Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Week 1 in Firenze

Buon giorno! I’m writing to you from Firenze and even though I’ve been here less than a full week, it’s already been an incredible experience. My name is Sarah Roggemann and I’m a junior at Stony Brook University. I plan on graduating with a major in Environmental Studies as well as an MBA through SBU’s fast track program. Originally I planned on going abroad in the spring, but after meeting with the study abroad advisors I took their advice (“Why wait?!”) and hopped on a plane to Florence, Italy in what felt like no time at all.

Since the moment we all landed in Florence we’ve literally hit the ground running. Everywhere I’ve gone and explored so far has been on foot- it’s hands down the best way to get to know your way around. Everywhere you look there’s something amazing to find: the incredible architecture, the people, the food. Just bring a pair of very comfortable sneakers… The city’s center is more or less even ground, but once you start exploring the surrounding areas and gardens it turns into a workout very quickly. The first few days after arriving I made my way to Il Duomo and the baptistery, the Boboli Gardens, the Piazza della Repubblica, Ponte Vecchio, and some amazing local restuarants for aperitivos. And of course had my first taste of the gelato...

Before leaving for the semester I had hoped to see and explore as many of the sights as I could, become comfortable speaking to locals in Italian, and eat as much delicious food as possible. Even in this short period of time progress has been made! There is always something new to see and somewhere new to walk around and each place is more beautiful than the last. Living among locals has also forced me to at least learn some communicating basics already: how to say hello, goodbye, thank you, excuse me, and a slew of others relating to food and eating—the most important, I think. Classes have only just started and once I've got a routine down there will be more posts and pictures soon!

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