I was reminded that I really haven't shared with everyone back home what a normal day/week is like here in Florence! (Thanks for the reminder, Christie!) You may be surprised that my days and weeks are not full of art museums, vespa rides and gelato runs. Nonetheless, I hope this post is not a disappointment about life in Florence, but rather a look into my semi-average life here.
8:00 a.m. - Wake up, get ready for the day, eat breakfast (Same thing every day: toast with jelly, hard boiled egg, juice, yogurt and cereal), pray (Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8:30 a.m.I usually go to Daily Mass in Settignano. The old ladies there are the greatest!).
9:30 a.m. - Walk downstairs for Italian class (Yeah, I'm spoiled).
11:00 a.m. - Coffee break (I usually just drink juice. Even Italy can't turn me into a coffee addict)
12:30 p.m. - 3 hours of Italian class: Finito!
1:00 p.m. - Finally Lunch Time! (Why do they eat so late?)
2:00 p.m. - Theology of Pope Benedict XVI
4:30 p.m. - Done with class for the day! On Mondays we have a debriefing on the schedule of events for the week. Then it's time to run on the hilly streets of Settignano, exercise, check email/facebook, plan the next weekend trip, do my laundry (in the bidet), and on special days I take bus 10 from Settignano and go into Florence to explore, shop or run errands.
7:00 p.m. - Dinner! (Usually I'm famished by this time. Also, there is never a shortage of pasta at dinner! American food, Here I come!)
8:00 p.m. - Start homework, procrastinate some more, or maybe even Skype my family or Maggie!
11:00 - 12:00 p.m. - Go to bed and do it again! (Don't ask me what I did during those last few hours, I couldn't tell you)
Special Events during the week:
One week during the month we take 2 days and go into Florence for our Art and Culture class. We go to museums and churches around Florence to see the many beautiful works of art and historical sites.These days are always very interesting, but very tiring. Our teacher, Francesco, calls us "turtles" (Because we "walk too slow." I'm convinced he was a speed walker in his younger days. It shows) and tells us to "stop sleeping standing up!" It makes for an interesting day.
Monday nights we have an inspiring movie night. We have watched "The Pianist," "The Mission," "Francesco," and "La Vita Bella."
Wednesday nights we have a guest speaker who comes and talks to us. Usually it has to do with their field of work and how it relates to faith. We have heard from 2 Physicists, a midwife, a musician and an artist from Ireland. I have appreciated meeting so many faithful people who challenge us to live our faith and see God in even the smallest details of life through our respective vocations.
Thursday nights is pizza night! Dr. Pizza comes and teaches a group of students how to make pizza in the wood oven on the patio. Other students make tiramisu and then everyone enjoys the fruits of their labor! Two times this semester dinner is followed by a karaoke party. Good times.
And then comes the weekend! And that is how I have spent the majority of my time these past 8 weeks!
Today is the start of the last week I have here in Italy. On Monday I will head back to the U.S. to spend time with my family and friends for the holidays. This semester has been an amazing experience. I feel so blessed to have been able to have this experience. I have learned so much and had so many amazing experiences. Later I hope to reflect more deeply on this semester, but now my focus is on getting through finals. I can do it!
Oh look! Its 7:00 p.m. Dinner time!
P.s. Just for fun, here is the video that my Italian class made for extra credit. My Italian lip syncing skills have greatly improved these past few months!