Hard to believe I’ve been living in Rome for a month! It’s been an incredible experience already, and I cannot wait to see what the remaining of the semester has to offer! Being here has been difficult to adjust to, mostly the language barrier. During my sophomore year of college, I studied Italian for two semesters. However, as junior year went by, I forgot most of what I was taught, but it’s beginning to come back to me slowly but surely. I remember I went grocery shopping, and I was standing on line to pay. This woman came up to me and started yelling Italian to me, I had no idea what she was saying; all I saw were Coca-Cola bottles in her hand, so I thought she was selling them to me, and I kept saying no. When she talked to someone else on a different line, they let her cut them because she had a few things to purchase. I felt so horrible afterwards, but I had no idea what she was saying to me! Safe to say I definitely need to catch up on my Italian the rest of the semester.
Believe it or not, grocery shopping is not the same here than it is back home in New York. Here, they carry brands I’ve never heard of or they just don’t carry the brands sold in the U.S. So, I’ve had to replace a lot of things I would normally buy in New York. Also, the food in restaurants isn’t as diverse as they are in New York. I’ve only seen a few Asian cuisine restaurants and a few burger places, but other than that it’s been really hard to mix it up. I mean don’t get me wrong I love Italian food, but once in a while it’s nice to eat something different. Unfortunately, there’s not a lot of diversity food wise here, but I will say I have fallen in love with their gelato! I eat it almost every day of the week!
Other than that, Rome has more pros than cons! Everywhere you turn there’s a piece of history or something beautiful! This is what I admire most about Rome, actually Italy in general. It’s so authentic; in New York, it’s all skyscrapers, which are great don’t get me wrong, but Italy has stuck to its roots and its rich culture. All the houses and apartments are old fashioned, the people embrace their culture, and the monuments, fountains, and statues all have meaning to them. Even the views are absolutely breathtaking! I admire every little thing in Rome, even if it’s just a flower. I can’t wait to see more of this country!
Amber is a current student at Pace University studying at John Cabot University in Italy during the Fall 2014 term.