Modeled after public radio's "This I Believe" series, Sewickley Academy seniors share what they believe in as the final project of their Senior Seminar course.
"My Special Place" by Olivia
Olivia, a senior at Sewickley Academy, has lived in Pittsburgh her entire life but will be leaving next fall to attend Emory University in Georgia. She plans to study international relations in college and continue her love of traveling, with the hopes of going to Spain and living with a host family. Olivia likes swimming, gymnastics, and lacrosse. She is excited about going to her cabin this summer to continue making memories with her family.
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Below is the podcast's transcription:
I believe in a place that is 24 by 26 feet and still fits three families and my grandparents. I believe in being able to wake up each morning and see a lake in front of me. I believe in my cabin in northern Minnesota. For two weeks, for as long as I can remember, my family and I travel the seventeen-hour car ride to northern Minnesota each summer. We reach a log cabin thirty minutes from the nearest small town, without plumbing, that my grandpa built forty-five years ago, and all the stress of my life at home fades away. While most people would not be comfortable in such a place, it is exactly the type of place I need to escape the rest of the world at home. There is nothing quite as amazing as waking up to a bright blue sky and a view of the lake. The cabin is not just a place for relaxing though; it is the place where my mom's entire family can be together on the same lake. It is where I go fishing with my cousin as the sun begins to rise and set, and the place where I first learned how to waterski. Then after those long days out on the pontoon and after a big family dinner of burgers and fresh corn on the cob, I am able to look up at the stars and actually see the night. I can see more than just the few stars normally blocked by the city lights, I can see it all; every star of each constellation in the night sky.
Growing up, there was never a place I would have rather gone than the cabin. I am surrounded by a loving family in the most beautiful place in the world. The fact that my grandpa built it makes it even more special. He recently passed away and being there this summer made me think of all the memories I have of him throughout the years. When we were growing up, fishing was the one activity that was always done with grandpa. My cousins and I would get into the red boat and see who would catch the biggest fish for dinner that night. Northern pike and bass were the fish of choice for the kids and once grandpa put the correct lure or worm on our hook the waiting would start. Listening to grandpa’s stories and trying to hold onto the occasional bite would lead to one of the kids catching a keeper and the excitement would begin. After collecting enough fish for a large family dinner we would head back to the cabin and watch grandpa and the older cousins filet the fish while grandma began to get the beer-batter and rest of dinner prepared. Being close to my family has always been important part of my life and being able to share a dinner to which I know that I contributed makes it taste even better.
While I am at college in a few months, I know that I will not have to give up my special place. So I believe in having a place where I can be myself. I believe that everyone has that special place where they can forget about the rest of the world and concentrate on making themselves happy. I believe that family brings many of those things together and that without having memories of my family I wouldn’t be the same. This I believe.