Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Day 8: Vacations over....for now

Hello world! Today was the first day of classes for us Lorenzo students. And that means no more parading around Firenze, and no bed time. Though it's a bit of a bummer, I'm excited to begin my classes (today with Wine tasting and Italian), and also to establish a routine and kick the jetlag for good. I made sure to wake up earlier than usual today to give myself plenty of time to navigate. I've pretty much been travelling in groups so far, so having to locate my class was definitely a daunting task. In The other tricky part is the fact that there really is no "campus". The classes are scattered among the city in various unassuming buildings. I ended up getting a touch turned around to my 9 o'clock class, but I still ended up there early. #nerdproblems. Just take a quick left at the Louis Vuitton and you're there. Hit Gucci and Bvulgari and you've gone too far. Tough life I lead over here :).
This class, intensive elementary Italian, had only about ten students, only two of which are boys. Our professor started the class with a bang, refusing to speak anything but italian. Actually, she admitted she doesn't know that much english at all. None the less, I think I learned more italian in that one class than I had in my whole week here. Hay una Domanda. I have a question. Uno, due, tre, quattro, cinque, sei....you get the picture.
After class I took the long way home, and again, felt a huge sense of "independence" that I've been blabbering about lately. 
Fact: This building will never cease to amaze me. 
a little nautical inspiration here in italia

 After a solo trip taking in the sights I met up with Michelle to get our daily Caffe Latte...My new obsession. So so delicious...I dare say maybe maybe better than Dunkins........

.....Then again probably not.

After the quick trip to the market for our coffees, I was off to find my wine tasting class. The professor couldn't be any older than 35, complete with a triangle goatee, earrings and sweatpants (which were tucked into his socks and sneakers). He's so obviously interested and informed about italy's wines and the history that is so deeply embedded into their creation. But he seemed to say whatever crossed his mind which made it hard for me to follow. Let me paint the picture: He poured us a red moscato to try. While explaining that moscato is sweet because the fermentation process is stopped early, preserving some of the sugars from the grapes before they turn to alcohol, he went on a tangent about how some of the best wines in the world "smells-eh like-eh cat p-ees and tast-eh like chicken sh-eet". Hilarious yes, my learning style, no.
We tried a white wine called "Gavi di Gavi" and three reds called "Barbera D'Alba 'Ruvei", "Dolcetto D'alba" and "Brachetto D'Acqui", respectively. My rebel without a cause teacher gave a bit of history about each one, intertwined with anecdotes of his own, including how he doesn't know everything about wine, he's taking courses to increase his own knowledge, but he doesn't drink all the wine because he might fall off his motorbike.

Later Colleen and Kelli found a fabulous cafe that served five euro salads and sandwiches called "Antica Sosta Degli Aldobranidi" while I ran around trying to complete my permit to stay. As if the visa process wasn't enough, we had to gather a whole additional slue of documents and dish out another 150 euro to obtain. Rude. I also had the experience of going to the print center, which made me realize how much I missed having my own personal printer.  Regardless, my salad was to die for, and definitely a spot I'm sure we will frequent regularly.

In this powerhouse salad: eggplant, zucchini, mozzarella, tomatoes,peppers, lettuce and pesto. 
 We then walked around the outdoor markets, looking for jackets and bags. I am dying to get a jacket. One of the vendors even lit one on fire to show that it was real leather.
 We also purchased our masks for Carnivale in Venice this weekend. I have pictures of me in that too, but I think I'll make it a surprise :) When we arrived home I took a nice long nap and chilled for the rest of the night. Big plans for the rest of this week. I also think I'm starting to get sick, so definitely going to try to take it easy until then.

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