Just two days after finishing her sophomore year, Emma Barrosa hopped on a plane with her family to Spain. This was the very start of a summer filled with much adventure and new beginnings.
The first day in Spain was spent traveling to Aiskorri-Aratz, which is a trail Barrosa and her family go to every year. This hike is a special tradition for them, as all Basque people complete this trail. The rest of the time spent in Spain was spent going to different churches and exploring numerous towns, such as Victoria.
The next destination for Barrosa was Italy. Upon their arrival, her family took a tour of the Brunelleschi Dome, where they admired the architecture and view. Of course, stopping for gelato afterwards is a must in Italy. Barrosa then went to sites such as the Uffizi Gallery all the way to the stunning Arno River.
After a long two weeks in Europe, Barrosa spent a week at home preparing for CONA, the Conference on National Affairs in North Carolina. Herself along with 25 teenagers were selected from California Youth and Government to compete through delivering different proposals. Upon arriving a week before competition, her group found conference rooms all over their hotel, speedily quizzing themselves and conducting interviews.
“It was really intensive. Every single day we wouldn’t get to sleep until eleven or twelve at night because we were doing so many practice speeches and rapid fire questions. We were having a great time and got to watch the presidential debates, all of us political geeks,” Barrosa expresses.
When asked if she could describe her entire summer in one word, Barrosa replied with “family.”
“The first part of my vacation was definitely visiting the family I have in Spain. That second part wasn’t meeting old family, or family I already had, but it was creating a new family with the friends I had at Youth and Government. That really sums up everything,” Barrosa smiles.