I'm sad to say this is probably my last post from Italy, for I'm not sure how long. I am such a mess of emotions right now - hating to leave this place that has become home to me and unhappy about the goodbyes that will fill these last days, but also anxious to come home home and see those I've been missing all these months. Be prepared for me to be an emotional wreck for a while ... they say it takes however many months you were away to recover, so maybe I'll be normal again by graduation, when the next emotional crisis hits! Ah!
So this is what the last days have looked like: On Saturday the 13th we had our day of exhibition - basically a day to display all of our work for schoolmates, host families, and friends of the school. It was a great afternoon - lots of food, naturally - and it was wonderful to see, hear, and read all the fruits of our labours!
Then on Sunday, the studying continued. Our exam days were Monday and Tuesday - I was so nervous! I had tests in Italian (two parts: written and oral), History of Siena, and LIS (Italian sign language), final papers for creative writing and my deaf culture class, and general to dos to accomplish in addition. Before my history exam (which was an oral examination where my professor could ask me questions about anything we had covered that semester - oh, and this was all in Italian too), I really almost got sick. The funny thing was, this nervousness, and all of the other nervous moments during those days, was not caused by fear of failure, but because I was so worried I would disappoint my professors by not knowing something! It's a funny thing, loving your professors (something I have had a LOT of experience in, both here and in my years at Meredith). The more you admire them, the more you want to work for them, and the more you care about not letting them down. I love all of mine, so you can imagine how much nervousness was floating around in my system!
Then yesterday afternoon I turned in my deaf studies paper and I was finished! Jamila and I got ready at our friend Tate's apartment (she lives in the city) and then the whole school (with the exception of a few teachers who couldn't make it) went out to dinner together at an amazing restaurant ... where, no exaggeration, I ate more than any of the men. Those who had not experienced my eating capacity before were a bit amazed :) I think my stomach realizes that I'm leaving Italy soon, and so it's doing its best to make room for as much wonderful Italian food as it can!
After dinner a few goodbyes commenced, which was awful. I hate goodbyes. Thankfully I will see most people again today and tomorrow before I leave Siena, but I had to say arrivederci to some of my teachers and that was hard. And then later that night I had to say goodbye to Jamila, which was also sad, but a little less, because we are already planning reunions in NC and New Mexico!
Today is my errands/last minute shopping/packing day. Fun, fun. It's also my last full day in Siena and tonight is my last dinner with Fulvia. Gosh, even typing that makes my chest get all tight.
Tomorrow I leave the house with Fulvia around 11 and she's dropping me and all my luggage off at school. I'll have about an hour there before my bus for Arezzo leaves, to say goodbyes and enjoy the company of comrades one last time.
And then I'm en route to Sansepolcro! I'll spend Thursday, Friday, and most of Saturday with Sara, Patrizio and the kids before heading to Pisa Saturday afternoonish. Don't even want to think about those goodbyes.
I'll spend the evening in Pisa, hopefully see the toppling tower (remind me to show you the sign for "Pisa" when I get home - and all the cities for that matter. the one for Pisa is great, love it!). That night I will stay in a hotel all by my lonesome (bah, I'm thinking it's going to be a weepy last night in Italy). I'm going to try to just stay awake, because I have to leave for the airport around 4 am, and it's just not worth it. I'll watch movies, Italian TV for the last time, re-pack my overflowing suitcase ...
And then at 6:30 am my flight leaves for Munich! From there it's Munich to Dulles, and then Dulles to RDU, ahhhh! Can't believe it! I arrive at 6:30 pm (isn't that funny, it's "exactly twelve hours later" - but then no, not at all), where I will fly into the arms of those I love, dropping all my bags for the pickpockets of RDU to pillage as they please. Can't wait.
And so, that is it. And this is it. I'll do a follow up post once I return, but until then, arrivederci.
And thank you for listening, again.
with love and baci,