Thursday, February 23, 2012

Lone Thoughts

I have so many things on my plate right now, and unfortunately, I'm not talking about food. I've been super busy over here, but in a good way. My friend Bill has arrived, and I cannot exaggerate enough on how nice it is to have some company from home. What's also nice is that Bill brought me a box of Cheese Nips and Fruit Roll Ups. I couldn't possibly be any happier to finally have some comfort food to snack on. I've taken him all around Rome already and showed him all the must-see sights of the city. On Tuesday we walked around all day and went to the best pizza and gelato shop in Rome. I don't think there's been a single day of his trip here so far where we haven't found ourselves spending a few Euros in a pizzeria and gelateria. But I'm certainly not complaining - spending your money on food in Italy is a very wise thing to do. 
On Tuesday night while Bill was at his hotel, he sent me a message saying that he wasn't feeling too great and that he wasn't up for our plans to go out to the bar. Something he ate 
Shania throwback!
didn't agree with him and he was feeling tired from all the walking and jet lag, so I went to Scholar's with a bunch of au pairs. I totally understand what it feels like to be sick and uncomfortable in a foreign country, so I advised him to get a good rest so we could go back out again on Wednesday. For the first time I discovered that if you tell the bartender you're a student, you can get shots with either peach or strawberry vodka for just 1 Euro. Why didn't I know this before? Thanks to my liquid courage, some of the other au pairs and I sang Shania Twain's That Don't Impress Me Much and teared the place up. We. Were. Awesome. It was the first thing I remembered when I woke up the next morning.
My favourite thing about Scholar's is that you always meet interesting people to talk to that come from all over the world. For example, I met this guy from Philadelphia who looked 
Future boyfriend?
identical to Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory and spent the end of my night conversing with him and talking about philosophy. The whole time I was hoping he would crack open a can of facts about quantum mechanics and string theory or at the very least say 'Bazinga', but he didn't. He gave me his phone number, but I don't know if I should leave the poor boy alone or see him again so that I can take his picture.
I also met two girls from Canada, which I was really excited about. The one came from British Columbia and the other came from P.E.I. I told her that I was hoping to move to the east coast in September and go to school in Halifax, and she told me so many dreamy things about Halifax that make me want to go even more badly than I did when I originally applied. She told me that Halifax is a big city with a small town feel because everyone is so friendly and hospitable. She also said that its great if you love nature and ocean life, which I do. I want to go
Bill's dinner.
so badly, but I still have a couple more months until I know whether or not I get in. So until then, I just have to enjoy the time I have in Rome and hope that all goes as planned.
Yesterday, Bill and I met up in the afternoon and did some more exploring through Rome. We went out for a really nice dinner at this beautiful restaurant with the money that my dad gave us (if you don't know the story, go back and read Roman Company). To start I ordered a piece of toasted bread with this delicious black olive spread on top. It was the best appetizer I've ever had, but then the gnocchi with fresh tomato sauce came, and I'd forgotten all about my olive bread. The whole time we were eating we both kept agreeing that Canada
needs to get its act together and learn the art of food. We were both full from our meals, but soon enough we found room to go to Fridgidarium for dessert. Then we went on a night tour of Rome conducted by yours truly. I showed him the Colosseum, the Trevi Fountain, via del Corso, and every other sight in Rome that is twinkled with gold lights by the time it gets dark. 
It brought me to a great sadness last night to know that this experience in my life is just that - an experience. It isn't permanent, and I never want to stop marveling at Rome's beauty and everything that the centre of the world has to offer. While walking home alone last night through the dark alleys and cobblestone streets, I felt so empty. Not in the sense that I was hungry, although most of my 
deep thoughts involve Italian food. But I began thinking about what was going to happen once I go back to Canada. I don't want to, especially if I don't get accepted into my dream school. What am I going to do all summer? Frolic in fountains at midnight while drinking red wine with people from all over the globe? Spend a few careless hours eating homemade pasta and bread with yummy olive sauce on top of it while sitting across the table from one of my other European friends? Dancing and singing and drinking 1 Euro shots at Scholar's? Waltzing around Campo dei Fiori under the hot Roman sun and walk through the markets and take pictures of all the fresh vegetation and funky vintage clothing? No. I will be in Port Colborne.
After I was done putting myself into a deep depression, I made myself a tea and turned on my laptop. I checked my e-mail and a name came up that I've been hoping to see for a while. It was an e-mail from my cousin in Afghanistan. My cousin is 20 years old and flew to 
Afghanistan last Saturday because he's in the Canadian army. I wrote him a long heartfelt e-mail about how proud I am of him, how I hope he's safe, how to deal with homesickness, and kept him updated about my situation over here in Italy. He e-mailed me back and told me everything is well and that he's already feeling lonely. He's been making some friends which he said is helping his situation, and that he's jealous that I'm living in Rome, enjoying food and warm weather. My bad mood pretty much went away after hearing that he's safe and sound.
But here I am again at the end of a long day of roaming the streets will Bill, and I find myself alone once more, left in silence with all my thoughts. I'm going to draw myself a hot bubble bath and read Eat, Pray, Love for the 17th billion time and hope that all my troubles and sad thoughts soak away and vanish down the drain. How is it possible to feel so alone in the centre of the universe?

1 comment:

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