Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Home in Rome

After a busy Spring Break, we enjoyed the turning of the weather at our home in Rome! We know that we usually just update after big trips, but this past week and weekend have proved to be very eventful! Here is a run down of our life.

The SLA's who are the 25ish year olds that are our RA's/parental figuresish planned a rocking party for us in the basement of our center! It was 80's theme and we had fun dressing up in bright colors, thick lipstick and obnoxious side ponytails while we danced to the fun familiar 80's songs that everyone loves. There may or may not have been a point where we simultaneously did the worm and everyone cheered/chanted our names. Slash, there may or may not have been a point where we rocked the Camp Dance, its practically in our blood, we can't help it.

Wednesday at midnight there was a huge celebration in Rome being the 150th Year Unification of Italy. It was comparable to the 4th of July but even more people packed into the streets dancing, throwing balloons and belting out songs of Italian Unity. At midnight fireworks went off besides the Colosseum. It was a very memorable occasion!

For St. Patrick's Day we went to an Irish pub that was absolutely packed and enjoyed some live music being brought back to the wonderful Irish memories we have from Spring Break.

Friday we took a day trip to Tivoli. It was a beautiful small town and we plan to go back! We had a long and wonderful Italian meal for cheap! We arrived at this beautiful villa but the sky unleashed a downpour and we decided that on a nice Spring day we would come back, picnic and frolic through the park.

On Saturday Adrienne spent the day exploring the giant and beautiful park of Villa Borghese gaining inspiration for a short story for class! It was a beautiful day and wonderful to be immersed and lost in nature again. Jana spent the day working on a theology paper indoors. Sweet.

Saturday night Jana had a new experience and went to a chocolate bar in Roma. The shot glasses were completely made out of chocolate and the bar tender gave the instructions to put the entire shotglass into her mouth at once. It was a delicious mouthful.

On Sunday, we made it downtown despite the streets being closed off for the Rome Marathon and ran into St. Peter's Square just in time to see the Pope give his blessing. It was funny to be packed in the square with thousands of people when we have experienced the square at night, more or less alone! Later that night a group of JFRC students got the opportunity to see a play, The Betrayal, in a small underground theater.

And believe it or not, we actually do go to school here, and have classes. We are keeping on top of our studies and mostly enjoying the classes that we have here! Adrienne really enjoys her voice lessons that she is taking with a renowned opera singer, and is now working on her second Italian art song.  In her Introduction to Opera class she has been immersed into the art, learned about it's history, and already watched eight recordings of famous operas!   Her favorite class is her on-site Writing Fiction in Rome.  The teacher is down to earth, cynical, but one of the most fascinating and thought provoking people of all time.  The class is a walking tour of neat niches of Rome, and sitting down along the way to write fiction stories. Actually Adrienne and five classmates met up with their cool teacher for a long dinner last night in Trastevere!

Jana is having a blast in her classes because of the amazing professors that are teaching her! Her Theology class is taking a look at the Jewish Christian Encounter and is lead by the sweetest Priest she has ever met. The class is fascinating and only meets once a week! Check.  Jana thoroughly enjoys her history of Rome class because she is taught by an intriguing professor. He is not only down right hilarious but he has written books, speaks five languages fluently, has a British/ Dutch accent, and is a knight of England. No big deal.

Jana and Adrienne take Italian class  and Art in Rome together.  Italian is a must take class when one is in Rome, and although we are focusing on the nit picky grammar we know that it is necessary to learn! Art in Rome has given us the opportunity to learn about the ancient world we are living in. The last 2 weeks we have gone to the Vatican Museum where ancient sculptures and famous paintings by Raphael and Michlangelo reside. This week we went to the Church of Saint Clemente which has 3 levels of building and rubble built on top of one another over the centuries. The first level underground was a Roman house built in the 1st Century and became the foundation for the first Church of S. Clemente in the 4th Century built on top. The now standing church was built in the 12th century on top of the previous buildings. We got to go down to the levels and experience the excavations. Not a bad Wednesday class if you ask us.

Up Next: Switzerland. 40 days left of this Roman experience. Holy Smokes, its gone by fast already.

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