Punzabo Winner Feels At Home in China (June 2009) | My Family Travels

The winner of the June 2009 Punzabo Award (and $100) is Sara Portesan. Her story, “At Home in China,” was the highest rated article on travelBIGO for the month of June. In her story, Sara discusses her trip to China with a friend’s family, where she learned how different our two cultures are, and how some things, like a smile, are universal symbols of friendship.

Born and raised in Lynwood, Washington, Sara is now 18 and will be starting her freshman year of college in the fall at Whitman College. Although unsure of what her major will be, Sara says, “If I could write stories, travel, and/or draw for a living, I would be very happy.”

In college she is looking forward to learning a new language, hopefully Japanese, and is excited for a new adventure. Growing up in Lynnwood has been a great experience for her, since so many great things are nearby including beaches, mountains, great shopping, and the city of Seattle.

Since her trip to China, Sara has continued to travel, having just returned from a family trip to Italy. While in Italy, Sara and her family visited the area where her grandfather was born, as well as other great places throughout the country. She was able to see major tourist destinations like Rome, but also lesser-known areas like Ceregano, which she really enjoyed.

Currently working as an intern at the Woodland Park Zoo for the second year in a row, Sara is having a wonderful time, working with children, and learning about zoo life, becoming familiar with all of the animals.

Sara is very appreciative of earning this honor, especially since her essay was picked by other readers! “This reader’s choice award makes me more confident in being able to connect with people through writing.” We congratulate Sara Portesan on a job well done.

Help pick next month’s winner (Punzabo Award rules for travel journal) by rating all the stories you read on travel BIGO. And remember, you can be next!

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