Italy Field Trip - My Family Travels


The best field trip in my entire life had to have happened last spring. As a four year Italian language student, I had an opportunity to fly over to Italy for ten days with my class. This was one opportunity that I could not pass up.

I am glad I went for I have learned to be more independent and live life to its fullest potential. In September, I begged my parents to let me go on this Italian trip by myself. My father has always been set on going to Italy with me and honestly I did not want him to go.

Do not get me wrong; I love my father. I just wanted to go by myself for the experience of living alone and taking care of myself. I finally convinced my parents to let me go on the journey with two of my best friends.

I was beyond pumped for this event to occur and I was counting down the days as the school year went on. Finally, March came along with the trip. Unfortunately we had to bring our luggage to school and sit in the first four classes before taking a bus to the J.F.K. Airport. Seventeen students all gathered in the hallway with their backpacks and suitcases. That moment was the last time I saw my parents and friends for a whole ten days.

We were led outside to the coach bus. I was anxious. I could not expect anything, for everything was new to me.

We walked into the airport. People all rushing around us with bags. I wondered where they were going and what they were going to do at their destination. Being an American in an airport after September 11th, I wondered if there were any terrorists in the building. Nerves set in as we were boarding the plane. I took the Dramamine as we began to get comfortable in the seats. For the next seven hours, I would be sitting in this gray leather seat that moved only an inch back. I fell asleep on and off until we landed in Rome. I was so excited my heart began to pound and I could not wait until I got off of that plane.

Italy was pretty much the same as America. Rome looked like NYC and the beaches looked like Long Island’s south shore. We visited the city of Pompeii and the hills of Sicily. We climbed Mount Vesuvius and indulged in gelato in the streets of Rome. We saw St. Petersburg church and looked up at the Sistine Chapel. It was amazing. The pictures of Italy did not even compare to what they looked like in reality.

Although I learned a lot about history and Italy, I think I learned more about myself. At that time in my life, I was in the process of recovering from anorexia. Anorexia is not just ‘not eating,’ as people see it to be. It is really a way of dealing with problems, stress, or anxiety. If the day were stressful, eating an apple would make me feel fat. Going to Italy without any of my family was a big step for me, which increased my recovering rate.

Italy is famous for its food and I knew that as soon as I heard about the trip. I knew that I would have to eat pizza and gelato and everything else that Italy was famous for. I prepared myself for the worst. I knew I would feel guilty about eating all those fattening foods but I was trying to think that the experience of eating pizza in Italy would outweigh my feeling fat. I tried really hard to overcome my obstacle and it worked. While I was over in Italy I was transformed. I was a new person who was able to eat anything she wanted without a worry in the world. I was not getting fat and I was enjoying myself. It was the best experience of my life.

I developed my eating disorder only a year previous to my trip. It was a hard road to recovery for it was not anything that could be physically fixed but I personally had to change mentally. My trip to Italy helped me out tremendously in my health and my life. It gave me experiences I will never forget. Just yesterday in class, we were talking about how my peer fell asleep with tissues in his nose on the plane ride there and wanted to get McDonald’s everywhere we stopped. It was a blast and I would definitely do it again if I had the chance to. Who knows? I might go backing through Europe one day. It is worth a shot, isn’t it?

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