In the last ADA life blog of the semester, Madeline Burk, a physical theatre semester student from Muhlenberg College, writes about the things she will miss and what she will take away from her semester here at the Accademia.
Today is my last day here at Accademia. While I’m looking forward to going home, I’m already missing Italy and this place, so I’ve decided to share with you a lot of little things I’m going to miss about being here.
- The little trucks!! Italy has very few huge trucks like America does, I’m assuming because there are far fewer huge highways, so they have these little teeny trucks. They always make me smile.
- The jingle that plays at Conad with the saxophone solo and the little bell-like sound at the end. I have no idea what the jingle says. I love it anyway.
- Nutella B-Readys!! I have never seen them in the US, and they are so!! Good!!
- Traveling so easily!! I have a train station right by my house in the US, but to get pretty much anywhere outside of my corner of the state, there’s a lot of transferring to buses and getting Ubers required. Here, though, it feels like the trains go everywhere. Even in Southern Italy where the rail lines aren’t as comprehensive, it’s still so much simpler than it feels at home. I’ll miss our little semi-spontaneous weekend trips.
- Italian language. I consider myself a linguistics person, but the only other language I’ve ever taken classes in before coming here was Latin, so most of the energy I had for studying and understanding languages went to English and connecting English to Latin. Here, though, I absolutely loved learning a language and being able to go out into town and at least attempt to communicate with the locals. That was never an option with Latin, and I never needed that with English. I may download Duolingo so I don’t lose what I’ve learned.
- The outside escalators to get into town. The first night we walked into Arezzo, our student life coordinator, Julia, told us that we would find escalators, and we didn’t believe her. We took a very roundabout way because we had no idea where we were going, and when we saw the escalators all lit up, it felt like magic.
- Constant card games!! Over the past few weeks, several of us have started playing Malice and Scopa, which is a traditional Italian card game, pretty much whenever we have free time. There are silly little bets placed for various games, like whoever loses has to order the winner ice cream through Deliveroo. Earlier in the semester, we would play poker for dares and for secrets. Our group has a lot of love for competition, I think.
- Music in the living room. Oftentimes between classes and late at night when a bunch of us sat in the living room together, someone would pick up a guitar, start playing, and the rest of us would start singing along. It was always messy and full of laughter and comments and my heart aches realizing that I won’t be experiencing that feeling with this group of people anymore.
- The people. I almost feel like this is a given, but I love the people here so much. I’ve become so accustomed to waking up and having these 14 other people right there in the same house as me all the time, and I’m still in disbelief that most of them will be on opposite ends of the country from me so soon. We’ve had our good times and our tough times, and it’s hard to remember what life was like when they weren’t all always around.
- This one is very silly and very little, but there’s this one bedspread we get for linen exchange that’s all white with little pinkish flowers on it. It’s so lovely.
- Towel dryers in the bathrooms. I know you’re supposed to put the towel on them after you’ve dried off with it, but sometimes, I like to put mine on there before I shower so that it’s extra cozy.
- The taxi service in Arezzo. It’s just so easy to get around!! The call isn’t even stressful, and it takes like 2 minutes!!
I fear I’ll get too sentimental again if I continue, so I’ll go a different route to finish. Here are some of the things I’ll take away from my semester here from both in and outside of class.
- Stop being a people pleaser. It’ll take awhile, but keep working on it.
- Process takes precedence over product, and progress takes precedence over process.
- Dive into things headfirst. Don’t let your brain hold you back.
- Of course, cherish the good times, but don’t get lost in them. If you think too hard about them while you’re in them, you won’t really experience them.
Thank you for this semester. I’ll see you again soon, ADA.