Well, not all of the nights have been wild; that is for sure. Although we have all familiarized ourselves with hot spots downtown, classes have started and now we all get to be awake, alert and ready to learn at 8:00 in the morning. That, at least, is the objective. I’m taking two classes: Business Ethics and Strategic Intelligence. Both courses are really interesting and the professors are extremely accomplished. I wish I could have teachers like this for all of my classes at UGA…teachers like this in the English department of course. The course work is pretty hefty though. There is lots and LOTS of reading…which is a little painful when you’d rather be wandering around cobblestone, but at least I can read on my balcony.
Other than classes we have been getting to know Verona a little more. By now we are all familiar with the different grocery stores and the random times of their Riposo (the equivalent of an Italian Siesta). That did take us awhile, because we just couldn’t figure out why all of these stores were closing from 1:00 – 3:30. Turns out Italians like to take it easy and have a break in the middle of their work day. Anyway, different stores have better products, and of course we go to the fruit, bread and meat stores for our fruit, bread and meat.
We’ve also taken the time to get utterly lost in Verona. Sometimes these lost excursions were at night coming back from downtown, but I got lost in the middle of the day trying to find a currency exchange office. I looked for an hour and a half (mostly for the right bus route) and still came home without Euros. However, now we can pretty much find our way around, and we know which bridges are “our” bridges instead of just taking any of them.
Verona is a lovely city, though. We have toured a few churches, seen ancient Roman ruins, visited countless gelato and pizza shops(which, by the way, is pretty much all we eat, haha), and really acquainted ourselves with the ins and outs of our new city.
Part of an old monastery, a medieval part of Verona.
This weekend we (eight of us) are off to Cinque Terre…a beautiful group of five cities on the Italian coast. We are leaving (by train) tomorrow morning at 5:40, and we will arrive around noon. After we check into our hostel we are doing a five and a half hour hike through all of the cities and then spending Saturday on the beach. All of us are so excited and crossing our fingers that it won’t rain.