Monday, September 20, 2010

at this point in my life.

I've been home for five, almost six months. I already wrote the "goodbye" post. So what brings me here? Why do I feel the need to leave one last blog entry?

The reality of Italy didn't complete hit me until I set foot on Goucher's campus in late August. I didn't really experience intense culture-shock returning to the U.S. and I had one of the most rewarding summers working at camp yet. Even in July, when people would ask me, "How was Italy?" and expect stories to flow effortlessly out of my mouth, I had no idea what to tell them. "It was great!" was probably my answer 95 percent of the time. If you caught me on a good day, you might have gotten a quick anecdote about the Scot who called me "Big Rouge" in Rome (yes, this really happened). I honestly had no idea how to describe those three wonderful, fleeting months of my life.

And now I'm here. Back in the place that let me know Accademia dell'Arte actually exists. We're currently on week four of classes, and I have very few complaints. Reconnecting with people I haven't seen since fall semester, or in some cases sophomore year, has been fun to say the least and all my classes are going smoothly. I will also say there have definitely been moments I've wished I were eating lunch on the grass outside the Villa with Claire playing guitar (I know, so cliché) or laughing histerically about some ridiculous thing Mitsuru made us do during Butoh week or even dancing with sweaters. I miss having Tuscany at my finger tips (who wouldn't?). But still, I'm glad I came back to Goucher and went to Italy when I did.

So... how was it?

Aside from me understanding more about what it takes from a dancer to move in a way that looks fluid and effortless, I have been more aware of my surroundings and have a greater appreciation for those around me. I have learned that everything works out even when you can't even imagine how. I feel more solid as a person. More grounded and sure of myself and what I believe in. I am more me now.

Does that answer your question?

Sunday, May 2, 2010


This is not going to be a post about how Italy/Europe is better than the U.S. At least I hope not.

I'm home! After the last week at school, which consisted of three performances and very emotional goodbyes, my dad and I set off in his rental car for a bed and breakfast in a small town called Cuna, outside of Siena. From there we drove to Florence for three days until we flew to Boston on Friday afternoon. We were lazy tourists, meaning we went to museums, but only for an hour before we decided to wander the streets and stumble across some gelato. Even though I started missing home a lot towards the end of the semester, it was so nice not having to go straight back after such an intense three months. A five day buffer was definitely necessary- at least for me.

After getting two bottles of wine and three cans of olive oil taken away from me (TSA, you suck), I sat on a plane for eight hours and traveled back in time. Literally. If you've ever flown from east to west for a long enough period of time, you'll know what I'm talking about. The sun just doesn't go down when it's supposed to and sleeping is difficult. The movies weren't working, so after I finished my book (the curious incident of the dog in the night-time), I just sat, listened to my ipod, and tried to process the past three months.

To make a long story short (because many of you will get the long one later), Italy and I had a love/hate relationship. Mostly love, though. The hate part really wasn't even hate, but more like "dislike for a little bit." I guess what I'm trying to say is there were way more positives than negatives to my semester. More pluses than minuses. And that is a good thing.

The performance we had in Cortona was definitely a perfect culmination of the work we had done in one of our core classes. And as always, it's wonderful to have the opportunity to perform on stage for the general public in addition to your friends and family. Despite the fact that we resented how thrown together we felt the show was, I don't think it would have worked any other way. It was a true Italian experience, to say the least.

Saying goodbye to people you've lived, worked, and played with for three months is never easy and I still feel weird waking up each morning and going down into my kitchen alone instead of the mensa full with sixteen other faces. We all got along really well and they are the ones who made the program what it was. Hopefully, there will be a few reunions next year, since some of our schools are relatively close on the east coast.

Slowly, but surely I'm adjusting to home. Running errands yesterday was weird and I think I might have looked like I was walking through the grocery store in a daze, but in a few days, everything will be back to normal. Summer is here, which means a lot of Bikram Yoga, visiting and hanging out with friends, and taking dance classes whenever I can before I go to camp for another summer. Then it's senior year, and well, let's not talk about that.

Since I'm home and this was a blog dedicated to my study abroad experience, this is the last post, so I hope you've enjoyed reading up on my adventures.


