Thanks, San Giovanni Valdarno!

I cannot believe that it’s been a full 4 weeks since I’ve arrived in Italy already. It seems like maybe 2 or 3 weeks ago I arrived not having a clue about anything going on here, and already I’m on to somewhere new. Craziness!

The past few days have been pretty good though. Manfred moved in on Wed. and honestly we didn’t have much time in the same space together which worked out okay. I think he mentioned once he was 72 and was one of the most active people I’ve ever met for his age. He plays tennis, he goes out jogging, etc. The time we did spend in the apartment together was fine. He was very sweet and drove me to the train station with all my luggage and made sure I got on the train okay.

Francesca was really nice to have this week as a teacher – she’s very sweet! Here’s a picture of she and I before we said goodbye.I walked around town for the last time taking in the calmness of this town. It is a 180 degree change from where I’d been living in Seattle. I so needed this break! I hear Catania is quite a bit larger. I hope I still get what I want from being there.

In all though, I have no regrets (so far) for having taken a chance on pursuing this dream. There are days I feel a bit frustrated being pushed out of my comfort zone so much, especially that I am not ‘getting it’ when it comes to the Italian language the way I hoped.***  Then I remember that I asked for this, and it helps me not be so flustered. I will try my best to remember when I get back “home” (wherever that may be) to enjoy the little things as they happen, be in the moment as much as possible, and live life to the fullest as much as you can. The amount of gratitude I have for opportunities we have (big and small) is abundant at this time, and that’s only been enhanced by those who I’ve met so far along the way. It’s all about choices in life, and this is one choice that’ll affect me forever.

***Learning a language as an adult is completely different experience than as a teen. My memory isn’t tested nearly as much as it used to, and I really feel the difference! No wonder I’m exhausted daily! As silly as it may seem, trying to figure out what’s being said around you is really tricky and tiring. I so wish I could go back to the days of being in Mrs. Merola’s class. She was very effective and it worked for me. I should get back in touch with her. 🙂

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