Street Fairs, Bureaucracy, whateverPosted: Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Sunday, I biked downtown a bit to get at some food and found this nice surprise.
Mix a farmer’s market and a bunch of people selling new clothes and shoes and things, and put it in the middle of what would have been a moderately-busy street if it weren’t blocked-off, and you get what I found. It’s a great idea, at least on a Sunday. I don’t know if there is actually a dedicated farmer’s market in town, but I’m going to bet on a big no, considering the number of booths at this thing. I found some good grapes and sweets for myself.
As for the rest of last week…
I took the train into Genoa a couple of days to try to get to the International Mobility Office at the main campus, so I could actually sign up for an Italian class. However, that whole experience was a huge failure. Talking to everyone I talked to in the main buildings led to a five-hour wild goose chase the first day. On the second try, I got into the right building on the first try, but I couldn’t actually find the office that I was looking for, owing mostly to the lack of Italian language skills that I was trying to remedy. Additionally, the flipside of the beautiful architecture evident in all of the old buildings that make up the center of the campus in Genoa is that all of these buildings are irritatingly labyrinthine.
I finally found a different office with a disturbingly similar name to the one I was trying to find, in the language department, but that office was, of course, closed. I took some emails off the door and vowed never to put myself through that again. Of course, the first return email directed me to get in contact with the office I could never find. After having sent this office emails on last Thursday and yesterday, and having gotten no reply either time, I’m convinced that the office does not, in fact, exist. I may just go with a copy of Rosetta Stone that was lent to my father.
One note on the trains. The vast majority of train transit, at least between Savona and Genoa, is actually underground. The terrain around here is just too harsh to do it much differently. The Autostrada — Italian highway — gives a nice contrast, though. Instead of all tunnels, the Autostrada, at least as much as I’ve seen of it, is half tunnels and half bridges, and some road actually on the ground here and there. In any case, train travel hasn’t been very scenic for me so far.
Another couple of days last week were spent getting familiar with the systems in the lab at the campus in Savona. As much as I personally find all that stuff fascinating, I don’t really want the blog to be about it. Regardless, it’s going to be fun.
The rest of my time has largely been spent relaxing or trying to make the last post. I won’t be in the hostel too much longer, and I didn’t want to miss my chance.
Also, since words are boring, check this out.
There is a greater presence of older cars apparently being used as daily drivers here than in America, but I don’t think I’ve seen one of these things before more than twice or so.
There are a bunch of kids running around and screaming in the Seminary courtyard, so it is time for this post to be done.