You were great. Maybe I'll see you again sometime.


for your listening pleasure.

and viewing pleasure.

Monday, April 19, 2010

check this out.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

lessons learned.

There is a book in the living room in which past ADA students have left pages of wisdom, inspiration, or whatever they feel like. Tonight, as a little activity of sorts, we all made our own pages to add for future ADA generations.

Here are a few of the entries that particularly stood out to me:

"Move in every direction simultaneously." -Scott

"Yes, it is impossible. But we are dancers, it is what we must do." -Mark

"Sometimes you are the person who cures, sometimes the person who is cured. Sometimes you fall and sometimes you catch. But you have to learn both roles." -Gianni

"You are enough!" -Claire

Everyday you must...
Take a deep breath of the freshest air you can find, touch somebody, and dance.

Remember that...
Beauty is something unique and spontaneous.

And always...
Enjoy your time in the sun.

Let happen.

Other important (or not so important) life developments include:

1. We're performing in Cortona next week!
2. To promote the performance, we're also performing on ITALIAN TELEVISION. Craaaazy!
3. My parents visit soon!
4. I went to a wine tasting yesterday.
5. I should be studying for my Italian final, which is tomorrow.
6. I played Ariel (from The Little Mermaid) in an Italian skit. Big surprise?
7. I only have ten days left. Fastest three months ever.

Why does time fly by so fast?

Monday, April 5, 2010

the five.

Cinque Terre was amazing. By far my favorite weekend in Italy. We hiked through all of the five towns on Sunday and took our time to relax and enjoy the scenery. I wish I could put pictures up for you to see, but my computer's full, so they might not be up until May.

Besides that, there's not too much to update you on except that my package finally got here (it was shipped on February 20), my hair is getting ridiculously long, and after fifteen or so years of being convinced I hate peanuts, I discovered I really do like them.

I guess they don't lie when they say study abroad will change your life.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

just for now.

Last weekend, the school paid for all of us to go to Naples. We all stayed at La Carafa di Madalonni, a beautiful bed and breakfast that used to be an Aristocratic home, where our rooms were gorgeous to say the least. On Saturday we all (the dance and theatre students) took class for four hours in a ballroom ten minutes away, which was a lot of fun and went by surprisingly fast. Over the course of the weekend, I devoured three whole pizzas and loved every bite, but by Sunday, I was ready for some other carb-filled food. Pasta maybe? On Sunday we took the train to Pompeii, which is probably one of the coolest places in Italy. Looking back, I had a great weekend, but I wouldn't say Naples is my favorite city in Italy. We were all warned numerous times before leaving to pay extra attention to our surroundings since the crime rate is high, so we were more or less on edge all weekend. Luckily, everyone made it back safely to the villa after stopping to get kebabs/gelato for dinner, which is turning into a post-weekend travel routine.

Classes this week are relatively tame and then its a three-day weekend in Cinque Terre. To quote Rick Steves, the travel guide genius, "There's not a museum in sight. Just sun, sea, sand (pebbles), wine, and pure, unadulterated Italy." Can I go there now, please? Hopefully the forecast will shift from rain to sun before Saturday, since the main attraction is hiking through the five towns. If not, I guess I'll pack my rain jacket? Oh wait, it's in my package that's been stuck at customs in Milan since March 1. Never have anyone send you contact solution overseas, because apparently it's chemical.

Now I'll leave you with a quote I stumbled upon recently:

The compelling thing about making art, or making anything I suppose, is the moment when the vapourous, insubstantial idea becomes a solid there, a thing, a substance in a world of substances.
-Audrey Niffenegger

Monday, March 15, 2010

mamma mia.

Spring break is over and we’re already into the second half of the semester. Our trip to Greece had a bumpy start when we were advised by Dean, the receptionist at the Student and Traveler’s Inn, that it’s not smart to visit the Islands this time of year because everything’s closed and the weather isn’t warm enough. After our first “family” meeting over some snacks at a nearby restaurant, we decided that instead of going to Santorini for four days, we would see what Athens had to offer.

