By Eric So, Florence '14
Another amazing day in Italy! More views, sites, and incredible food. Not only am I surrounded by great things but great people. The experience is always important but sharing it is what can make something quite special. It can be a little hard sometimes being away from my family. Yet it feels so rewarding to know that my parents trust to me take care of myself. So, the day always starts off with the sun glowing through the window and waking up to the sound of my phone alarm. Then comes the the milk tea, which I drink religiously. I don't have it much in the States but I guess some things change and some don't. As the morning progresses I do the daily rituals of taking a shower and brushing my teeth.
We gathered around at 10 o'clock and prepare the 3 hours of Latin required to give us a deeper understanding of the significance of what we see in the latter part of the day and to practice the exciting process of Latin translation.
Once this is done, we get ready for the afternoon and set off. Today, as we stepped outside, a cool breeze welcomes us, bringing high hopes that today will be better than the last. As one will understand, the summer is the hottest of the seasons and there is no exception in Florence. There is a lot of exercise involved as there is no other form of transportation other than the bus, which can be quite spotty at some times. But, we carry on and hope the weather holds as we walk through a labyrinth of streets among the tall buildings. We walk across the Ponte Vecchio, a spectacle of jewelry shops lined up upon a bridge inviting those with the budget to come in and buy what they have to offer. The sight can be surreal sometimes.
Then, the counselors take us to a supreme sandwich stand which served us sandwiches that were (almost) out of this world compared to the ones we had the day before. We quietly eat our sandwiches as we take in the scenery. As the last ones begin to eat we start off to the Uffizi Gallery, an amazing place that really allowed you to become immersed in the outstanding art presented to you. Once we arrived, we were allowed to venture into the depths of the enormous place and view historic pieces of art. Tired? Don't worry there is a cafe at the top of the museum where we sat and enjoyed the view, weather, and the snacks we ordered. We finished and parted from our more experienced teachers leaving us under the authority of Alyssa, our counselor. Luckily, she is a very kind person and allowed us some free time as she and another enjoyed the beautiful music played by a visiting orchestra. I went to a leather market with another student and we bought things for ourselves and others we thought would enjoy what Italy had to offer when it came to leather. We come back and start on the long journey back to the house.
With food on our minds, I quickly begin to prepare what would be a feast for all. The plan was to make crêpes with a spinach, tomato, cheese, and meat filling. As we cook we enjoy the euphoria of cooking with such fresh ingredients and use the comfort of each others presence to keep us motivated. It was a lot of work, but the reactions and flavor from the crêpes compensated for everything. Everyone has eaten and the sky has gone dark. Everyone retreats to their rooms and enjoy the last hour or two before the whole process begins again. This is the time those catch up with loved ones or catch up on some sleep. No matter what, the day has been a handful but if everyday were like this, I would be happy to live like this for the rest of my life. I hope that the other students, who come after, experience what I have experienced today for it is something I will truly never forget.