A Busy Few Weeks

February 26, 2009 at 9:07 am (Uncategorized)

Well, time has been flying past. In a week, I leave for spring break free travel. I’ll be going to Madrid, Barcelona, and Paris before returning to the villa. But it seems as if there are a thousand things to do before we get there! We’ve gotten plane tickets, but there’s many more reservations to make and plans to finalize. I’ll be traveling with Robert Cook, Maggie Davis, and Lindsay Wagner. We’re a small group, but that just gives us more flexibility in our plans.

It’s been packed getting to this point. A week ago, I had just returned from a ski trip in the Apennines. It was a really fun trip; I actually learned how to ski. Sadly, one of the girls broke her leg and had to return home for surgery and physical therapy. We were all very sad to see her leave, but reports say everything is going well.

Since I last wrote, we’ve been to Siena and San Gimignano, both very old and beautiful cities. They are just a few hours from Scandicci, so it wasn’t very long trip. We saw i Pagliacci in Italian, of course. It was a slightly modernized version, though all the songs were original, from what I can tell. (We cheated and watched it with subtitles at the villa before actually going to see it.) I had a taste of Italy where I ate entirely too much food. They served 15 different items and I sampled each. There was a chocolate festival in Scandicci that had free samples.

We’ve been to a Fiorentina soccer game and watched them win in the final seconds. The stands went crazy. And we even had a chance to celebrate Carnevale with masks and traditional desserts. And tacos, which, for some reason, I don’t think are traditional Italian.

Tomorrow we finally get to see the Uffizi. I’m very much looking forward to that. We’ve seen some very incredible works of art. Next Monday, we leave for Lucca/Pisa, and then on to Cinque Terre. I have heard nothing but wonderful things about this trip. I have a day and a half back, and then it’s off to Spain. Time is just flying past.

Love and miss everyone. God Bless!

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Another Day in Italy

February 5, 2009 at 2:01 pm (Real Life) (, , , , , )

Well, Italy is still treating us pretty well. It’s been raining, so the weather isn’t quite as wonderful. But we all went into the city today.

Florence is an incredible place. We met a woman on the bus with her 8 month old child. Well, Corbin met her. She talked about the city and the people. Apparently, we won’t know how cold the Florentine people are until we see how friendly southern Italy is. She’s been traveling since she was five from all around Italy to Mexico and Guatemala. She worked odd jobs to support herself and continue her travel. In fact, she had just returned from Germany where her son’s father lives. It was a very interesting experience.

We found a really incredible church today off the beaten path. Everything is older here than anything in the States, and the art is breathtaking. It was called Ognissanti, and the painting on the wall were beautiful. Then I happened to look at the ceiling and I was amazed. It was really beautiful. Sadly, we couldn’t take flash photography, so the pictures came out a little blurry. But some of the beauty still translates.

We made our way to the market and I bought another Pashmina. I can’t help it! They’re soft, pretty, and moderately cheap. Hopefully I can hold off on buying more stuff for a few days. About the time we were packing up to come back for dinner, it started to pour. We got to make the twenty minute walk back to the villa in a downpour. I was soaked, to put it lightly.

Tomorrow we’re onsite in Florence for some HUmanities classes about the churches. We will also be going to the Academia where the David is housed along with many other statues. I am looking forward to it. Classes are going well, but everyone knows that isn’t why we’re here.

To Justin: Happy Birthday (in a few days…) little Brother!! Hope it’s great!
Mom: I’m going to have to bring home some recipes. Hope you can make time for some cooking this summer!
Dad: You’re going to love it here. Just so you know.
Sam: Still miss you a lot. Study hard and have lots of fun on campus.<3

Calea is in Israel, so keep her and the whole Greece trip in your prayers as they travel.

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