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Gaping question is not common, and its meaning could easily be misinterpreted, but neither of the individual definitions is offended by the coupling: gaping ADJECTIVE (Of a hole, wound, etc.) wide open: question NOUN A sentence worded or expressed so as to elicit information: 1.1 A doubt about the truth or validity of ...


To replace 'to' with 'and' here would not be grammatically incorrect, but you would lose the rhythmic and rhetorical impact of the "from... to... to..." format of your sentence. Personally, I'd leave it as it is. Regarding another stylistic issue, I would replace ...gave me the conviction that this is the place for me. with the more elegant ...


"Breakfast" is indeed the subject and "made" is the verb. However, in this sentence there is an elliptical infinitive phrase (i.e., "to feel sick"), being used as a noun--and indeed the direct object, leaving "me" as the indirect object. There is no noun clause.

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