Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Lots of flights on this trip. There's a joke on 30 Rock about check-in at Italian airports. I can't remember the details, but it's something to the effect that it's a disorganized and confusing process. And how! It's a little daunting to think of going through that process four more times in the next week. Maybe once I've finally caught up on sleep it will be less stressful and more amusing.

Hello, Rome!

Today was a good day. I was trapped in the haze of jet lag for most of it, but the kind people of arcadia let me sneak in a little nap before dinner. Dinner was actually aperativo with 3 students and the Arcadia director, Tina. That's where you go early (7 pm is early for dinner here), buy a drink, and get a big selection of appetizers. The food here does not disappoint. Lunch was pasta with tomato, pancetta and sage. Yum. And the cappuccino! I can't understand why it's so much better than coffee back home, it just is.

I had dinner last night at the Hotel and fell into conversation with a couple of gentleman who were also eating alone. It was kind of awkward because we were all sitting relatively close together but at separate tables. Once we started talking it was more natural. (come to think of it, the seating arrangement reminds me of Thanksgiving this year. What was the quote? Too close to ignore, too far away to engage?). They were both in town for business - Andy from England and Anders from Sweden. I love getting the chance to speak with people from all over the world. I also love the fact that I'm also here on business, technically speaking, but it doesn't feel like work. Yes, i had meetings today, but it's all interesting and the people are wonderful. Plus, part of my job is to learn more about Rome and they help me do that. Tina knows an amazing amount of the history and people.

Tomorrow morning i fly to Sicily. I'm really excited to learn more about that area. From what i understand, it's essentially a different country from Italy. Something tells me they've got food figured out too, so let the culinary adventures continue! By the way, I forgot my camera today but will most definitely be taking pictures tomorrow.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Off to Rome!

Hello, friends. I'm excited to be headed back to Italy and continuing the travel blog. I realize now I should not have named this one "Italy Site Visit 2009." Chalk it up to my pessimism--I really didn't expect to be getting another site visit, what with all the gloom and doom talks about budget cuts.

But here I am! Ticket in hand (in the electronic sense) and almost ready to go. I had a scare last night when I couldn't find my passport. What a rookie move. I can't tell you how many times every week I warn students to make sure they know where their passport is. And then I go and wait until the last minute to find mine.

This is my itinerary:

Nov. 28 - arrive in Rome
Nov. 29 - visit Arcadia Rome Center
Nov. 30 - Fly to Sicily
Dec. 1 - visit Arcadia Center in Siracusa
Dec. 2 - fly to Lecce (through Rome; apparently all flights lead to Rome)
Dec. 3 - visit Arcadia Center in Lecce
Dec. 4 - fly to Rome
Dec. 5 - fly to Athens
Dec. 6 - Visit Arcadia Center in Athens
Dec. 7-9 - vacation in Santorini!!
Dec. 10 - fly home

Since all of the programs I'm visiting are through Arcadia, this itinerary is much simpler than last year's. And I finally got smart and tacked some vacation time onto the end. You can't be in Greece and not visit one of the islands, right??

My layover is in Frankfurt so I should have time to post from there. Otherwise, you'll hear from me in Italy. I can already taste the coffee!