Jessica Hessom: Blog #1(Family Background)

My mother was full-blooded Italian which makes me 50% Italian even though I do not have the traditional dark hair and eyes that MOST Italians do.  My father is German and Irish so I definitely get the light skin and eyes from him.  However, my mother was not extremely dark-skinned either.  I always wondered why that was and finally my grandparents told me that they were both from middle parts of Italy.  They told me that Sicilians were very dark Italians because of how far south that the island is and they get more sun throughout the year.  My grandfather came to America from Calabria, Italy when he was 12 years old.  My grandfather always told me how much better that he liked America because of all of the violent and shady activities that occurred in Calabria because of the Calabrese Mafia.  Also, Calabria has been a victim of many earthquakes, which has left many towns partially destroyed and the citizens of the country are too afraid to rebuild in those parts.  However, my grandfather did used to tell me how beautiful the scenery was in Calabria.  The country was filled with hills and beautiful towns that were built at the tops of these extravagant hills.  My grandfather said that if I were ever to travel to Italy, he recommended that I go to visit his cousin’s guest house in Rome.  He said that there were many beautiful sights to see in Rome, such as the Trevi Fountain and the Colosseum.  

My grandmother was from Naples, Italy.  Her mother and father came to America from Naples when they were first married.  My grandmother never lived in Italy, but she did visit her family there a few times throughout her life.  She told me that Naples is a very beautiful place with much to do!  Naples is a very large, crowded, and crime infested like any other big city.  However, she told me that there are many tourist attractions, great restaurants, and architecture to see in Naples.  The Galleria Principe di Napoli is one of the many examples of the amazing architecture in Naples.  It is a must see attraction!!  My grandmother also told me that the food was very good in Naples.  Nowadays, the food there may be a little more commercialized because of how large the city is, but I am sure that it is still excellent!  I would love to visit Naples someday in the future!

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One thought on “Jessica Hessom: Blog #1(Family Background)

  1. judithgarcia says:

    Buona sera Jessica,
    Grazie mille per il tuo post. How lucky you are to have family connections to Italy from your mother’s side. You are right about pointing out that not everybody in Italy is dark-skinned or has black eyes and hair. In fact, it is typical to see northerners with blue eyes and blonde hair and there are different complexions and physical traits in central Italy. I hope you get the chance to visit Rome and Naples in the future. Keep practicing your Italian, 🙂

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