Although we were disappointed that we wouldn’t get a chance to wear our bathing suits and get sunburns, the trip ended up being great. Our very eclectic group had the ability to make the best of every situation and roll with the punches. We learned that plans really do change, and even three pre-trip meetings won’t warrant an accurate itinerary. Highlights of the week include: going to Nafplio and climbing countless steps to the fortress on the warmest day we had, discovering The Art Foundation (a really cool bar that only locals would know about), buying handmade Greek sandals from the famous “Sandal Making Poet”, and playing mafia and essence whenever we had down time. We also went to the Acropolis, the National Archaeological Museum (whoa, old marble stuff!), and on a three island day cruise to Hydra, Poros, and Aegina.

Now a few fun facts/stories about Greece:

- You can buy the most ridiculous souvenirs (if you can even call them that) on the street in Athens. We saw miniature, mechanical, dancing donkeys that jolt back and forth, giant lighters, light up stick things, miniature mega phones, and really scary dolls. No, I did not buy any of them.

- Greek restaurant owners try really hard to get you to eat at their restaurant. Luckily we had Claire and Brian to bargain down our dinner prices. One night we managed to get free bread (instead of paying a euro per person), unlimited wine, and any entrée we wanted for only 10 euro. Whhhaaaaatttt?!

- The nicer buses that take you longer distances do NOT have bathrooms. I discovered that it’s best not to down a Coke before a three hour ride to Nafplio unless you want to pee your pants. Don't worry, I didn't pee my pants... that would've been really bad considering I only packed two pairs (one of which ripped in the crotch-ish area when I was climbing some rocks on the last day. Oops). I'm definitely over-sharing in this bullet, sorry.

There are definitely more "facts", but weird souvenirs, food, peeing, and ripping pants are the only things that seem to come to mind right now. Hopefully these will be helpful to know if you ever find yourself in Greece.

(One of my favorite pictures I took. Courtney, Claire, and Emily by the fortress in Nafplio.)

So yeah, Spring Break was the bees knees, but now I’m back in Arezzo and back to work. After being in another country for a week, I’ve developed a newfound appreciation for Italy. I missed the gorgeous countryside I get to look at everyday, the pasta, and the relaxed Italian mentality. Today, after ballet, I walked to Coffee O’Clock (the closest thing to a Starbucks), ordered a cappuccino, and dove into this week’s philosophy reading. Since Tuscany is starting to warm up, the half hour walk back to the villa was very pleasant. It was nice being alone for a while after having constant company for seven days and I had a chance to just stop and think about things.

I have no big plans for this weekend as far as traveling goes. Liz and Perry, two of my friends from Goucher, are planning on visiting Arezzo, so it will be nice to see them. If the weather’s nice, I’ll probably go to the market and pick up some fresh fruit, pecorino (the best cheese ever), and proscuitto.

I don’t like closing blog posts, so listen to this song instead.

Monday, March 1, 2010

asleep on a sunbeam.

After a very sweaty four hours Friday morning (modern and African), Courtney and I quickly showered, packed, and made our way to the train station to go to Rome. Lunch was a delicious kebab from “the kebab place” where the woman recognizes us and sometimes gives us free bakalava.

The train ride was fine. Courtney and I accidentally bought regional train tickets (the one that takes longer, but is cheaper) and got on the faster, more expensive one. Everything worked out though, and we arrived to Roma in one piece.

Compared to Arezzo, Rome is huuuge! The train station itself was a bit overwhelming, but seeing Liz’s (our friend who we were visiting) blonde hair through a sea of brunettes was WONDERFUL. After reuniting after about six months, we went to her apartment to drop off our stuff and rest for awhile. We had been going nonstop since 8 am, so a quick nap was much needed. We ate dinner at a place called Le Fate (The Fairies) where they have a student menu. Only ten euro for two courses, dessert, and wine! The coolest part of our dining experience was having two bag pipers dressed in kilts come in the restaurant to play. The whole city, in general, was full of Scots because they were playing against Italy in a rugby match on Saturday. This made for entertaining encounters at Campo, the square where most University students hang out on weekends. And in case you were wondering, Italy won the match.

