Thursday, July 22, 2010

Life Lessons

The last few days have been pretty uneventful but productive nonetheless.  I mentioned this a couple of posts ago, but my time in Italy, and this experience in general, has been one giant, invaluable life lesson that I couldn't have gained any other way.  I honestly am coming out of this a completely different person than I was on May 24th when I boarded the plane to come over here, and it's all for the better.  

For the past 3 years (at least) I had been hell-bent on coming to Italy.  It was like some unexplainable power had taken over my brain and was telling me "You need to go to Italy."  I was doing anything and everything I could to get over here, and I didn't have the slightest idea what I was going to do once I landed.  I had purchased travel books and novels set in Italy, done countless hours of research online, and watched the Travel Channel anytime the show was set in Italy.  Needless to say, I was obsessed, and I didn't have anything else to go off of other than that I just knew I needed to come to Italy.

When the opportunity of a lifetime came through my e-mail one day, it's safe to say I was just the slightest bit ecstatic.  I was finally going to achieve one of my lifelong dreams (if you can call it that at 23 years old), and, as an added bonus, I wasn't going to be a sole, lonely American in a sea of Italians.  It really was the perfect opportunity and something I had been dreaming about for years.  Another check off the bucket list!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

It Tastes Like Chicken

Today was a pretty uneventful day, so I'm going to post more "You know you're in Italy when..." pictures and comments.  Christine cooked up one of the rabbits that have been hanging out in the freezer for dinner tonight.  Elia and Ida do a really good job at cleaning the meat before they give us their headless pets, and the meat is very lean to begin with, so aside from cutting the meat off the bone, there's very little preparation involved.  Christine found a recipe online that involved slightly browning the rabbit meat in olive oil, adding crushed garlic, some rosemary (from the garden), and a bottle of white wine.  She let it simmer for a few minutes, and then baked it in the oven for about 3 hours.  And guess what?  Rabbit tastes a lot like pork, with pretty much the same consistencies as well...maybe a little less tough.  Living in Florida, everybody always says gator tastes like chicken, and now I can say that rabbit tastes like pork.  It was pretty good though, I've got to say.

Today Jameson was running around the kitchen rummaging through our makeshift pantry, and he pulled out a bag with yesterdays leftover baguette from dinner.  You know you're in Italy when your kid starts gnawing on a rock hard day old baguette.  And so it begins.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Bread Crumbs, Mi Amigo

Alright, I've got a shiny €2 coin for the first person who can tell me what late 90's teen chick flick the title quote is from.  And NO GOOGLING!  (I'll give you a hint...they're glow in the dark.)  The movie rates right up there with She's All That for all time best teen chick flicks.

Enough with that, on to the blogging!  I went out for a bike ride today, and got so lost I needed bread crumbs to find my way back (hence, the title).  I like to mix it up on my runs/rides, because, well, let's face it, it's a heck of a lot more fun to have a change in scenery, and you never know what you're going to find around the next corner.  I started out on the road right across from our house, which is the same road that took me to the grocery store last ride, so I had get a bit crazy with my turns.  I ended up on a dead end at one point, and then on the autostrada for a period as well.  I can officially check that off my list of things I've done in my life that not many other people have.  The autostrada is like the Italian version of the autobahn, but it has speed limits, so it's really just like a highway or toll road.  Here, though, instead of just ending or merging into another highway, the road is still under construction, and it just tapers down into several roundabouts leading to different cities in the area.  Because of all the turns and winding roads, I'm not exactly sure how far I went, but I tried to map it out as best I could and it came out to about 8 miles.  I just kept using the big mining spot on the side of the mountain behind our house as my landmark, and I eventually ended up in Sacile and was able to find my way home from there.  I had planned on taking more pictures during my ride, but ended up only taking 2.