30 April 2012


In Florence, I walked slowly.
In Florence, I bought an Italian purse in olive green.
In Florence, I saw Michelangelos' David.
In Florence, I ate a Cannoli for the first time.
In Florence, I sat on the steps of Santa Croce and sketched. 
In Florence, I finally found the pace of Italy.

29 April 2012

Mushroom hunting.

When your host dad asks you if you want to go mushroom hunting on a crisp, weekend morning, it is best to say yes to this strange invitation. So I put on my tennis shoes and loaded into the van with my host family and the dog and we drove to Lake Belladonne, where we walked around in the forest looking for the strange and delicious fungi. I found four of the ten!

When it started to get muggy and warm, we returned home to whip us a creamy, perfumed sauce to pour on our pasta. It was a delicious lunch.

French lesson: Hunting for mushrooms is completely normal in France. Even the teenagers do it, without complaint. Love it!


Venice was heartbreaking. It showed me green, clear water under sinister gray skies. It got my shoes wet in the first five minutes. It was beautiful, even from beneath a hood. It had cappuccinos that drove me wild, Gondolas rides for 50 cents, and endless spiderwebs of canals.

The Basilica San Marco was the most divine church I have even seen. The gold gilded ceilings and intricate tile floors that made the long Easter mass more bearable. When I went into the church the skies were gray and cold, and when I came out it was warm and blue. A real Easter miracle.
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