The three of us got our first taste of spring weather on Saturday as we made our way through the city. Laying outside the Galleria Borghese at noon in 65 degree weather was just what I needed. Just walking around as we pleased without the pressure of hitting every major tourist location was perfect to say the least.

Liz made us dinner Saturday night with ingredients she bought from a market near her apartment. Everything I eat here is so good that I may just have to get everything imported from Italy once I go home. If only that could actually happen.
Courtney and I got back to Arezzo around six last night, grabbed another kebab from the same place (she loves us) and headed home to the villa. All this week we have Butoh (a Japanese dance form) for about six hours a day. No complaints so far!

In other news, Greece countdown= five days. Whaaatttt?!

In other, other news, even though I’m having a great time here, I miss people. A lot. Maybe some of you will be receiving post cards soon. Keyword: maybe.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

velvet pants.

yesterday in dance performance, giorgio's brown, crushed-velvet pants ripped right down the butt seam when he was demonstrating something. google images doesn't have a good example of brown, crushed-velvet pants, so just know that they were definitely one of a kind.

we had pasta for lunch and dinner today.

i'm going to rome this weekend. roma roma ma-a! yes, lady gaga.

greece hostels are officially BOOKED. so, so, SO pumped! if you google image "greece," this is what you get:

that is all.

also, i wonder who reads this. it's not private and the link is on my facebook page, sooo... yeah. i hope you like it. if you don't, that's okay. i eat more gelato than you do.

Monday, February 22, 2010

electric feel.

you have to love dancing to stick to it. it gives you nothing back, no manuscripts to store away, no paintings to show on walls and maybe hang in museums, no poems to be printed and sold, nothing but that single fleeting moment when you feel alive. it is not for unsteady souls.

-merce cunningham

Friday, February 19, 2010


last night was our second cabaret, an evening where we can all show each other what we've worked on. the theme for this one was that we had to incorporate material from our classes. all the dancers got together and performed a structured improv. one of the girls will post a video on youtube/facebook soon, so you can all see! other acts included the mfa students doing a tribute to brian burroughs, a visiting professor from ireland who we miss every day, the undergrad theatre kids, claire and jessica being absolutely hilarious, and jasmine playing the guitar/singing a few songs she wrote.

the best part of the night was that students from oklahoma who are also studying in arezzo came to the villa. it was nice to see new faces, speak some inglese, and perform for strangers. a few of them stuck around after the show and i think sometime soon a bunch of us will hang out.

in other news, i currently know three chords on the guitar. i also got a little cough/cold thing, which blows. a bunch of us are sticking around arezzo for the weekend to relax after the past two weekend trips, so i'll have time to recuperate.

but before that, ricardo is throwing mensa part part deux. wahooo!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

ocean of noise.

Venice. Whoa my god. We left right after ballet on Friday after picking up some snacks and pizza for the four hour ride. After arriving at a train station outside of the actual city, we made our way to our hostel, dropped off our bags, and took a shuttle into Venice.

For those of you from Goucher/Baltimore, think Fells Point on Halloween. The streets were full of people dressed up in gorgeous, elaborate costumes and masks. It was basically one giant party in the Piazza di San Marco. After getting all we could out of the night, we caught our shuttle back to the hostel around three in the morning, and somehow managed to get enough sleep for the busy day ahead of us.

I woke up at eight to get ready to leave around nine. Five of us hit up the usual tourist attractions: Palazza di San Marco, the Basillica, and the Guggenheim (my favorite by far). We also took a leisurely boat taxi ride down the Grand Canal, which was beautiful to say the least. Unfortunately, my camera ran out of juice so I don’t have any pictures to prove I was there. Hopefully once it’s warmer and calmer (without Carnevale), I’ll make a second visit.

A few of us got back to Arezzo around one in the morning after a very interesting and chaotic journey to the train station. All I’ll say is that it involved getting lost in crowds, running to and in train stations, getting on the wrong train, and then leaping over people’s luggage to finally get on the right train. I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to be sitting on a train in my entire life. The whole mess also proved that everything always works out somehow.

So that’s Venice in a nutshell.

