Well, yesterday was the end of my first three week session here in Florence. I have never gone into an exam where I didn’t study at all for it. I already felt so prepared because the class really captivated my attention. And lets be real here, it’s Food, Culture and Society not aerospace engineering. After the final exam we had our final cooking lesson–risotto. I’ve never really eaten risotto but this recipe was so good and so simple. It took us about 30 minutes to make it which makes it a nice easy recipe to take back to school. I guess it should be said that a lot of my classmates are from the northern states. I happen to be the only one from the South, so they tend to mock my accent a little. Well, as Peter was starting to cook my group’s dish he left behind the onions to saute. So I yelled, “Hey Peter, what are you going to cook?” As soon as those words left my mouth the class in unison said “HAAYYY PEEEETERRRR” I would say that I was embarrassed but sometimes you just have to laugh at yourself.
After class, Jen and I moved into our new Italian abode for the next few weeks. Moving in Italy is quite interesting to say the least. Our cab driver almost got in a fight with a guy on a scooter because we were taking so long and the people waiting weren’t happy. Fun fact about our apartment, it’s the top floor apartment which means four flights of stairs up. Needless to say carrying three bags up the stairs was not what I consider fun. It was all worth it though because our apartment is pretty nice. I sent up some prayers the night before for air conditioning but that didn’t happen instead we got two fans each. The weather here has been about 90-95 AKA the inside of an oven at about 400 degrees. I’ve considered buying about five fans and keeping them on high but I don’t know how well I would be able to sleep.
Last night, Jen and I had dinner at La Giostra with my friend Ashlee that I met in my class. Let me tell y’all about this Wisconsin chick, she and I first bonded over our love for food, specifically croissants. She and I met up for a daily croissant before class everyday, actually. She also likes to consider herself a photographer with her fancy camera, even though when I asked her to take a picture of me on our field trip she primarily took pictures of my back or out of focus. She and I had quite the belly laughs during our stint here in Italy together.
One thing I’ve learned about the friendships you make while abroad is it’s more like a instant bond/family type connection. I guess your friends do actually become your family while you’re here. They’re the ones that you can talk about back home with and they understand, or if you’re feeling homesick nine times out of ten they have been there. I’m glad that I decided to stay but it’s tough to see some of the friends I’ve made leave to go back home. It’s also tough when you move out of your apartment and into a new one and leave behind three other roommates that have also become like family.
In the grand scheme of things the experiences, the laughs, the friendships that you make mold you to the person you are. Each person you meet leaves a footprint or a mark on your heart. I’m just honestly blessed to be apart of it all. Who would have thought I would make such great friendships in three short weeks. So to that I say cheers to the next chapter of Italia!
PS Jen and I finally made it to the Secret Bakery! Ashlee was with us waiting for about two hours but had to go back at 1:45 because her pick up time was scheduled at 5. The croissants were worth the wait needless to say!