Time really flies. I have gone through almost three of my five months here in Italy and I can tell you that I really try to stay in the moment. I try to live day by day not thinking about life back in Sweden too much. It feels like I’m in a bubble, a parallel life that as soon as I get back, reality will strike me. But I’m very much in contact with friends and family and follow the Swedish news to try to keep up with life back at home. So maybe it’s not much of a parallel life.
So what’s going on in Milano? Well, we still have to wear masks at school… such a different covid lifestyle here compared to Sweden. But hopefully it will end soon. And still I’m glad I can be on campus with masks rather than just sitting at home – it’s all about both pros and cons. I’m taking four courses here at IULM: public speaking, content management & corporate storytelling, corporate communication, and digital & social media creative communication. And yeah, I also took an Italian Intensive course before starting school that is counted in the 30 credits I must take. I really enjoy all my courses and I must tell you that all the professors are really good and makes the lessons interesting. Apart from the courses, I’m also taking Italian as an extracurricular – the best decision ever made. First of all, I have the best Italian teacher you could imagine (she is sitting in front of me while writing this because I’m too early for class). She is funny, makes fun exercises and never gets frustrated when I’m having a hard time finding the right words or pronouncing the same word wrong for the sixth time.
She gives tips about the city and is my go-to-person if I have any questions about Italian culture or the Milanese life. I can always tell her when I have done something in Italian which I’m extra proud of, for example when I ordered my first gelato ALL in Italian. And second of all, knowing the language is key to the study abroad experience. You get the chance to live in another country, another culture, and the best way of integrating is to learn the language. I really enjoy it and want to be as good as I can get.
Apart from school life, I’ve had some Swedish friends over (like our Editor in Chief – Louise) and traveled a lot in the last month. Bologna, Cinque Terre, Turin – just to mention a few. I also went on a solo trip to Ischia, an island outside of Naples. Well that was an experience I must say. Stayed at a resort, relaxed in the sun, eat three course dinner every night (just thought it would be a casual buffé, but I was wrong haha) and became best friend with the head waiter. I don’t think I’ve ever been that quiet for five days. In the end I realized that it’s so much more fun to travel with friends, but still a great experience. Just sitting alone at a restaurant is a challenge itself, and I sure feel like I’ve challenged myself.
Soon it’s exam time, and believe me, the exams are very different compared to what I’m used to. I will tell you more about it next time, when I have gone through it, just to be able to give you the whole picture. I still have a few cities I would like to visit before going back home, which I’m planning to do – just want to find someone who would like to join me (even though not having company won’t stop me after my solo trip). In May I’m also going to run a half marathon here in Milano and going to see a ballet. I didn’t tell you, but a few weeks ago I went to see an opera for the first time, Cinderella – for kids. Yes and of course it was in Italian. And as an answer to your question; no, I understood far from everything, but I really enjoyed the experience. So, life is doing just great here. Take care and, ci vediamo!