In other news, two girls hosted an impromptu jazz class Thursday night since we didn’t have any work due the next day. Naturally, we dressed to impress in our finest 80s/crazy workout gear. It was nice to de-stress and just dance like a bunch of crazies. I felt like I was at the ICS (camp reference. perry/mac i know you're making fun of me and i don't care).

Now, after a long week of classes and an exciting weekend trip, the Villa Godiola is without hot water. I haven’t showered since Thursday night, but at least I feel rested after sleeping for twelve hours. Courtney and I plan on heading into town later for dinner and then I’m going to go to bed to get ready for the week.

Oh yeah, it snowed a little here. Nothing compared to the blizzard at home, though.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010


i'm tired and still have seventy pages of plato to read, but i just wanted to post this mini conversation really fast:

- i'm learning how to play the guitar reallyyy, reallyy slowly.
- so you can cover lady gaga songs?

hah! i really am learning, though. a girl here knows how to play and every once and a while she'll show me a few chords. it's tricky, but fun.

okay, plato time.

Monday, February 8, 2010


these were taken by jesse, a staff member at the accademia. we all wrote three separate things on three pieces of paper and hung them on an olive tree.

1. write something you've learned about someone here.
2. write something you like about yourself.
3. write something you want to learn while you're here.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

i'm gonna be (500 miles).

A week had gone by and most of us hadn’t left the villa except to go to ballet twice. Even though we all know ADA is a different type of abroad program which requires extreme focus, by Friday we all started getting a little villa fever.

So off we went to Florence on Saturday. Initially drawn by the Chocolate Fair, this would be the perfect opportunity to explore another Italian city. After arriving, getting lost, and dropping our bags off at the hostel, we were off.

The chocolate fair was soooo good. So good you were literally surrounded by chocolate and could smell it in the air. I tried a lot of free samples, drank a cup of melted chocolate, and bought a small bag of six assorted truffles. I don’t even like chocolate that much, but I think I do now.

Shopping, dinner, and gelato were next. Nothing too blog-worthy happened here. I spent money and ate things.

Afterwards, all nine of us ended up going to Space (a discoteca) to have fun and dance, yada yada yada. I learned that Italians are creepy and Australians are crazy. And no matter what people say, I love Lady GaGa.

Today we checked out of the hostel, grabbed cappuccinos, met two guys from California backpacking around Europe who spent the night in a carousel by the duomo, and said “hey” to David. Michelangelo’s David. THE David. You’d think the museum it’s in would be big and obvious for tourists to find, but it’s just a hole in the wall. After passing it within the first fifteen minutes, we proceeded to search another hour before realizing it had been under our noses the whole time. I guess that’s part of traveling, right?

Now, after purchasing a leather jacket from a nice man named Lapos, and riding a train for an hour back to Arezzo, I’m ready for dinner at a pasta place Scott, the founder of ADA, claims is life changing.

Next weekend: Venice for Carnival.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

let it be.

If you haven’t noticed by now, all my posts are titled after songs. I did this for two reasons: 1. It means I don’t have to be clever and think of one. Instead I just go digging through my itunes library for a song that applies and 2. Grey’s Anatomy does the same thing with their episode names and I like it. I mention this now because I really didn’t want to title this one after the famous Beatles song— way too cliché. I had to, though, because it’s just way too perfect for what I’m about to talk about.

Yesterday was our first day with Giorgio Rossi. This name didn’t mean too much to me before coming to ADA (Accademia dell’Arte), aside from a few previous ADA dancers telling Courtney and I how much we will love him, so don’t worry if you’re wondering who he is. All you need to know is that he is wonderful. Half Italian, half Swiss, around 50 years and not intimidating in the slightest, Giorgio is constantly reminding us to just “let happen.” If you know me at all, that alone could explain to you why I love this man. His english isn’t the best, but instead of the language barrier making it difficult to learn from him, it does the complete opposite. Having a limited vocabulary forces Giorgio to strip concepts down to their most simplistic form, causing us to think differently about the movement we’re making with our bodies as we dance. Instead of worrying if your toes are perfectly pointed or if your arm is at the right angle, just do what you’re doing, enjoy it, and have that be enough.

If all of that flew way over your head, sorry, but this is a blog about me dancing in Italy. It was bound to happen sometime.

