Volume 14 No. 1

Fall, 1999

Our Stories: From Italy, Losing Friends
by Concetta Yakoubi
I'll never forget the day when my parents told me that we were going to leave my country forever. For me and my sister, it was hard to accept that we were going to move forever. We left all my friends, my family, and everything behind. I helped my mother to pack the suitcases. More than any other thing, it was hard to say goodbye to all my friends. Some of them cried and I cried too. Before we left, they organized a party for me and my sister. We played, made pictures, and said our last goodbye.
The day came to leave. In the morning, we got up really early, and we took a taxi to the airport. During the trip in the car, I was looking everywhere, and I said to myself that I’d never forget the place where I was born. In 30 minutes we arrived at the airport. Then we checked the suitcases and then went to wait for the plane. We were lucky because the plane arrived late and in that time I could call my friends to say goodbye for the very last time.
I was also excited because I like to fly. The plane started to go really fast and then it started to go up into the sky. We flew for eight hours. I was so tired and I was thinking the trip was never going to finish. Finally we arrived and then went through customs. Next we took a taxi straight to the hotel in Washington, D.C.
For the first days we stayed in a hotel. After a couple of days, my parents found a house to rent. The owners were so kind to me and my sister. We were lucky because they spoke Spanish. After a few days, we met a really, really, good friend. She's an Italian-American woman with a husband and three sons. The sons are older than me and my sister, but they're great because each time we go to see them we all play together and we watch movies. We spent Christmas and New Years with them. That was so cool!!
After two months we needed to start school. At first, I didn't care because I didn't know anybody. And then when I saw what was going to be my school, I was so surprised because it was so big. My school in Italy was no more than half of this one. I told my sister that I didn’t want to be here, but she said that I was going to make a lot of friends here.
Now I have been here in America for about six months. I've started school, and I've made a lot of good friends.
You know, the first week I was here in America, when I listened to the people talking, I was like "What are they talking about?" "Is that Chinese or what?" Now, I'm fine. I'm in the 4th level of ESOL and I'm doing well.
That's what I can tell you of my story. It was a little hard to write because I have some difficulties with my English. But that's fine.

Copyright Silver International 1999.