April 21, 2009
By Gabriella Carcioppolo BRONZE, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Gabriella Carcioppolo BRONZE, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
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This summer I went to Italy. It was by far one of the best vacations I’ve ever been on. The thing that wasn’t so great about it, was that my parents couldn’t go. So I went with my aunt, uncle, and cousins. I’m really close with them, they are basically another set of parents to me, and my cousins are like my brothers.

We had to leave from New York, and that meant a 4 hours drive with my 5 guy cousins and my aunt and uncle. W got to the airport a little early so we could take our time checking in our bags and going through security. Thankfully, there wasn’t a long line for either of those. We left from JFK Airport, and landed in Palermo, Sicily. The plane ride was good and went fast. We got there and retrieved our things from baggage, and then we were greeted by a whole lot of family. All our things were split into several cars. Then we made our way to my aunt’s house in Carini.

When we arrived there were many other people there who we had to say hi to. We talked about how long it has been since we’ve seen each other. See, I used to go to Italy every single summer, but I hadn’t been there in two years. Thankfully my Italian is still very good, so I had no trouble responding to everyone’s questions. My cousins on the other hand, were having a little trouble. After all that chaos, we walked over to our little house/apartment. The cool part about where we live is, it’s right across from my aunt’s hou se. We could go back and forth with out problems.

As soon as we got in the house everyone started claiming rooms. I ended up having to room with my older cousin; Sal, who’s 15. But, I never really stayed at my house. I stayed at my cousin’s house all the time. She lived about 5 minutes away from us, and has two daughters my age, so I stayed with them. It was a lot better than living with five boys who were 14-17 years old. The thing that I love about where we stay in Italy is; everything you need is within walking range. The little town is 5 minutes away from our house. There is a huge water fountain in the center if it so you can’t miss it. Around the fountain are several ice cream stores, a supermarket, café’s, and people selling fruit and vegetables from carts.

Everyday we would walk over to my aunt’s house and eat. That’s the only thing that gets you about Italy. If you’re on a diet, I highly suggest you don’t consider going there. Everywhere you go people are saying “eat, eat eat!” All the food there is so good, its not hard to gain weight, not hard at all. Anyways, after that we could cram into a car and drive down to my uncle’s house. This uncle is a little older then the others, but I love going to his house more than anything. His house is right across from a beach. That’s another thing that is irresistible about Italy. If you go there you HAVE to swim in the ocean. We would go to his house, watch some TV, and then head to the beach. We went to the same spot everyday, right between two big rocks where there was shade and you could get away from the beating sun. Once all our towels were set up, we would rip off our clothes and run as fast as we could into the ocean, diving into the waves.

We would swim for house and hours. One time we had a race; there was a small abandoned boat about a mile away from shore. Whoever got there first won, and who ever came last, would have to buy ice cream for all 6 of us. My older cousins, being stubborn as always, took off as fast as they could, my cousin (who’s the same age as me) and I stayed behind and took our time. Turns out we came back first and second. As soon as my older cousins were halfway there, they could barely breathe they were so tired. So they had to stop, and buy ice cream for everyone.

Another day, about twenty of us went on a boat that we rented. It was a really big comfortable boat, so the 2 hour ride to, where ever they were taking us, wasn’t so bad. Before we got to where we were supposed to go, they took us somewhere. I had no idea what it was until the man driving threw hundreds of fish into a huge circle that looked something like a net. That’s when I understood. Swordfish started jumping out of the water to get to the fish, it was really cool to see them so up close. WE got to this beach and it was beautiful. The water was as clear as it can possibly get. You saw straight to the oceans floor, and who knows how deep that was. As son as the boat stopped, everyone stood up and jumped straight into the water. Everyone was boiling because the sun was so strong, and the cool water against our skin felt better than ever.
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We visited a lot of different beaches and islands. Although everywhere we went, it seemed the view got even more amazing. The scenery in Italy really is exquisite. The houses, the ocean, the history, and else everything about it. If you ever get a change to go there, you have to visit the castle. Its right in the middle of Carini, and it’s beautiful. In Italian its called “Castello Di Carini,” which means; Castle of Carini. From our little house its about two minutes away by car, and five minutes by foot. Its really fascinating to see the inside.

The part that I hated about the vacation was the plane ride back. I supposed the lady at the counter who assigns you your seats, didn’t like me all that much. She gave me, what had to be, the worst seat on that airplane.

Everyone on the plane was comfortable watching movies on their personal TV’s that were right in front of them. But not me, my little TV didn’t work. The only thing it sh owed was a map with the route the plane was taking from Palermo, to New York. That’s what I watched for 9 hours. To top things off, the little kid in front of me put his seat all the way back. They whole flight he was almost on top of me. It would have made things a whole lot better if I could have put my seat back a little. But, my aunt was behind me sleeping with her feet up against my chair, so it wouldn’t go back. I didn’t have the have the guts to wake her up and make her move. I just let it go. I wished I would have brought my Ipod. Then I would have something to do, and I wouldn’t have been so bored, Lucky for me, it was back at my house in my room. That did me no good. My cousin sitting next to me had his, but of course, I wasn’t allowed to use it because I would “break it.” Then my other cousin sitting on the other said of me pulled out his PSP. I was so happy because I figured he would let me use it since I had nothing else to do. Instead he did exactly what I was afraid he was going to do. He turned it on and played until we landed. So basically; I sat in a plane for 9 hours and did nothing. While everyone around me was entertained and content. It was a horrible ending to an amazing vacation.

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