This weekend I’m going to Florence to see a show and explore a certain chocolate fair of sorts. It’ll be nice to escape the Arezzo bubble for awhile before I get back to write a philosophy paper and choreograph something for the next cabaret.

I haven’t bought Juno yet. But don’t worry, I will soon.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

up on the roof.

the view from the roof of the teatrino (the large studio/rehearsal space). best thing ever at sunset (BTEAS).

Saturday, January 30, 2010

after an afternoon.

I just got back to the Villa Godiola after spending the afternoon in Arezzo at the Saturday market where you can find anything from proscuitto to scarves for dieci (ten) euros or less. Pretty pretty sweet. My friend, Morgan, and I used our new Italian skills and ordered “uno panino con proscuitto e pecorino, per favore.” at a deli. 2,50 euros. SO good.

Allora (so), now I’m back at the Villa to relax until dinner. After a long first week of classes, I’m happy to just sit back and read… or update this blog.

There are a few things I’ve learned after spending a week or so in Italy:

1. Italians have no fear when crossing the street, therefore, neither should you. Just go. If una macchina (a car) is coming, they will stop. In Rome, I’m pretty sure it’s a whole different ball game.

2. Don’t order chocolate gelato unless you’re really into chocolate. It’s so rich, it’s black. I stick with the caramello and nutella flavors.

3. Coffee to-go doesn’t exist. If you want a cappuccino or expresso, be prepared to sit and enjoy it. This is definitely a nice change from the American way of running into Starbucks, grabbing a tall vanilla latte and driving off to the next thing.

4. Italian women love shiny, puffy coats. I see them everywhere usually in black, gray, or a deep purple. Sometimes they'll even have some fur trim on the hood. Definitely not my thing. Sono Americana.

Classes are wonderful. I dance four to six hours every day and am learning Italian little by little. This week we had modern technique with Rita, who speaks very little english, tarantella with Gianni and ballet with an Italian ex-ballerina who can't pronounce my name. The classes aren’t terribly challenging technically, but they make you think about dance in a different way, which is a refreshing change from my classes at Goucher.

Thursday night, we had our first Cabaret. Mostly everyone prepared something. The actors did monologues and the dancers broke off into groups to perform trios, duets and solos. Courtney and I combined our solos from our choreography class at Goucher with a duet we had done in a girl’s senior thesis last spring. It was great to dance in front of people again and we got a lot of positive feedback.

As far as traveling outside of Arezzo goes, I’ve booked two official trips. Venice for carnival February 13-14— a trip which may or may not include us sleeping in a train station one night due to lack of available hostels. Hopefully something works out. If not, it’ll be an adventure. Spring break will be spent in Greece for a week in March with four other girls. I’ll probably end up coming back to Arezzo with a nice sunburn.

Also, I'm going to buy Juno in Italian. Honest to blog.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

that's not my name.

I have always understood the uniqueness of my name. I’ve never come across another Lizbie, except that one time in Wellfleet when I was four and my whole family was waiting outside a restaurant, but that’s an entirely different story. Since it’s a little outside-the-box, I usually have to spell it out. In my 21 years, I’ve seen “Lizby,” “Lisbee,” and “Liz B.” among many others. I have never, however, had any trouble with the pronunciation. Until now.

We travel into town by bus every Monday and Friday afternoon to take ballet class from these two previous Italian ballerinas, so you can assume their first language is Italian. After our two hour class, which is now making walking painful, our teacher asked us what our names were. When it was my turn, I said, “Lizbie,” but she didn’t quite get it. I repeated myself. Still nothing. She had me spell it. “Oh! Lezbie!” A few of the other girls from the Accademia tried helping me out, but nothing worked. Another Italian working at the studio who saw we were having trouble even told her she was saying it wrong. It’s really not a big deal, I just think it’s funny that most Italians can’t pronounce my name even if they tried.

I guess I’ll just have to pick a different name to introduce myself as whenever we leave the villa. Any suggestions?

Sunday, January 24, 2010

in the beginning.

