APRIL 6, 2010

Back in Padova After Some Exploring

Back in Padova After Some Exploring

From Master’s in Teaching candidate Kate Peterson.

Vespa, oh, Vespa: A gal can dream, right?

Highlights: Touring Rome, Venice and Verona, settling into the apartment and contemplating a mode of transportation

Buongiorno!

I’m back from a short but lovely week of exploring. After four days in Rome, I was feeling a bit over stimulated — the sights, sounds, smells and tastes were too incredible. In Venice, I enjoyed a peaceful boat ride down the Grand Canal and weaved my way back through the sinking city to the train station. In Verona, I was sure to visit the balcony of Romeo and Juliet for good luck. We’ll see if cupid heads my way.

Back in Padova, the apartment is starting to feel cozier. At the market, I bought a brightly colored tablecloth and a couple little houseplants. (I never claimed to have a green thumb but I bet I can keep them alive for three months.) Also, the boiler has been fixed and hot water restored in the shower! Although the heater never kicked to life, the closets came well-stocked with extra sheets to burrow in on breezier nights. There’s a nice long clothesline on the roof to hang laundry up to dry but the principal warned me not to reveal my “unders” to the students as I live right above the school. I had actually been washing my delicate clothing in a special sink in the bathroom until I discovered it was a bidet! I also realized that I eat so enthusiastically here and nearly all of my garments are splattered with olive oil and balsamic stains.

My roommate finally arrived from Wisconsin! Rachel and I are both looking forward to the students’ return from Easter break. Meanwhile, we can spend some time at my favorite pizzeria. The staff is a hilarious bunch from a few different countries. The only disadvantage is the bathroom — a toilet that consists of a hole in the ground with two grimy footpads. Fortunately, the stall is so tiny that when I teeter to one side, I usually ricochet off the tight walls and am able to regain balance.

This week I am on a mission to buy a used bike! With the narrow streets, transportation in Padova is limited. I can’t afford a Smart car and my parents would kill me if I bought a Vespa. Maybe tomorrow I’ll exercise my bartering skills and score an older bicycle with fairly round wheels 🙂


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