Tuesday, May 19, 2009

An Interesting Week So Far!

The topic of today's conversation class was the usage of Facebook within the Italian culture. I was not surprised to learn that Facebook and other forms of virtual socialization are unpopular here. It's not a matter of technology, but a reflection of the Italian instinct to fare una chiacchierata!

There's a new student in my class who's a nude model for the University of Florence School of Art. He works 10 hours a day, naked, posing in "David-like positions". Also, I found it interesting that he will be working for an anti-Mafia organization in Naples, called "Liberaterra". This organziation uses land previously confiscated from the Mafia which is used to produce products that are sold to raise money to fight the Cammora. I'm meeting some very unusual people here.

It was a pleasure to ride my city bike to school today. The weather is perfect. The birds are singing outside my window. They sing all day long, not just in the morning. On my way home I bought some sunflowers and lilies from Giovanni. I pass by his outdoor flower shop several times a day. Having fresh flowers in the house is becoming a way of life for me.

I've been spending an inordinate amount of time shopping around for a new telephone. I've been living without a phone for over a week. I've gone to several different shops and have been comparing the different "specials" offered by the different phone companies. It's a whole new learning experience for me, because I have to learn all the technical jargon, and have to understand how their calling plans and billing works. And I have to be sure that I understand the terms of their service contracts.

This Friday the Giro d'Italia arrives in Florence, and on Saturday it departs from Florence.

To top of my day, today I went to the post office to pick up the quilt that Donna and Kent sent me! It's very soothing to have such a masterpiece adorning my bed, and to know that it was made by hand, by a special friend.

Which makes me realize how guilty I feel for leaving my friends in California. I miss them. It is so hard to keep a handle on what's going on there. I feel so far away. I love them and don't want to lose touch, and need to make more time to communicate. But I also know that a friend is a friend for life. I love you guys.