Orientation stuff is over and classes begin tomorrow. After a very busy three days, we all decided to sleep in and relax, and upload our pictures of Arezzo as well as our eventful nights. It’s refreshing to not have anywhere to be at any specific time.

Arezzo is a relatively small city (town, maybe?) but large enough to not get bored. Unlike Rome or Florence, we along with some students from Oklahoma, are the only Americans in town. This makes the language barrier a bit more difficult, but once we start taking Italian, we’ll be fine. Right now I can say “Ciao,” “Grazie,” and “Per favore.” The locals are forgiving and many of them know a little english, so it’s not that bad. The funny thing is that they can’t differentiate between American or English accents, so many times we are mistaken for Brits. At least we won’t be “the stupid Americans.”

The food. Ohhhh, the food. Ricardo, the chef here makes us the most delicious meals, which most of the time incorporate pasta. This isn’t surprising at all, considering where we are. Along with cooking, Ricardo is a huge fan of throwing parties in the mensa complete with karaoke, beer pong, and flip cup. I’m just going to stop there, so my parents are ensured I'm going to be receiving an actual education. Hi, Kit and Don :)

Since classes haven’t started yet, I don’t have too much to comment on but I’d rather write a lot of shorter posts instead of a few novels. I figure it’s easier to read that way. I’m definitely enjoying myself, although I do get homesick sometimes. It’s strange knowing that I’m not on vacation, even though it feels that way right now. There is a never a time I wish I weren’t here, and whenever we all talk about the classes we’ll be taking and the teachers we’ll be learning from, I just get more and more excited.

Ciaoooo for now.

Friday, January 22, 2010

picture book.

the view from my room!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

across the sea.

I’m here. I made it. No more riding airplanes or buses, waiting at gates, and eating crappy food. After approximately ten hours of travel, I’m in my bed safe in Arezzo.

My flights were ordinary. Take off, landing, some cracker/pretzel stuff in a bag that kind of tasted like chex-mix but nowhere near as good, thirty minutes of a movie I’ve never heard of (September Issue) and three hours of much needed sleep pretty much sums it up. Customs was fine only after I realized that the Swiss man was asking me how long I was planning on staying Europe, not the Zurich airport (really, Lizbie?).

After claiming both of my bags, each weighing just under fifty pounds, I along with three other girls I met on my flight going to the same program, made our way to the meeting place where we would wait a couple hours before getting picked up by a charter bus to go to the villa. Greeted by a crowd of ten or so other students from various colleges, I was pleasantly surprised. As I expected, we all introduced ourselves knowing that there was no way we would all remember everyone else’s names… not yet. The whole situation was very freshmen orientation/first day of camp, which was comforting.

To be honest, I slept most of the hour ride to Arezzo instead of admiring the view. For the few minutes I was awake, it was gorgeous. It’s Italy. Go watch Under the Tuscan Sun if you want a visual.

The rest of the day was spent unpacking, showering, and napping. The whole villa is chilly since it’s such an old building, but my room is nice. I like everyone I’ve met so far. There are only eighteen undergrads this semester— nine dance and nine theatre. I’m already comparing it to CIT summer minus the life guarding and mountain climbing part (although there will most likely be metaphorical mountains, if you know what I mean). Bonding is inevitable.

Tomorrow and Friday we have orientation meetings planned. A few tours, common sense lessons about how not to get yourself killed or end up in jail, and a walk into town to explore and buy whatever we need.

As Penny Lane would say, it’s all happening.

Monday, January 11, 2010

she's leaving home.

i haven't left yet— not until the 19th. i have, however, spent days, weeks, even months contemplating what next semester will be like, since as of now, i can only go off of what people tell me. for some background for those of you who do not know, i will be attending what basically equates to an arts conservatory in the states. although i will obviously be involved with the dance program, there are also theatre and music programs. every student will reside in a villa at the school, accademia dell'arte, as they live, breathe, and encompass their specialty. if you want to check out the website go here.

hopefully this will be the first of many posts as i embark on an experience that i am told is life changing. ideally, i would like to post weekly, but we will have to wait and see how that goes. right now all i know is that i am beyond excited and cannot wait for the adventures ahead of me.

also, i really hope i come up with a better title before i get there.