There are so many ways to answer this prompt. … where I am from: northern California gal living a southern California lifestyle … what I am from: a biracial background (Italian and African American) … the people who shaped me: a loving family … the places that have inspired me: my many adventures … the factors that make up who I am: only child. mix of public / private education. ex-competitive gymnast. sorority girl. television junkie. pescartarian.
While all of those things are interesting enough (or maybe not), I wanted to share a special bit of myself to address the prompt: Bertone, Italy.
Bertone is the little, itty-bitty town where my great-grandmother was born and raised. I was so lucky to be able to visit the town during the summer of 2009. The village is beyond small and includes just homes, a church, and a cemetery. No stores. No postal office. Few families live here year-round (the one website I could find puts the estimate at 10 people) but it is quite busy during the summer months. Busy as in maybe 100 people. And when they arrive they all park along the borders of the village as the streets aren’t wide enough to accommodate cars.
While I’ve only been to Bertone once, the village that my great-grandmother called home is very much part of who I am. I’m the great-granddaughter of an amazing woman who left this town as a teenager, immigrating to the United States. And remembering this gives me strength and warms my heart.
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