Saturday, February 28, 2009

Today, I spent the day in Rome. It was more than I could have imagined. We had the best gelato in the country, saw the Pantheon, walked through ruins, saw the Colosseum, saw the triumphal arch of Constantine, the national Roman museum, the arch of Titus, and a really incredible church that I forget the name of (woops). So uh, if you want to see lots of photos please let me know because I have TONS. For now, I'll just leave you with one photo of my friend Ryan because, you know, I don't want to brag too much.


Oooh, and yes, that is the reflection of the Colosseum in his shades :P.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Walking around the city never gets old. There's always something there that you didn't see before. I went out early today, since we don't have classes on Fridays, and I heard people everywhere whistling jovially as they opened their stores, hanged out their laundry, or worked on the pavements. One complete stranger said very warmheartedly, "Buon giorno!" to me as I walked by. I love it.


This is for Lydia. It's a nearby music store, and the section I know she'd be lingering around.


This is for Laura. I found brightly colored flowers in a window, and it made me think of her because of how much she loves window plants.


And I asked these men that were sitting in a park (in Italian!) if I could take their picture. They loved that I asked, and that I was from America.


Thursday, February 26, 2009


Orvieto cathedral, just a short walk away.


A photo from the cliff where we live. The land below is Orvieto, as well.


My director's sons love picking the grass, collecting sticks, and playing in bushes and trees because they lived in Jerusalem for so long where all they new was sand and stone. They are a handful, and a lot of fun!


And Italian car.


View of Orvieto from below. We went on a hike, and the view was astounding. Orvieto is absolutely beautiful.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Yesterday, I was in the middle of a post and I got cut off. I have been borrowing people's power adapters, but finally got my own brand new ones, so hopefully that will prevent me from getting cut off and/or possibly taking up someone else's computer time. I'll make up my missed posts by showing you more pictures later!


This is the band that played for us at our welcome party on Sunday night. They were really good, and it was a lot of fun.


These are nuns that we are living with, enjoying the nice weather, their garden, and (you can't see) a few cats.

Well, that is all I have time for. I want to catch an Ash Wednesday service at the nearby church. Until later!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

I'm sorry to say that I don't have a photo for you today. It's a Sunday, and I've been out pretty much all day without my camera. I'm going to learn to carry that around more. Don't know why I haven't been, really. But the director of the program here had a good point about "two-dimensionalizing" our experiences here. If we're not careful, we could miss out on a lot. It's important to see, hear, smell, understand, and comprehend everything we come across. Our memories of and relationship to the place are far more valuable than what little a photograph can really capture.

So far today, I've been on a tour around Orvieto, been to an Italian mass, had the best chocolate cream-filled pastry ever, decided that the place I got it from would require a regular visit from me, walked through the streets of Orvieto and through the shops, and more that I'm sure I'm forgetting. I really wish I could further describe everything with tedious detail, but the only way to really grasp everything that is going on is by experiencing it first hand -- which I HIGHLY recommend that every person gets to do at some point in life!

I have six minutes left, so I'll cut this a bit shorter than I was hoping. For tonight, some people from the program are preparing a welcome festival for us. We will meet Orvieto families, supporters of the programs, and the nuns :). A high school band is going to play music for us while we partake in more Italian delicacies, wine, and fellowship. When I woke up this morning, I wondered how I ever deserved to be waking up in Italy with such a great program and such great opportunities to grow in my faith, my knowledge of the Italian culture, art, and so much more. I thank God every day.

I hope my posts are sufficient enough to tell you all how things are going. Please contact me for anything... even if you have any questions. I would love to hear from you and respond the best that I can! "Happiness isn't real unless shared."

Saturday, February 21, 2009

First Day

Quick recap of the past day:

I arrived to Italy at 7:20 this morning (1:20 am)
Had my breath taken away on numerous occasions (including seeing Orvieto)
We live in an old monastery
We have gardens, courtyards, and a killer view from Orvieto over another town
It's colder indoors than outdoors, but makes for many cups of tea/coffee and layers
The people are awesome
There are frescos in our hallways
We have mainly two-person dorms with personal bathrooms
I love my schedule
The cultural norm is to have lunch, a daily walk, and "repose" (sweeeet)
We live with nuns
They have a garden we have a beautiful view of, and they make jams, olive oil, etc.
The city has the typical-Italian-looking coble stone alley ways
I already found the chocolate and coffee shops
The plan is to spend next Saturday in Rome, and Friday in Assissi
Only after a day, it is safe to say that this will be the best four months I've ever experienced in my entire life!

Sorry for the briefness of this post. Time is pretty limited. I will try my hardest to have a new photo or two for you every day, and hopefully more meaty updates on what's going on. My internet access is 5:00 - 6:30 PM everyday (11:00 - 12:30 AM your time). I would LOVE to hear from you! Email me or mail me, and check back again for another post soon.

Air mail me:
Sarah Nenno
Monastery San Paolo/via Postierla, 20
Orvieto, Italy 05018