Just six days ago, after three planes, two layovers, and what felt like just one hour of sleep throughout it all, I somehow made it to Rome without any major hiccups. I’m sure some of my friends worried I’d end up in the wrong country somehow, haha! However, my luggage did get lost (silly ole thing!). No worries, though. It found its way back to me after my first two days on campus. I’ve since unpacked, settled in, and even found my way to a nearby supermercato with a few friends for some basics, including a bag of soft croissants and jam for breakfast.
Since my arrival, my schedule has been plump full with orientation sessions covering transportation how-to’s, cultural differences, Italian language basics, expectations and rules, and more. And outside of all of this, I’ve managed to stumble across the Vatican City, The Colosseum, The Roman Forum, the Trevi Fountain, and Villa Farnese in the town of Caprarola in Northern Lazio, Italy as well. Oh, I’ve made a few stops for some delicious gelato along the way. My favorite so far? The “Old Bridge Gelateria” where I devoured a small cone with three scoops of different flavored gelato (all with Nutella in them), and for only 2 euro! It was divine.
I’ve also managed to do a bit of what I originally came here to do: study (worry not, parentals!). Today was day two of classes. I’ve now had three of my four classes for the semester, and I’m excited for different aspects of each.
The city, as those who have visited it know, is beautiful. Books, pictures, and so on simply cannot capture the reality of this life-filled city. I’ve already gotten myself very lost with a few friends while trying to get where we’re going, which is a wonderful way to really explore and get to know a place (for any friends who’ve never tried this out for themselves). And it’s an excellent maneuver, no matter how accidental, for striking up conversations in Italian when you need directions. Or at least, in my case, the kind souls have quickly realized I’m American based on my stellar Italian speaking skills and chat with me for a bit in English if they’re able to. Turns out people can be pretty neat like that. 🙂
Since my arrival I’ve felt many things: overwhelmed, ecstatic, frustrated, confused, giggly, tired, enchanted and lost. Especially lost. It’s the kind of lost that doesn’t go away just by blindly following a mass of people because its inching in any direction and you don’t know where else to go (although there have already been plenty instances of this for me, LOL). It’s the kind of lost where you have no control over anything going on around you, so you never know what to expect. As such, I come to realize that Rome has already reminded me of the importance of accepting this lost feeling. The importance of embracing it even. And of course, laughing at myself along the way.
So for now, I leave this post with the hopes that I’ll continue to embrace the nervous laughter and uncertainty. I’m looking forward to what’s to come! Until next time. Ciao!