Ciao everyone! Welcome to week 2 of my adventures in Italy! I would like to begin by apologizing for this delayed post, there were a few technical difficulties when attempting to post my blogs. With that said, this week has been packed with many school assignments and exams for both my Organic Chemistry and Italian courses. So, my week has been filled with completing many assignments and studying. My best piece of advice to prepare for the exams (in this case Organic Chemistry) is to study a little bit of the lesson taught every day and try as many practice test and questions before the exam to make sure you know all the material you are going to be tested on. Although this is difficult to do with all the traveling done, I use every opportunity I have to study; for example, I would study on long bus and train rides to other cites with most of my classmates, and take some time before and after class to review.
Regarding the Italian lifestyle, I noticed some very interesting contrast to that of life in the United States. The first being that recycling is a huge deal here. There are no garbage trucks arriving right in front of our apartment, but large bins located in the nearest piazza (square) designated for specific waste, either glass, plastics, paper, organic materials, or other miscellaneous waste. I’m a fan of this because it motivates everyone to participate in recycling and helping the environment. Another admirable part of the Italian culture is how easygoing they are, my professor pointed out that getting caffè is a calming part of their life. This is a time of relaxation for them when they can escape their stressful day and calmly converse with friends. Another piece of interesting advice was to only order a cappuccino in the morning, as it is a social norm to only order the drink for breakfast. My Italian has progressed enough to where I can order my own caffè (actually a cappuccino), and cornetto (croissant) for breakfast. I also found that Mercado Centrale (Central Market) is best region to go shopping for fresh meats and fruits and many other goods! I found the most amazing cantucci here.
This previous Sunday, my Organic Chemistry class and I traveled to the land of Romeo and Juliet in Verona. Here we got the awesome opportunity to see where Juliet lived and where a large portion of the play happened. Or supposedly happened, we all learned that Romeo and Juliet were fictional according to our tour guide. I was highly impressed by the city as a whole with its beautiful architecture and by the Verona Arena.