My month in Italy

La Bella Vita – The Beautiful Life

La Fine

July 24th, 2011

After one amazing month, I’m back home. It’s good to be back in the states, but I miss Italy more than anything. I fully intend to go back to Orvieto when I can…this was far too good of an experience not to repeat. Thanks again to anyone who helped make it happen, and to everyone who kept up with this blog while I was gone. Arrivederci!

The End Of The Days

July 14th, 2011

Today I took my final for Italian 202, and tomorrow at 12:30 I’ll be done with classes here forever!  It’s a weird realization that I’ll be heading home in just a few days.  I’ve really grown to love this town, and I feel as comfortable here as I do at home, or in Fredericksburg.  All the people I’ve been traveling with are super fun, and I’m going to miss seeing them every day.   I’ve also made a few friends in Orvieto, including a man who owns a pastry shop, a lady who works at a pizza place, a man who works at a leather shop, and a couple american guys from culinary schools working abroad here.  My last week has been packed with trying to get everything done, buying last minute gifts, going back to the restaurants we like the most, and trying to hang out with everybody as much as we can.  It’s flying by, but I’m enjoying every second of it.

The Final Countdown

July 10th, 2011

So I realized this morning that I have less than a week in Orvieto.  That’s right…only about 6.5 more days.  That’s scary, and I’m trying my best not to think about it.  It’s been a really fun trip thus far, and although I do miss the states, I’m not nearly ready to leave.  It’s strange how at first it felt like a vacation…I kept thinking I was going to be back home in a few days and that I needed to do everything that week.  But now it feels more like I live here, and I’m in denial of the fact that now I actually do need to do everything this week.  It’s going to be a blur, but I’m looking forward to it.

It’s Kind Of A Funny Story…

July 6th, 2011

Let me preface this story:  our first week here we asked our teacher Alessandra if famous people from America came to Orvieto often, because it’s a very beautiful historic town, but it’s not very big and not very touristy.  She said many Italian stars did, but she didn’t know of any Americans.  Well…

Today after class we met up with our teacher to go inside the Duomo.  It was absolutely gorgeous.  It’s huge, and there are frescos (huge paintings) covering both small chapels on the sides.  And while we were leaving one of the chapels, a woman with a stroller passed us.  I turned to my friend and said “Carrie Bradshaw much?” because she looked very much like Sarah Jessica Parker.  And then we realized that it was, in fact, Sarah Jessica Parker.  With her husband Matthew Broderick, 3 kids, and 3 nannys.  Go figure!  We went outside the Duomo, and I snapped this picture of them leaving.

Other Important Things:

July 5th, 2011

First and foremost:  a huge thanks to everybody who made this trip possible, especially Ginger Harper and Seven Snoddy.  🙂

Second:  I’m not sure if most people realize this, but if you want to see bigger versions of the pictures I post, just click on them, and you can see more details.

Third:  Thanks for following!

2nd Semester

July 5th, 2011

So as of now I’m just past halfway through with my trip.  It’s a bittersweet feeling…it’ll be nice to be back in the states, but I really love Orvieto.  This weekend was absolutely hectic.  Friday we had our final exam, (because we’re covering 2 semesters of material in two 2 week periods) went to Lake Bolsena, Saturday we went to Civita di Bagnoregio in the morning and Florence in the afternoon, stayed in a hostel, and woke up Sunday and shopped around Florence.  So here’s the good part:  the pictures.

This is Lake Bolsena. We were expecting a tiny body of water. This is like an ocean! It even had waves! The weather wasn't too good, but it was still relaxing.

Oh yeah...I live there. This is a view of Orvieto from the bus we took to the lake. We're up on a's gorgeous!

This is Civita di Bagnoregio. It's a small city up on a hill, that the rest of the earth has eroded away from. They have amazing views over Italy.

Florence! We spent several hours going up and down streets buying things from vendors like this

The Duomo of Florence: This place is gorgeous. It's huge, and super intricate.

Just the other day we stumbled upon a pasticceria (pastry shop) that is amazing. I'm in love with these.

The Food!

June 28th, 2011

So…here’s the lowdown on the food (aka il cibo):  it’s all amazing!  That being said, I’m a pizza/pasta kinda girl.  But even their paninis, which are really just sandwiches, are really good.  Here are the highlights:

Everything is a little different here...Italy does the natural sugar deal. But Fanta is by far the most different. It's not neon orange, and it's 12% orange juice. And delicious!

I believe this is called a cortolino. It's a chicken sandwich with lettuce on it, grilled panini style. The first time I've even seen chicken on a menu.

This was my first food in Italy: a pizza margarita. It was absolutely delicious, and possibly the best thing I've had this far.

This has been my favorite pasta dish so far: really thick noodles with a slightly spicy sauce. It was amazing.

Last, but certainly not least, is gelato. In America they make it seem like gelato is this really dense, thick, rich ice cream. Here, it's kind of just ice cream. But with huge flavor.

A picture’s worth a thousand words….

June 26th, 2011

So this post must be worth a lot.  Long story short, our apartment has wifi, but I hadn’t been able to connect to it on my computer, just my iPod touch.  Today, I gave it another shot, and it worked!  It’s a miracle.  So this means you guys get a glimpse of what I’ve been up to.

This is the first day in Orvieto, after a 10 hour plane ride and a 3 hour nap

This is the door to our apartment complex. We live on the first floor, in a really nice place

This is the Duomo in Orvieto. It's a huge church, and it has mosaics all over the front of it

Today was the festival of Corpos Dominus, which was celebrated most of the week, and concluded today with a huge parade with people dressed up in costume

Hope you enjoyed it!  More pictures to come, if the internet keeps working =]

The Latest

June 24th, 2011

So…thus far I’ve had the most amazing pizza margarita, really good pasta with a spicy red sauce, and lots of gelato. Last night we went to my professor’s apartmet and cooked dinner: fresh pasta with bacon, tomatoes, and onions with tiramisu for dessert. We also got to get some fresh fruit at an open market, which was really nice. Today after class we all went to Orvieto underground and took a short tour about the wells and underground rooms people dug under their houses. It was amazing, just like everything else in this town. =)

I’m here!

June 23rd, 2011

Sorry it’s been so long folks. I’ve had very minimal internet access. So far in Italy I’ve had the best pizza, pasta, and gelalto I’ve ever had. Our apartment is really nice and classes are going well. More to come soon!

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