Thursday, December 20, 2012

Con te partiro

As I look back on the events that I endured over this past semester in Italy, it feels like it was all a dream. While I was packing, I kept thinking about all the things that I did with the items I had in my suitcase. I tried so hard to jam in as many activities as possible and travel to as many places as I could, that I had to pull apart my thoughts to remember all the good times that I had. When you exert so much energy into adventuring, time flies by and you can only reminisce those fun times by talking and looking at photos and videos with the people that you were with. I consider these people my family now, as I lived with them, traveled with them, and fooled around with them. Being thrown into a new culture is a new experience in of itself. I began to find my true self-identity in this unknown place, that I now can call my second home. Being surrounded by a family-oriented community and art-filled space, I was able to find comfort in this small city. I gained many life-long friendships along the way, saw some of the most breathtaking views in the world, and ate the most delicious meals of my life in Florence. When I look through photos of me, my style changed, my mindset became more mature, and now I rock the full beard. It's strange how four months in a new place can change someone. You even learn about the people who you thought you knew. Going through the countries where my ancestors were from widened my eyes to a new world that still keeps its traditions the same. Eating the gyros with tzatziki sauce in Greece brought me back to my heritage and I will never forget that taste in my mouth. Sometimes modernity is not the key to life and it might even make us lose ourselves as individuals. The cobblestone streets and old family-style restaurants gave character to the Italy, allowing my eyes to wander in awe every second of the day. Obscurity and beauty allow you to remember everything that you witness. Europe is filled with such unique beauty that it is going to be hard for me to forget every sight.

I will miss the atmosphere of Italy, but I will always have that Italian presence in my mind. I know I will be back one day to enjoy some more sugo di cinghiale, Gusta Pizza, and fresh panini with the ones I love and maybe even the ones who I spent every minute with this past semester.

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