The leading human rights organization for all individuals with Down syndrome.

National Down Syndrome Society
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New York New York 10017
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The Traveler
I have traveled to 38 states and 11 countires
I have traveled to 38 states and 11 countires
The Traveler

My name is Sujeet Desai. I am 28 years old. I am a musician and a self-advocate. I play six instruments. I travel around the world playing my music and also speaking about "My Story." Since 1997, when I started performing, I've traveled to 38 states in the U.S. and 11 countries. When I was invited by the National Down Syndrome Society to be a part of "My great story" I was surprised because I have always been recognized for my musical talents, not my travel knowledge. Along the way I realized that my music has given me the confidence and the self esteem to stand in front of thousands of people all across the world. Traveling around the word is very educational, from the minute you decide to take a trip until the moment you return home. I've traveled by air in planes, on water by boats and on road by trains & cars. Air travel is my favorite! From the moment you enter the airport- it's just fun. Checking in luggage, going through security & customs, remembering to take off my shoes, finding the gate number, searching for flight schedules on the monitor, some times running because you are late to board the plane or sometimes being delayed and waiting hours & hours for the flight to take off" Once I'm on the plane I can't wait until those pretty air hostesses bring me snacks! I love eating while watching movies on the tiny TV screens and staying up when others sleep. When I arrive in a new city I am always fresh and ready to go. I like staying in my own hotel room and watching late night TV. I always use the hotel's gym and/or pool. It's important to me to stay in shape. Some of the highlights from my recent U.S. travels include my trip to New York City to film, "My Great Story". I had to wear 10 different safari outfits, I felt like a real traveler. I met a real monkey named, Kimba. He was really cute but very hairy! When I was in Las Vegas I got to go back stage and meet Celine Dion, who is such an amazing and beautiful person" I adore her. In Chicago I got to meet Oprah, which was incredible! She invited me on her show" I didn't want the day to end! In Boise Idaho at the Special Olympics World Winter Games, I played a duet with Kenny G. and was introduced by Kristi Yamaguchi. International travels have always been very unique. In Dubai I enjoyed indoor Alpine skiing in 30 degree temperatures, and outside it was 90 degrees! The palm islands on the water were breathtaking. I will never forget my favorite hotel in Singapore, Grand Coperthon. It was huge with so many different international foods in a large buffet. It is open from 6:00 am in the morning until late at night. In Singapore I received an award from the President of Singapore for my musical performance. In Melaka & Kuala Lampur the tall towers & indoor water rides with new friends were amazing. In Europe riding in the giant wheel "London's Eye, "and in France walking up to the top of the Eiffel Tower had a breathtaking view of the city. I enjoy traveling and don't feel tired like my parents always do! Even after 24 hours of travel when I get to the venue I'm fresh and ready to perform. I love meeting new people, especially when they respect me. I love to meet beautiful babies born with Down syndrome as well as other children. I enjoy receiving their emails & photos and staying in touch with everyone I meet. The last, but most important part of my travels, is first I get to spend time just with my parents as I miss them after my marriage, and then I am back home to my beautiful wife, Carrie, and share photos and stories of all my experiences. So my word of advice"..Take every opportunity you can to travel as it makes you smart!

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Comments (1,000 character limit)

Erin KerrStainken, United States, TX
10/3/2013 2:01:41 PM
My older brother has down syndrome and seeing something like this that focuses so much on accomplishments and positivity is so great to see, and the cover art is amazing. I vote for this great story because it exemplifies so well the mission of self advocacy and the NDSS's campaign for positivity.

Rae C F Noble , United States , IL
2/22/2012 9:45:04 AM
What an incredible approach to LIVING, Sujeet!! Thank you for your inspiring message... have fun with all your upcoming adventures!

Tony Piontek , United States , LA
1/26/2011 5:17:33 PM
You're truly amazing Sujeet. I learned a lot about you and your brother being an olympic skiier,too. When is the other Special Olympics appearence? Is it this year-2011 for the Special Olympics Winter Games? Hope to see you at the NDSC Convention

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