Thursday, January 26, 2012

Benvenuti a Via Montanini!

Who's ready for an introduction to my homestay? I live with the lovely Stella Palazzolo (and Rachel, of course) on Via Montanini 28, and it is wonderful, particularly as regards location. We are 5 minutes from school, 5 minutes from the Campo, 2 minutes from the grocery store... you get the point.

The view from the street...

If you're wondering why there is a giant green neon sign above the archway, that is because the Albergo hotel lives right next door to us. If you go down this tunnel and open the door on your right, you'll be in Stella's apartment building; if you go the tunnel and open the door on the left, you'll be in the Albergo.

Stella lives on the 2nd floor, and her apartment actually takes up the whole floor, consisting of 3 bedrooms, 1 bath (we think... ), a teensy kitchen, and a dining/living room. (side note: Stella owns a piano, so I'll be able to keep my fingers from getting too itchy while I'm here!)

Here's our room...

This used to be Stella's son Francesco's room, and apparently he is the one who painted the wardrobe. My bed is the one on the right!

The view of the other side of the room, with desks, window, and the all-important radiator (no central heating in Italian houses... brr)...

Here's my desk, complete with pictures I brought with me to stave off homesickness...

Now, you may be asking, "why is this room so neat and clean? Faith must have taken these pictures the first day she moved in. There's no way her room is this clean after a week."

Wellll, firstly, my roommate is a clean person, so I feel bad letting my messy nature show. Secondly, and most importantly, Stella cleans our room every day. Seriously. She comes in, makes the beds (remakes them if we attempted to make them ourselves), straightens our desks, hangs up any stray jackets... it's ridiculous. So, we feel really terrible if we leave our stuff around, and then any stray mess is taken care of by Stella. She even does our laundry for us! This gets slightly awkward when it comes to washing underwear and the like, since Europeans are not so into using clothes dryers - they hang their clothes up to drip-dry, generally on a line outside the window of the apartment. I could show you a picture of the laundry outside the apartment right now, but I really feel no desire to show the internet my underwear, so here is a random example from Siena.

It's quite picturesque when it's not one's own laundry.

And that is where I spend my time! At least, it is when I'm not in classes, wandering through Siena, or soaking up the sun in the Campo (I plan to spend a lot of time lizard-ing it up in the Campo - it's wonderful there, and a perfect place to people-watch).

Ciao a tutti!

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