On Mondays my after-school activity is choir. The choir I do is for grades 2 and 3. At the end of the year, the choir goes on a special trip.

At 9 in the morning we went on a bus and drove to a school where we were going to perform a concert. I thought it would be in a lunchroom or gym, but it was in a little courtyard under olive trees. After that, they gave us ice cream, even though it was only 11 in the morning.

With Darcy, Eve, and Tatiana in the hull of one of the ancient boats.

After that we took the same bus to a boat museum on Lake Nemi. In Ancient Rome times, one of the emperors, Caligula, built these huge boats in the lake, with marble floors and mosaics and gold.  They were apparently party boats of some kind. The boats sank long ago, and years later they were found at the bottom of the lake.

So in the museum they used to display those two boats. But during World War 2, someone came in and put a fire in the museum so the boats aren’t there any more. But there are pieces of the mosaics and anchors and other parts of the boat to see. In the museum, since it is always empty, Mrs. Short, our choir teacher, had us perform a song that was particularly sad because the boats were burned. It’s called The Swan. She posted a movie of us singing in the museum to YouTube. Here is the link if you’d like to listen to us sing.

Then we took the same bus to Lake Albano, which was once a volcanic crater and is also where the Pope’s summer castle is. We had lunch on the beach, and then we went in the lake to swim. It was very cold and the sand was very mushy so people were screaming and shouting. In some places the sand was sticky. My friend Darcy was wearing Crocs and they got stuck in the sand and I swam under and found them.

We stayed in the water for about an hour, playing. My teacher, Mrs. Short, went in the water too. Then we got out to dry. They had real beach chairs and beach umbrellas. So then me and my friends just lay there and sunned ourselves. Then we sang a concert on the beach in our swimsuits.

After that we got dressed and the grownups brought us more ice cream!

I was looking forward to this day so much, and it was even better than I expected!

-Nell

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