Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Am I Being Pensive?

It's been a while since I've written.

Today, I realized how big of a life change this move has been.  Its not been one thing that has caused this realization, more of a culmination of many things, little insignificant things really.  Such as how much more likely I am to say hello (Bonjour!!) upon entering a store, how I've toned down my natural volume of speaking, or how just walking can clear my head and cause me to be appreciative of where I am living.

This past week was boring. No exciting adventures, just... a lot of work on my dissertation/research project/thesis, whatever you want to call it. It was good to flesh out some ideas, focus on what questions to ask, and how to ask these questions.  However, it was not the most fun week I've ever had.

This week will end with a trip to London. I've only wanted to go since I was 10.  Thus a childhood dream come true on this Valentine's Day. My goal.. meet my favorite redhead, Prince Harry, convince him to fall in love with me--as I am already in love with him, and then become bffs with Kate.  I will keep you all up to date on my journey to the throne. ;) I am so looking forward to this trip. I can't even make a list of the places I want to see because I'm so excited. Excitement is overriding my type A personality--now thats a BIG deal.

As I sit in my pajamas, listening to Pride and Prejudice, in the dark. I am reminded how this has been life changing.. but somethings don't change. Sometimes a warm bed is all the physical support you need, though emotional support can span oceans. Sometimes the reassuring noise of Mr. Darcy crossing the misty fields in the morning or Lizzie standing on the edge of a cliff in the Peak District can bring you home no matter if it is really 6,000 miles away. And here, in the South of France and back in Raleigh, North Carolina.. night is still night and darkness doesn't discriminate.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014


I yelled "andiamo" more times than I can count this weekend in Milan. Truth be told, I didn't know what it meant when I first said it. I heard it in a movie, Phantom of the Opera--nerd alert-- I know.   It means "Let's go " in Italian.  It rolls off the tongue so easily, an-dee-YAMM-oooo. You have to do the hand gestures to get the full Italian effect though.  You know, your fingers are drawn together in a cone-ish shape and you shake your wrist back and forth as you speak, with emphasis on the heavy syllable in the word. If you're feeling fancy then you kiss your fingers before you do it.  

 I was so excited to be in Milan that I think I hyped it up beyond what it could deliver.   I wasn't disappointed by any means, nor was I underwhelmed. I think perhaps, I was so overwhelmed that I couldn't and still can't process. Here I was, in a city I had dreamed about visiting, and it all seemed...bland.  That's never been used to describe Milano before, that I can assure you.  Don't get me wrong. The Duomo, the Galleria, Santa Maria della Grazie, Lake Como, Albini's factory, and old Bergamo were breath taking.   I was so ready to go, that once I got there I felt a little "blah."

I just found myself wishing for something else. How's that for blunt?  I loved Milano. And I enjoyed my time there immensely. Something was just missing.   This trip felt very disconnected from how amazing Lyon was.  Maybe that's my problem.  I'm trying to compare my time in Lyon with my time in Milan. They are two separate cities, with two different groups of people, in two totally different countries. 

Lesson of the day: Reign in your expectations.    

I knew so little about Lyon when I went. And I loved every second. I knew a decent bit about Milan and was left feeling empty.  My expectations for Lyon were low, and my expectations for Milan were high. So what does that mean going forward?   I'm not sure, I'm going to London next, but thankfully I have this week and  weekend, filled with school so that I can stop being so pensive and maybe attempt to get my expectations in order. 

Check back later for a more bubbly typical SK Milano post readers.