York & Borgorose

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All done, then, for this year. I hope you've enjoyed these posts. It's been both fun and frustrating, but I've learned lessons, and have met many people.

I have come to the conclusion that Rome doesn't interest me all that much. Sure, there are tons of museums, lots of things to see and do, but that can be said of any big city. It was good to see the place, but I'd go somewhere else next time, like the little towns or countryside instead in order to experience Italy better.

Not having studied the culture, much of the meaning and significance is lost to me. If I visit an English city, I can identify architecture, and know much more about things there and have a better sense of how they fit into history. In Rome (and Italy in general) I find it difficult to distinguish medieval from Renaissance, mundane from royal.

By the end of the trip I was rather tired of listening to Italian. Obviously learning some of the language would have helped, but everything came together so fast that there was no chance to do that. Even if I had had a semester, though, one couse would not have helped much. I definitely like it better when I know what's going on with a project.

Changing plans are okay, but not knowing they've changed isn't to my liking. And not knowing the language means not knowing what's going on. But at least the language isn't as different as Arabic, so it's possible to work out street signs and menus, and learn a few words and phrases faster because they're cognate with Spanish or Latin or even English.

All in all, this has been an educational adventure in many ways. Frustrating many times, undoubtedly, but SUCH a pleasant change from cubicledom that I'm somewhat sad to have it end already.

What's next? I have no current plans, but a lot can happen in a year, so we'll see what next summer brings.


Traditional sunset photo - taken from our compound.

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