Monday, September 5, 2011




flight from Paris to Milano
This should let you know that I am FINALLY in Milano. In Italia. In Europe. Where do I begin??? The visit with Luca's host family was great before my flight to Paris. I had a lot of fun meeting Luca and reviewing Italian, haha. Then came the DC airport. Saying goodbye was not as difficult as I thought, and indeed no tears were shed by me, my mom, or Wheeler and McKay. The flight to Paris was fine--I slept for the first part of the flight, but then a crazy baby started losing it during the second half, and so I watched Pirates of the Caribbean 4 on my little in-flight TV. Before the flight left for Paris, I actually heard a family next to me in the terminal speaking Italian, so I eventually got up the courage to speak to them! They didn't speak much English, so I really had to exercise my Italian skills. We got along very well and we visited each other a few times on the plane. They live in Venezia (Venice) and want to visit me again. :)

Anyways. Yesterday was the longest day of my life. Paris was an absolute nightmare. I hated every moment I was there. My 1.75 hour layover was not even one third the amount of time that it would take to get to my next terminal. I only made my next flight to Milano because of my newfound Italian friends. They helped me get through the ridiculous lines and crowds in order to barely catch my flight before it left. I have never experienced such hell on earth. But enough sadness, on to the beauty of Italia!!

fancy Italian phone :P
I arrived at about 9:30 in the morning and I was met by Milly and my Rotary counselor. We came home and left my bags before heading to the store (by bike) to get me a new SIM card for my phone. It rained the entire way back home. The short story is that my old American phone won't work here, so I had to get a new Italian one which was very cheap and extremely simple. I took a nap after unpacking yesterday, and I woke up in time for dinner (la pasta con pesto) and then slept until 7:00 this morning.

Today was a day of bureaucracy. Milly and I rode bikes all over Milano to various government offices to complete paperwork for me. We went to so many places and I felt like I had seen the entire city, when in reality I probably saw only like 1/50th of it. haha. But now I am home. I met Andrea (oldest brother) this morning, and I just met Marco (middle brother) about an hour ago.

my room
The food here is excellent, if very simple. Milly told me that I must speak Italian all the time, except maybe an hour a day for English with Marco o Andrea--Marco is fluent in English but Andrea is still learning, and he needs to know it for college. Our flat is lovely; it has 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, and my room is small but has a high ceiling and big windows. The fashion here is much different than I imagined, and I think I'll have to get many new clothes, especially jeans, which I just learned do not truly fit anymore.

That's all I can think of now, and I apologize for my choppy English throughout the post--speaking Italian for even only 2 days has made English more difficult. Tonight I will see my friend Francesca, who lived in Starkville for a year through Rotary. On Wednesday night there will be a welcome party for me and a boy from Sweden. On Thursday many exchange kids in the area will see the sights in Milano and then see Harry Potter (in English). This week is going to be tiring, and school doesn't even start until next Monday!! I will try to blog regularly. Ciaoooo!

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