It has been quite awhile since I last wrote, but I have so much to share! I have been traveling for the majority of June with friends and family (taking trips to Glenwood Springs, California and Hawaii). Within the last few weeks though, I have been learning a lot more about my trip and working hard to make sure I am well prepared to leave in September.
I got in touch with my host family after technology had failed us all for a month or so. We had each sent emails that didn't go through, but luckily I covered my bases and sent them an old-fashioned letter by mail that they received. Now, we have talked on multiple occasions and I am feeling even more excited and comfortable about my trip-- I am really blessed to say that my host family and I were perfectly matched for each other!
My family will consist of: Alessandro (father), Regina (mother) and Matteo (brother). I am hoping to come back fluent in Italian and Spanish, because Regina is actually from Santiago de Compostela, Spain and both languages are spoken in their home. We will be an active and social family!
Additionally, they informed me that I am enrolled in the Liceo Linguistico (Linguistics High School) of Sanremo. Thus, I will be working on the core subjects along with a few foreign languages; I am very glad because I really love languages and was already working on multiple languages here.
My actual travel plans are set in stone now as well! I will leave Denver on September 4th for New York City (where I will have an overnight "Gateway Orientation") with the other AFSer going to Italy from Colorado, Taylor. From there I will go to Zurich, Switzerland and on to Rome's Fiumicino Airport. I will spend the weekend in Rome with all the other AFS participants I will be sharing the La Dolce Vita experience with before heading off to have a long-awaited meeting with my host family! All flights and hotels booked and ready!
My Italian skills are becoming more proficient as I continue work with Rosetta Stone, listening to Italian artists (including Marco Mengoni, Chiara and Emma Marrone), following Italian calcio (their Confederations Cup run as well as the club summer transfers), watching Italian movies (my top one being La Vita è Bella) and conversing with AFSers and volunteers from Italy.
While I am here in the States, I am enjoying quality time with friends and family and have a busy schedule making the rounds with my loved ones! I still have a mother daughter trip to Cheyenne Frontier Days to see Luke Bryan with my friends Rachael, Lauren and our moms-- which I believe is the ultimate, all-American experience. Following that, I will go to Chicago to get my student visa. One of the most important things I have to do is to fundraise; now that I am home, I am working on organizing many fundraisers that anyone can participate in if they like (I am open to suggestions as well). Donations are also accepted.
I hope this wasn't an overload of information, but I am incredibly excited and wanted to share all my good news with everybody! If you have any questions or comments, I'd love to hear them, and I would also love to see many people before I leave, so don't be strangers!