventures, Have a Sunfilled Day, and, as always…

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~ Jayde Sunburst

Porsche 918 Spyder Anyone?

Porsche 918

Smoothing in the Perfect Porsche 918

Summer 2015!  Performing at Julybalaya 2015 in Brooklyn, experiencing Opera Season in Cincinnati, perfecting my French in Valance, what else? The 60th Annual Porsche Parade in French Lick, Indiana and it was fabulous.  Beautiful Porsches, a marvelous hotel with architectural delights.

My dad, who is a true Porsche aficionado, registered us early and of the 1,000 cars, we were number 562.  Our Porsche was ready to show off!

We began with the Concours, we saw gorgeous Porsches everywhere.  Our first stop was “60 4 60 Museum” celebrating Porsche’s sixty years.  Sixty cars over the last sixty-plus years were displayed together along with unique details about their places in Porsche History.  Absolutely loved seeing the 1949 356 Gmünd Coupe and the deep purple 2015 918 Spyder.  I was telling a gentleman how much I loved the 918’s deep purple color, and then he then stepped to the 918, opened the car door and said, “It’s mine, would you like to take a picture it it?  I’ve never let anyone else in the car except me.”  Another,  I gracefully slid into the cockpit, laid my hands on the steering wheel and  smiled!

Our next day was spent at the airport runway. In the morning, my dad drove our Porsche in the Autocross.  It was a blast watching him improve his time each time he owned the course.  They take autocross very seriously at Parade.  We were so honored to meet Wolfgang Porsche and his son, Felix. I begged my dad to let me drive.  He wouldn’t budge so I found my own event, the  Kids’ Concours and I won!

I hand painted my little wooden Porsche with a sunrise.  And then Dad said, “Jayde, let’s do some driving.”  I was excited to complete the Porsche Teen Street Survival Course, where, along with about 60 other teens, I tested our ABS brakes and maneuvered serious steering survival tips.  I know it will make a huge difference with driving in LA.

After the ice-cream social and then the Zone 4 Party at the Pete Dye Clubhouse, alas, our Porsche Parade time was coming to a close. We spent great times with  our friends, we met some wonderful new friends like Urban Outlaw, Magnus Walker, and together, all of us ogled over  the beautiful Porsches.

And now, I’m counting down the days to the next Porsche Parade, see you in Vermont!

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– Jayde Sunburst