Week 5, 3 weeks to go
I have obviously been very bad about the updates lately, so I am probably going to forget some stuff from the week, but here goes.
We have a new girl staying with us, a girl from Germany who is very nice and speaks great English but not as much Italian. She got here Sunday and will be here for two weeks. (Edited because I am a dumbass and got my countries and languages confused)
On Monday I went to school and took a test that was corrected right away, and I was promoted to level 2. After the test I wanted to go to the Uffizi, one of Florence's most important museums, but it is closed on Mondays so I decided to see the Duomo instead. First on my list was to climb the dome. I think I am developing a creepy old staircase phobia, which is bad because that's pretty much all there is on the way up. I did get to see some awesome stuff because you get to walk around the inside of the dome which has amazing frescoes.
Monday evening Andrea and I joined Mark, Jason and a girl whose name I have forgotten watched XMen at the English language movie theater. Yay for no dubbing. It's in this old theater that looks soooo nice. The funny thing is that they have an intermission, so halfway through the movie the lights went on and we were like, WHAT? My teacher said it was because Italians couldn't go that long without smoking.
Tuesday was a big day--the day of the World Cup Semifinal, Germany vs. Italy. It was madness. This is the enormous crowd watching the screen that looks like a PSP:
We managed to avoid some of the madness by getting these sweet spots overlooking the crowd, a much smaller screen, and a projection onto a tower that was once part of the city fortifications. Check it out.
In case you didn't follow the game, it was 0-0 the whole time. At the end of 90 minutes, if nothing has happened, they play for two more periods of fifteen minutes (somebody correct me if I'm wrong). If nothing happens then, I think there's one other period or something and then they do penalty kicks to decide the winner. About three minutes from the end of the second overtime period, Italy scored. Madness! Jubilation! Screaming! Airhorns! Waving of Italian flags! And somehow, just as we had finished hugging and high-fiving and jumping up and down, Italy scored again! Holy crap! The game ended and the Italians got in their cars and on their scooters and started honking and didn't stop until around 3am. Andrea was not particularly overjoyed about the whole thing so we went to a bar to get some wine to "help us sleep through the noise."
Oh, I almost forgot. Tuesday was also the 4th of July. To celebrate I decided to do the most American thing I could think of: I ate lunch at Mcdonalds. It was terrible, as good mcdonalds should be. The main differences between McDonalds in Europe and in the US is that there's more on the menu in America and in Italy sometimes gypsies will come up to your table and beg. Weird. For dinner I found this bizarre little "mexican" place. These people obviously have no idea what they're talking about.
Wednesday I went to watch the other semifinal with some friends, which was not nearly as exciting as the Italy game since, well, it did not involve Italy. The Italian players are such drama queens that I suspect there may be an audition along with the tryouts. Every time someone is anywhere near them they fall down and OHHHHHHH my LEEEEEGGGGGG! Drama, drama, drama, and then if nothing gets called on them they just get right up- healed, it's a miracle! The France-Portugal game went much faster because those guys were all busy trying to act like they weren't hurt.
I can't remember what happened Thursday so it must not have been very exciting. On Friday after class I went to the Uffizi, Florence's big honkin museum. The cool thing about museums in Florence over most places in the world is that all this amazing art by really famous artists is local. How sweet is it to see something by some famous dude and in the info it says "this was in Santa Maria Novella" and you're like dude, I have totally been there! My favorite thing was the gallery, which isn't really the main deal there anyway, but there are little portraits all along the walls of every pope, king, cardinal, saint, author, artist,and sheik you can think of. Attilla the hun was there. It was freakin sweet.
Today i finally got my Italia shirt to wear to the big game tomorrow and a spiffy shirt for Dave. I saw Santa Croce, which was nice but all the impressive bits were covered up with scaffolding. Note to self: come back to Santa Croce when the restauration is over, because from the picture it is gonna be incredible. Saw the tombs of Dante, Michelangelo and Gallileo. Trivia: the latter two were born three days apart.
Well i hope you are still reading this and i hope you liked the pictures. Sorry for the infrequent and overly bloated updates!