Sunday, February 3, 2013


So I've recently found work at another school, so the month of February will see me shuttling between two sites. I'm actually really happy about this, because this gives me the means to rent a room somewhere, keep on top of student loan payments, and not starve. Maybe even take a day trip somewhere in the region. I'm contemplating the opportunities here. The freedom I crave could be a good thing, but I've got to be careful. I've realized that I am a bit of a recluse, and that I need a lot of time to think and process. I blame it a bit on the whole musician thing, but it is what it is. Writing takes time.

Anyway, this school is located in Corsico, not far from Milan but a hassle to get to using the metro from where I currently live. Still, it's not so terribly bad, and work is work. Like Allende, this new school is also a complex containing different types of high schools. In Italy there are classical and scientific high schools, then high schools that focus on languages, sports, technology, music, and whatever else I've forgotten. I'm sure there is something I missed. I like this whole set up because I get to work with different types of students. Really, I like this new school a lot. I was worried because I'm replacing another SITE intern who went home for Christmas and decided not to come back (I wish...), but the students seem to be taking the change in stride, and half of the classes I am working with never worked with the other intern.

My first lessons have been quite fun, and I feel like I'm getting into quite the rhythm as an educator. Those classes in which you feel like you and the students are on the same page are some of the highlights of my days. There's something special about a positive classroom dynamic, and it's these classes that keep me refreshed enough to tackle the classes in which the students are not quite as enthusiastic.

So the month of February is coming in with a few changes. Some change is always difficult, but I'm hoping for the best.

When in Rome

So, much to my extreme joy, I had the choices of going to the mountains with my new host family (I'll explain some more on that change later) or going to Rome with my friend and his family for the Christmas holidays. *Note friend has girlfriend, so no mushy ideas there. (I know... It makes me sad too.)

At any rate, my dislike of being cold, my inability to ski, and the draw of seeing a friend I hadn't seen in a while made Rome seem like the better of the two choices. I think going home would have been even more fun, but hey. I mean, it's Rome

So, my friend's family has a house (more like independently owned apartments from the U.S. perspective) that's about a five minute walk from the Colosseum. I was one happy camper. The four days were spent walking around, eating a ton, and having great conversations.
On the 24th, some Italian families have what is called "cenone", which is a large sea food based dinner. Then on Christmas day the celebratory meal was lunch. We had neutered baked rooster (capone), boiled hen, a few side dishes of seafood, buffalo mozzarella, and likely other things I've forgotten. Fortunately I was in tourist mode and walked everywhere, so I managed to escape the Christmas season unscathed. Because pictures will likely be more interesting, here you go!

The first night we went out walking. Meet Daniele, and check out the tree. It was pretty cool.

Fountain of Trevi. Threw in a coin, so to Rome I shall return.

Questionably awesome elevators. Really narrow because they were added on to buildings which were a little older than elevators. Just a little. Every housing elevator is like a new discovery in innovation.


Really super awesome breakfast pastries.

Didn't get to see the pope, but just looking around was lovely.


So here we see the dad, the aunt, the brother, me, and cut off a bit is the mom sitting across from me.

Here you can see the mom better.

Piazza di Spagna

Free concert the day after Christmas. St. Stephen's day, if I remember correctly. This church was lovely in and of itself, though, and just seeing that alone was worth the trip up those steps.

The mouth of truth. 

And here's another one.

Me and Luna, Daniele's cousin. Lovely view.

Through this hole you have a framed view of St. Peter's square. Here are two shots. Camera doesn't capture the view, but I still liked the shots.

Really cool. Pyramid in Rome.

Had to touch the Colosseum on the last night, and I definitely admire the graffiti work here.