Ciao a tutti!
How are you all? How’s England? How’s London? It’s raining a lot here in Rome at the moment, so, as every Italian keeps reminding me, I should be feeling right at home.
And I am. I feel that I’ve settled in much quicker than I did in France. I don’t know if it’s because I’m more used to the whole, moving-to-a-different-country-where-you-don’t-know-anyone-or-speak-the-language thing or because I was more familiar with Rome to start with, but I feel comfortable here. I suppose living in an apartment with not just another person but also a DISHWASHER and a WASHING MACHINE and an OVEN and MORE THAN TWO HOBS doesn’t hurt either, though.
Guess who came to visit Rome this week!
Let the selfies commence
Hooray, you guessed correctly, Chantal was here! We spent the day together on Sunday and had an awesome time, which could only have been improved by the presence of Ruth. Though the weather this week has been horrible, last weekend it was gorgeously sunny and warm; the Italians call it marzo pazzerello, crazy March, because the weather is all over the place. Given that it was so warm, we didn’t mind queuing to get into St. Peter’s Basilica. It hit 12pm whilst we were queuing, and Papa Francesco came out to greet his fans.
We upped our Jesus selfie game to a Pope selfie. Unfortunately we could only get a picture of the screen, but it’s good enough.
At one point during his speech, he asked, “Do you believe that love can change everything?” and everyone cried, “Sì!”. Pantomime style, he called back, “You don’t believe it very much! I said, DO YOU BELIEVE!?” and everyone shouted, “SÌÌÌÌÌÌÌÌ!”. He worked the crowd like a celebrity or a rockstar. I suppose he is a celebrity of sorts. Which is why he’s joined Elvis on the wall in our flat for jokes.
There are many things about the Vatican that I disagree with, but St. Peter’s Basilica is not one of them (except for the fact that they half destroyed the Colosseum in order to decorate it). It really is breathtakingly beautiful, especially with the light streaming in from the upper windows.
How holy do these people look!?
After stopping for lunch, we headed to Via del Corso in search of dessert in the form of ice cream. We went to the Magnum Pleasure Store, which is as decadent as it sounds. You essentially build your own magnum, first choosing whether you’d prefer a chocolate or vanilla ice cream centre, then whether you’d like it to be coated in dark, milk or white chocolate, and then you can choose three toppings before it is drizzled with yet more chocolate. The whole process happens as you watch, and the results are delightfully Instagrammable.
This week has also seen the beginning of having to start signing up for courses and modules at university (BORING). Choosing modules here is, would you believe it, about 5x harder than it was in France. The path to a functioning timetable is of course littered with hundreds of clashes, lessons are listed but don’t exist, lessons that exist but aren’t listed, lessons that aren’t in the rooms that they’re supposed to be, teachers that don’t turn up, missing information about how many credits courses are worth, and, of course, ‘technical difficulties’ which mean none of us can log into the Roma III system yet. Pretty much the only way to find a course is to randomly arrive in any given room and hope that the class that happens to be taking place is interesting and/or easy enough to continue taking. I could go on a rant about how difficult it is, but after France my attitude towards university bureaucracy has changed – no matter how much I stress about this, it’s still going to be probably the most difficult thing I will ever do, so I might as well just relax and see what happens. Modules aren’t the reason I’m in Italy, after all. This is:
Here’s to getting fat(ter) in the most delicious way imaginable.
This post is taking part in Pierced Wondering‘s Photo Friday link-up!