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From Hello to Ciao


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From landing for the first time in Europe to now forgetting that I’m a tourist, yesterday marked the end of an inspiring first week in Firenze. Thursday afternoon, we hiked up the the dizzying spiral steps to the top of the Duomo, which hosted breathtaking views of the city and the red-tiled buildings nestled into the side of the dark blue-green mountains. That night we made dinner with our cooking groups, cooking Italian style pasta with fresh tomato sauce and homemade pesto made to perfection. It was outstanding! I really need to ask my cooking group instructor, Willie, for the recipe! After dinner, a group of us went to a soccer court to play 7 vs 7. We all had the best time ever getting out and playing and keeping up our skills before preseason starts. Friday in “super arts”, we started painting a still life of fruit and bottles in oil, yet we were only given white and navy blue, so we have to paint in monogram, without brushes, and using only a pallet knife. It was quite a challenge, but I’m enjoying it, although I do think I paint better with colors and brushes. That afternoon in art history, we went to a current museum, which was built back during the Roman Empire as a Pagan place of worship but then later converted into a monastery. We looked at and compared the simplicity of the paintings in the monks’ rooms to the elaborate gold leaf paintings in the church. That night we all saw the Lone Ranger in English with Italian subtitles at the local theater. No one really enjoyed the movie; it was too gory and violent; and for those who don’t mind, it was too unrealistic. What I enjoyed most was the gorgeous theater. It was an actual theater with an orchestra and balcony section, statues watching over the screen, and beautiful frescos on the domed ceiling. The big velvet cushioned chairs were so comfortable, some people even fell asleep! The popcorn was also the best popcorn I have ever eaten! I’m not sure I can ever again be satisfied with my local movie theater at home. Ciao! -Phoebe

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