I found out early last week that I got that marketing internship back in Appleton for the summer that I was hoping to get. It's only part-time, meaning I am still going to be at Ace (Hardware) for a good chuck of time. But still, it's very exciting to finally get some real world marketing internship before I graduate and have to, you know, get a REAL job. And I this will tell me if I really do indeed love marketing as much as I say I do. Trying to coordinate two possible summer jobs from Rome is no easy task let me tell you, but it can be done. Also, I'm applying for Supervisor at Phonathon for the fall, I really hope I get it. I feel like Phonathon is where I need to be right now, especially because I would not have been able to go to London had it not been for the Forza Alumni Scholarship. I want to help phonathon continue to grow and I want to show the world just now darn responsible I am and how well I can rise to take down any challenge.
Tuesday night, the JFRC had its semesterly and ever popular Talent Show. Originally I did not plan on attending, but soon I realized it would be the talk of campus for a while, and that there were some good acts so I decided to go. Aside from Improv (we were not able to assemble the Rome Improv Team in time) my talents are not numerous, or at least ones that could be performed in said 'talent show' on such sort notice. Anywho...it ended up be a great, and hilarious time. A number of people sang things, there was a stand up routine and a break dance. Now it wasn't exactly the talk of campus as I expected but it was still a great time, and good way to take your mind off homework for a little while.
Wednesday brought the last regular season game of Calcio. Team Green, looking to rebound from a heartbreaking loss to Lime and head into the playoffs on a high note was taking on Purple. To start off we only had one sub because of some sick members (and one or two girls who have just stopped playing for whatever reason)...and then midway through we had no subs because of a skinned knee to one girl. However, Conor really stepped his game up...leading the scoring with 5 or 6 goals. Purple would not go away, as striker Andy (who played for Loyola's team) netted 5 scores against myself. Did I have the best game, by all means no, I didn't save a whole lot. Luckily the team had my back, and we won 8-6. Heading into the playoffs with the #2 seed, the target on our backs is pretty big. Hoping to have a good playoff run, mainly for all the bragging rights...but I also think the champions get a t-shirt, and who doesn't love free t-shirts?
Thursday brought about the end to yet another 'fun' week of classes. You wouldn't think 4 day weeks would be that hard, but with 3 one day a week classes, the work can really pile up. So when thursday comes around, you are glad you have a three day weekend. It was kind of a low key night, late in the evening Annie and I decided to go get crepes down in Piazza Balduina not too far from campus. However, evidently the crepe place closes at 9pm on weekdays, so that nixed that plan...instead we got pizza on the walk back. That was the end of the night, or so I thought. Nope, we got back and were about to start a movie when Ashley, Erica & Matt came in and said they were heading down to the local watering hole just for a little while. I thought, why not, better than sitting around. We ended up staying at the bar for a while...no topic was off the table, and it turned out to be a very fun night. Which then led me to sleep in quite late on friday morning.
Didn't feel like doing a whole lot on friday, kind of wanted to take the day for myself as I needed to still pick up a final souvenir or two for various people. Naturally, I headed down to the near the Vatican as the best "Rome Souvenirs" are there. Sure its a bit touristy, but every now and then you gotta do that while living in a big tourist spot. It's been getting steadily more busy around here with the arrival of Holy Week (starting today) and lasting until, well, mid-summer. It's going to be crazy here until we leave, especially with the beatification of JP II on May 1st. As much as I'd love to see that, I can't imagine what the Vatican will be like on that day, half of Poland is due to arrive for that. Might just stay up here on the hill or head to the sunday flea market. I still plan on seein' old Pope Benny and 40,000 of my closest friends next sunday for Easter mass. Once in a lifetime stuff right there.
Saturday (yesterday) I signed up to do a little good for the environment. So myself, and a number of other J-Forcers headed to the Monte Mario Nature Reserve with Cindy (from the JFRC) and an Italian guide. We were taken on a guided hike through the park, whilst cleaning up garbage on the way. It is a very beautiful park on the hill and because of this, it lends great views of both "old" and "modern" Rome. The walk was very enjoyable and it was great to hang out with friends who share similar interests about the environment and stuff. The most laughable thing of the day was finding hundreds of "preservativi" wrappers in one section of the park, well, at least the italians are being safe about it. A lunch at 'Il Chiodo Fisso" followed the hike. Perhaps it was the fact I was so hungry/tired from the walk, but that pizza was incredible, they are known for good pizza anyway but it was especially good that day. Suppli and fries for antipasti was also a nice touch. Oh did I mention the tiramisu for dessert? Heavenly. Upon walking back to campus we noticed the tree bed at the end of the driveway was very trashy and weedy, and since that was where we wanted to plant flowers we decided to do a little more for mother earth and clean that up. There was 15 of us so it went really quickly, and we frankly had fun doing it. Plus, the broom I was using looked like a quitich broom from Harry Potter, so of course I pretended I was flying.
A pretty low key afternoon followed, and a nap. But a trip down to Via del Corso for gelato at Giolitti was in order that night. I have discovered the worlds best combination. Biscotto Oreo, Caramello, & Zabaione (eggnog)...with the panna (cream) on top of course. Each bite (lick?) was out of this world and I was truly sad when I had eaten it all. The highlight was seeing a huge group of tourists come in after us, clearly they did not know how the ordering process works (pay at the register then head over to the counter and get your flavors) as they were all lining up in front of the gelato counter thus causing the line to go out the door. Matt and I considered for a moment helping them out and explaining how to do it...but we looked at each other, then said "nahhh, they have to learn." It's moments like this that again make me feel like a true Italian and not a tourist. I haven't really felt like a tourist in a while, I like to try out my Italian on the locals and it ticks me off when I order or ask something in Italian and they respond in English. I'm trying to show them I'm not a "dumb American" but sometimes there is no pleasing these people.
So now today is Palm Sunday, kicking off Holy Week. I was planning on doing mass down at the Vatican but was so tired this morning I could not get out of bed, I'll catch mass later tonight here on campus. It's pretty great to be spending this week here in the capital of the Roman Catholic faith. Though I am surprised how many stores where open today, first off, it's sunday but also a holy day. But in reality, Romans are not that serious in their faith. Hence, when Holy Week rolls around, pilgrims normally outnumber locals.
I've said this before but I have definitely changed in my seemingly short time here. I can't exactly pinpoint how, but I know I am different. I'll leave it up to you to decide just how I've changed....I just feel I now I have a different perspective of the world and my faith. Living in a totally different part of the world definitely has its adjustments, and I will probably have to readjust when I return home, wherever home now is for me. Time is running short for me here in Rome. If I thought leaving the States to come here was hard, leaving Rome to go back and leaving all the new friends I've made is going to be a hundred times harder. Sure most of them do go to Loyola with me, but a few don't. Who knows when I'll see them again, JFRC reunions perhaps, well thank goodness for Facebook at least.
Calling JFRC alumni for Phonathon really reaffirmed my decision to study abroad here for a semester. I heard so many great stories about how it was the best time of their life. I really couldn't wrap my head around believing them at the time. But now that I've been here for so long, I know exactly what they mean. Some of them are twenty years removed from studying here, but they still think about it daily. I know I will be just like that. American food with taste differently, busses will actually run on time, and I won't get robbed when it comes to exchanging money. But would I change a second of my time here?
You know the answer to that.
|Cleanin' up the park...|