By Alison Mariel, Greenheart Travel Language Exchange Homestay in Italy
So much has happened since my last post! But I will try to highlight the most memorable events.
On January 31st, we celebrated “La Giobia”, meaning there is a huge gathering of family and friends, delicious dinner and wine, a huge bonfire and a lot of fun. The idea is that you write down all your troubles/worries of 2012 on a piece of paper, throw it into the fire and watch it all “burn away” and be gonnnnne for the new year. Kind of a cool tradition, and Paola swears it really works.
The other day some friends and I went to Pavia, a small town near Milan. They were going to check out the university there and took me along. It was an absolutely beautiful place.
We visited the castello , as well as some churches (always gorgeous), a bridge “point coperto”, the university, a bookstore with the wall of an old church inside of it.
We had lunch at a small cafe that had Beatles’ posters all over the walls, and also had delicious coffee at a cafe. The man there gave us complimentary “baci di dama“…these delicious cookies that are basically sugar-cookie sandwiches with chocolate in the middle. yum.
We probably walked down just about every street in the town.
Classes have been going well, however I had to move down a level because the class I was placed in was muuuuch too advanced for my conversational skills. So, I try the new class tomorrow and will hope for a better fit! But it’s also quite convenient because my old class started at 8am whereas this one starts at 12, woop woop for sleeping in.
I went to a 50th birthday party with my host dad last weekend which was a hoot. I was probably the youngest person there but who cares! There were about 5 different live bands, lots of good food/wine and friendly people… tutto buono e tutto bene.
This week there is Carnival, officially next weekend in Lombardia but this weekend in Venice and elsewhere. People have been walking around in costumes on the street in the middle of the day like it’s normal. At first I had no clue why….where are they going? But then it all made sense when my host parents explained the situation. Haha
As for upcoming adventures…. next is a trip to Chamonix in a few days!