Before coming to Italy I never imagined I could have gotten as much as I have from this experience. Not only have I grown as a student but found out so much about myself. Not to toot my own horn but, I am very impressed. Not only do I truly enjoy and appreciate art and history but I am much more independent and stronger than I ever realized. I never would have believed that in three weeks I would develop a true passion for all types of art, attend and enjoy an Opera and feel an earthquake.
I would recommend this trip to anyone especially if it is your first trip to Europe. There really is no better way! We definitely had the best experience by having basically a personal tour guide for Milan and Florence and then the freedom to explore and do things on our own on the weekends. I learned so much about different forms of art and the quality of art. There is no comparison to what I have learned in these three weeks to what I could learn in a year in the classroom back home. I can say with confidence that I can go to an art gallery and say something about a piece of artwork and tell if it is quality. And of course the food—It has been beyond amazing!
I pity my family and friends as I will be talking about everything I have seen, done and eaten for a very long time! However, if I am to be completely honest I must say that I haven’t gotten a little homesick. The bright side was I could always count on the class instruction to pick me up and give me something to look forward to. Who would have thought going to class would be the easiest and comforting part about this adventure. We were so lucky to have these educated Milan women teach our class and show us the best of the best of places to go. They both have an incredible amount of knowledge and patience that has made this trip unforgettable. I really will miss them the next 12 days as my friends and I travel alone to Cinque Terre and Rome.
Another treasure I will return with is lifelong friendships. I have made so many wonderful memories with my group that will never be forgotten. Although we are all very different our personalities really complemented each other. Each of them are fun, kind, intelligent and I knew they always had my back! I hope Dr. Snow, Juliana, and Monica can say that we set the bar high this year.
I must close by thanking Juliana and Monica for opening my eyes and heart to their beautiful city. No one could have done a better job of educating this little Southern Girl to art, architecture and the Italian spirit. Thank you Dr. Snow for leading the group and especially taking me to my first Opera. It was amazing! There is no doubt that Italy will always have a special place in my heart. Molte grazie!