Catching up with Noëmi …
We finally got a chance to see the photos of our Exchange Student from Switzerland, Noëmi Schönenberger, throw the first pitch at the Arcata Ballpark. The occasion was our Kids, Crabs, and Rotary event, which doubled as our farewell party for Noëmi.
She had even more excitement the following weekend. On Friday, June 8th, her father Alex arrived for a visit; the next night was the Senior Prom; and Sunday was her 18th birthday! “The time just flew by,” she said.
… and Gracie!
I think it was coincidental, but our Outbound Exchange Student, Grace Lovell, returned from Chile on Noëmi’s birthday! Grace was at our last meeting, with her parents, Harriet and Brian, and she provided a great presentation on her year.
She was on the mainland in Talca for the first seven months of her adventure. Talca is about 150 miles south of Santiago, in the middle of Chile. She made many new friends, including other exchange students, her host families, classmates, and “even a llama or two,” she said. “I made some friendships that will last forever.”
Patagonia and the Atacama Desert were among the exotic places she was able to visit. Grace saw glaciers and a volcano and many new animals. Among these were llamas (of course) and penguins. But not just any penguins – these were Humboldt Penguins!
|President Scott with the Lovells and the Schönenbergers|
In April, Grace moved to Easter Island (or as she called it in her blog, “Easter-Freaking-Island!”. While she was there, she learned Rapanui – the native language of the island.
Although Grace never quite got the hang of soccer, she had a great experience. For more details of her entire year, mouse over to the sidebar and click on the link to her blog, “Exchange Student Grace in Chile“.
We had a very special Visiting Rotarian last Friday – Noëmi’s father, Alex! He exchanged banners with President Scott, then thanked us for taking care of his daughter. With Alex were Noëmi’s mother Daniela, and her brother Yannic.
We also had two Arcata Sunrise Perpetual Scholars give updates on their academic progress. Tom Salamunovich is doing well at Cal Poly, and Alesha Bellar is working hard in the Child Development Program at College of the Redwoods.
Craft Talk – Angelo’s Tall Tales
The Craft Talk allows us to get to know our newer Sunrisers, as they tell us about their lives and what led them to join our Club. Angelo Baciagaluppi told his story last Friday.
He was born in the Dominican Republic to an Italian mother and a Dominican father (or maybe it was the other way around). As a result, Angelo is multilingual. He now speaks English, Italian, and Spanish, but he says, “all with an accent!” (The “tall” in the tall tales heading refers to the fact that Angelo is 6’6″.)
He met his future wife Michelle when she was an exchange student in the Dominican Republic. They were married in the spring of 2000. “We’re still together,” he said. “Better, we’re still happily married!” Angelo and Michelle have two children, Diego – who is seven, and five-year-old Emma. In 2000, the family bought a house in McKinleyville, but they have since moved to Trinidad.
After moving to Humboldt, Angelo worked in many capacities for Six Rivers Bank, but he began working for Nylex in 2005 as a Network Engineer. His boss is Carlton Nielsen, who served as the 2010-2011 President of the Eureka Rotary. Carlton encouraged Angelo to join Rotary, and he found us (and vice versa).
EDITOR’S NOTE: This edition of the Sunrise Spirit would not have been possible without additional reporting by Sunrise Sleuth Janice Newman. Thanks, Janice!!!