disclaimer: I have internet at the school, but it hardly works. Now that I have finished with classes I will probably only make it up once or twice per week, depending on my work schedule. I also forgot to load the pictures from my camera to my computer, and don't have it with me currently. I will get a good update here soon with pictures and all so you can see where I live!
p.s. I have already found my dream house.
Date: 21 June 2008
“I know you can be overwhelmed and you can be underwhelmed but can you ever just be whelmed?” "I think you can in Europe." I haven’t the slightest clue what I am feeling right now. One, my nerves have never been so high. Two, my brain seems to be slowing down. Three, I am no longer living out of a suitcase and that relieves me. I am happy to be here, sad to be here, nervous to be here, ready to be here, everything to be here. Amid all of my stuttering I did manage to make it to the Rome airport, next the Rome train station, on to a train headed to Florence, exit a train to catch a new one going to Siena, find but a broken pay phone, wait for 40 minutes until I found the nerves to ask the older woman then a gentlemen if one of them were familiar with Siena and finally if I could borrow a phone. Rita was outside waiting for me, lovely Rita.
Rita speaks strictly Italian and is already annoyed with slowing down her words, changing vocabulary, and to her dismay…barely getting a response. Rachel, Jenn and Jane have seemed to catch on to the language just fine. I joined them eight weeks into their stay, they leave in four, I remain for eight. These eight weeks better teach me to say, ‘Hello I am Rique, how are you’ (except I already know how to say that). As previously stated I am nervous, but the excitement is catching up with me.
Date: 25 June 2008
Five days into this summer experience and I feel as though I have been to enough school to last the term. I am relieved I only attend school for a week (three hours of language training per day can tire ones brain), but I am nervous because I only attend school for a week. I have yet to be informed what my internship will be, but I had a private lesson today where he taught me the entire history of Siena in two hours. While trying to translate his Italian into English and then process what he was saying, all I wanted to do was go home and rest. I made it through and surprisingly learned a lot. As hard as it is for me to understand everything I am catching on to bits and pieces and I anticipate being able to understand the majority of what is going on around me (in seven and a half more weeks).
Date: 27 June 2008
School’s out for summer! I suppose technically I still have school, as in I will be racking my brain to get this language down. No longer will I be attending three-hour classes, but I will spend plenty of time learning the language at my internship. I still have yet to find out what I am doing though. I need to come back in on Monday in hopes they will have something figured out. If not, free time for me. I am surprised at how quickly this past week past, so as long as I keep myself busy I will find the day disappearing and myself getting less homesick. I recall from a preparation class in the winter the effects of culture shock. I have most surely been culture “shocked.” It is all flowers and candy when you visit the country, then when you live in the country you see a completely different side. It is crucial to communicate, and when you lack that ability it causes for difficulty. Even with how much I love Italy, the language, the food, the people, I am still quite nervous.
I am going to look past all this and take this opportunity for what it is worth. How many opportunities does one get to live in foreign countries for, in my case, fifteen weeks? A long, yet most premium adventure.