Quest for Italian Relatives, a true story
I worked for 30 years for a company and recently retired. All my life I have wanted to see Italy and visit the place of my grandparents, (all 4 of my grandparents migrated from Italy) but work kept me from searching. After I retired I began to search the Internet and used the web site "ancestry.com" to try to locate anyone with the same last name as my grandfathers. To my surprise I found thousands of people in Italy with the same last name. I further searched to find 32 people in Schiavi di Abruzzo with the same last name. (It took hours to look at all the thousands of names to find the 32 in Schiavi.) My husband and I decided to take a tour of Italy with a tour company and then on our own try to find relatives. Our plan was to knock on doors of those names we found in the Internet. We drove to Abruzzo and began asking directions to Schiavi. We were directed to go up a mountain. We drove up and up and finally arrived at the village.
We ate, we drank, we shared stories of the family in Italy and in America. We stayed with them (as they would not let us leave) for a few days. I hated to leave them. We all cried when we were leaving, and they begged my husband not to take me. Although, Italy was a beautiful site, there is nothing that can compare to the feeling of finding your roots, walking the streets your family walked, seeing how they lived, and discovering why you are who you are. My relatives are now coming to America. They have never been out of Italy, and barely out of the village, yet at 74 years old and older, they are coming to visit my mother and her siblings. I encourage everyone to search for their roots. Finding them has changed our lives.