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2.04 Coming to America

2.04 Coming to America

Vanessa Berovides

on 18 June 2014

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Transcript of 2.04 Coming to America

Coming to America
Dear family,
You've probably all wondered where or how I've been. Actually you're probably wondering if I survived the journey. The answer is yes, I did. I just haven't had the chance to write to you until now. I can assure you that it wasn't easy and I promise you that we'll be together again soon. For those of you reading my letter my name is Vanessa Berovides. I will start from the beginning and I will leave nothing out. So, this is my story, my story about immagrating to the new and improved land America. Ireland was my home, it was my home until potato blight came around. What is potato blight you might ask, well potato blight is a disease that rots potatoes. It had caused a famine in the 1840s. A famine is a drastic and wide reaching food shortage. Potatoes were our primary food source until the disease came along. So, during that time one million Irish had died of starvation, my great grandfather being one of them. It was devastating, I didn't want to die of starvation too, so I left. I left looking to start a new life, even though I was only thirteen at the time. My parents packed the few things that I had and told me to start heading for the ship that would lead us to our new life, and that they would come soon, but they never did come. I was all alone on the journey to America, my new home. There were people from my country looking to start a new life too, so most of us left on a ship. I was still looking for my family and I waited for them, but I couldn't wait for long, so I boarded the ship. It was scary for me to think of what was to come of my new life. I mean I was only thirteen, and I was all alone. Most of the journey I spent it in the steerage, it was at the bottom of the ship and had the cheapest accomindations. I went through weeks of sea sickness, weeks of wondering how my family was, and weeks of thinking that I wouldn't make it to the new land. Pretty soon I had finally made it to the new land. Ellis Island in New York Harbor, it was a forgien land to me. The first thing that happened when I got there was that I had to go through a medical exam, because they needed to make sure that I didn't have or bring any diseases, and if you did then they would send you back to your home land. Luckily I didn't have any diseases, and so my new life began. Although I was only thirteen I needed to look for a job, and maybe a small place to live. I had started working in a factory with other women. It didn't pay much and had long hours, but at least it was something. One of the women that worked with me there had let me live with her for a while until I was ready to buy my own place. I faced many difficulties like finding a job, earning a little bit of money but working for hours and then finding my own place to live, but I held my head high and had positive thoughts. One day I would be with my family again, and one day I'd start my own business. Now I'm 18 and I have my own place to live, and I have enough money to start my own business. I still haven't heard from my family, but that's why I'm writing this letter to them. Hoping to find them soon.
Vanessa Berovides
2.04 Coming to America
By: Vanessa Berovides
Full transcript