Well, Brian and I are driving down the highway now on our much anticipated road trip to wild and wonderful West Virginia!
As I’ve been telling my friends and coworkers about this trip, a lot of folks have been asking… why West Virginia?
A lot of my family lives or has lived in the beautiful state, so it holds an extra special place in my heart. You see, my great great grandfather (I think that’s how it works… my grandpa’s grandfather), Caesar Barbera, immigrated to this wonderful country from Italy and went to work in the Coalfields of West Virginia in 1900. According to my late grandfather, George Barbera, “When he landed on Ellis Island, he was asked if he wanted a job. He said, ‘yes.’ He hopped a train and came to Thurmond. He had to walk to Glen Jean where the coal company gave him a job loading coal.”
My family has been rooted in West Virgina for a long time and in a way I still feel very rooted there as well.
I used to visit my family down is southern W.V. at least twice a year. All of my first cousins, except two, lived there… Here’s us taking a really awesome photo.
Dorks. I’m really rocking that sweet vest.
We were/are all a tight knight group. For almost as long as I can remember my grandpa and grandma were the rock and foundation of our little clan.
(Here they are centered, holding hands at our Barbera family reunion)
After their passing, it always felt a little strange to be going back without them there.
Now time has gone, and it’s been almost 3 years since I’ve had a proper visit… so I’m incredibly excited to visit the place that has given my so many wonderful memories. I’ll be staying with my cousin Leah and her family tonight who live on the Ohio/West Virginia border. Tomorrow, we will be packing up again and making the trip down to gorgeous southern West Virgina to stay with my Aunt Connie and Uncle Ron.
Brian and I are being treated to a white water rafting trip and zip lining in the canopy which will be awesome! What I’m looking forward to the most, however, is just spending time with the family… reminiscing about the good times and the great times to come :) Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend, y’all!