Like I said in my last blog, the days just keep getting better in Florence. The sun making an appearance has also made the days just that much better. Here is what my third week in Florence was like:
Monday: Of course the day started off with classes. Monday's for me consist of Italian I, The History of Contemporary Art, and Discovering Florence Through Photography. Italian has been a challenge for me but I am slowly learning. After this blog I should actually get to studying since my first quiz is tomorrow! I know how to give some information about myself though:
"Ciao! Mi chiamo Christina Micheletti. Sono Americana. Sono di Mason, WI. Ho venti anni. Sono nata cinque Guigno mille novecento novanta due. Sono castana chiara. Ho gli occhi azzeri."
I am slowly getting there and probably have some spelling error, but I am getting there. My contemporary art course is going to be challenging. We have a new reading everyday, they aren't long readings but a lot of them are so deep and philosophical. I have a hard time reading in general, I swear I have A.D.D. The teacher is great though. I ask questions every class and he usually rephrases what I am not understanding. My favorite of all classes though is Discovering Florence Through Photography. First off, my teacher Gloria is seriously the best. I am going to be sad to not have her as a teacher when I leave Florence. There are only six of us in the class, but it is a lot of fun and I have already learned so much. We did photograms Monday, and I actually really liked how mine turned out. We have an assignment with the photograms where we have to make a story with at least four sheets of paper. I have so many ideas. I will post the final on here when I am done.
Monday night was the Wine & Cheese tasting at the school, which all Food as Culture students were supposed to attend. My Italian teacher, Matilda, was the one who put on the event. She gave us the "How to" of drinking wine. The first step of drinking wine is to "Look". This is why you want a clear glass and not a colorful wine glass. You're supposed to check out the color of the wine and make sure there aren't any particles of cork in the wine. Older red wine is more clear of translucent than a newer red wine. The next step is to "Smell". In doing this you want to swirl the glass a little then smell it. Analyze what it is you're smelling, like if there is berry smells or flowers, etc. The final step of course is to TASTE the wine. During the class we learned that there are three phases in the tasting stage: The attack phase, the evolution phase, and finish. Since being here I have tried to get into drinking wine, but it's just not the drink for me. I really hope I can get use to it though because a glass with your meal is actually really good for you and helps you digest better. We got to try three different types of wine (and of course I forgot the names). I tried the first two and only had a sip of the third one. The wine tasting wasn't until 7 and I hadn't eaten anything since noon, so the two glasses I had was enough to get me a little dizzy. That's when I started chowing down on all the cheese. They were both really good cheeses, she never told us what kind they were but I am on a mission to find them again!
Tuesday & Wednesday: Tuesday is usually a pretty chill day for me. My only class of the day is from 3-4pm, which is Italian Renaissance Art History. Wednesday is the same classes as Monday, except I also have an Arts & Culture Seminar. There really isn't much time to do anything else during the day on Wednesdays, but I love that I stay busy the whole day.
Thursday: My favorite day of the week. Not because it is the last school day of the week but because one of my favorite classes is on Thursday; Food as Culture with Tina. Tina is like our second mother. We went to the two markets: Sant' Ambracio and Market Centrale. I encourage anyone who travels to Florence to buy your groceries from the markets. The food is amazing. Amazing is an understatement actually, words can't describe how wonderful it is. We started off at the Market Centrale. We just tried a bunch of different food there like some kind of weird meat, some fried fish, biscotti, and a few other things. We actually made it on TV apparently. While we were eating fish, these two people were watching us and they had a camera. The camera man started talking to Tina and then she asked our group, "Which one of you had the Italian last name?" and I said "I do, Micheletti." Then they filmed me finishing off the plate of fried fish and me and the classmates saying "Finito!" After Market Centrale we went to the Sant' Ambracio market. This is the market where the real Florentines go. The other one has a lot of tourists. At this market we sat down and had some lunch. I would tell you what we ate but our teacher just ordered a bunch of random dishes for us to try. There were five courses and then dessert. One of these days I am going to explode. The food is so unbelievably good though. After that myself and two other classmates had to run from the market to the San Lorenzo Church so we wouldn't be late for Italian Renaissance class. We ended up being late anyway and didn't make it in time to buy our ticket for the museum. We get in free with our museum cards anyway so I can go another day. After that, we headed to the Medici Palace. It was beautiful. I usually listen to our teacher really good when she talks about the churches and museums we are in, but I am also in awe over everything!
Friday: I got up early and went exploring on my own just to get the feel for Florence a little bit more. I headed up to the Piazzale Michelangelo (I've been there like three times now). This is one of my favorite places to go. The view is amazing, and since the sun has finally come out, it has made the view ten times better. I walked even farther until I saw what looked like a church. I walked up even more stairs to find I was at the San Miniato al Monte (St. Minias on the Mountain). I learned that it is one of the highest points in the city. I didn't go inside the basilica because I wasn't even sure where I was or what I was looking at. I would love to go back another day though. It was extremely beautiful, and another great view of Florence. I walked to the Ponte Vecchio on my way back and was trying to figure out if I wanted to go to Le Cascine Park but I was tired by that point from all the hills and I had a good couple of hours of walking in. On my way back home, I had to stop at Vecchio Forno to get myself some kind of treat. I ended up getting this kind of pizza like thing with ham and cheese. Friggin' delicious. My favorite place. I bummed around the rest of the night and skyped with my brother, sister, Kelleen (my brother's girlfriend), and her kids. It made my
Saturday: Another day of exploring. I got up and ran for an hour early in the morning, relaxed until noonish, then went on another adventure. My assignment for photography is to take pictures of textures using the assigned aperture and shutter speeds. I brought my camera to Le Cascine Park and enjoyed the amazing sunshine. Everything about that walk was just great. Although, seeing people in love makes my heart melt, it was awkward seeing as many people making out in the park as I did. PDA seems to be acceptable in Italy. It's amazing all the elderly couples I see at the park holding hands though, it's really cute. Nothing could bring me down that day (Or at least until I picked up my invoice for school. Ha, ya gotta love school payments). Other than that, Friday was fantastic.
Today, I started my day off by relaxing for a bit then studying for my Italian quiz tomorrow. I finished my readings for all my classes and my film for photography. Been trying to plan out the story I am going to make for photograms. I have something cute planned, we'll see if it turns out. It was warm out today, I am hoping the spring weather is deciding to come early. I wouldn't mind sunshine all this week! I will hopefully have some good adventures this week to share with you. A group of girls and I are planning a weekend for the Amalfi Coast sometime in February. I also have to start planning my trip to Rome since the trip through the school got cancelled. :( Excited for another week of school!