Just a quick-ish blurb about class tonight, because I wanted to talk about the living situation but it rained all afternoon and I couldn’t get the pictures I wanted to go with that post. *Sadness.*
So: as mentioned before, this entire first month of the program is dedicated solely to an intensive course on Italian. Three 9-student classes, each meeting with a different teacher from 9:00 to 10:30 and 11:00 to 12:30 — in other words, a pretty lenient schedule. Also the environment is relaxed and cosy and has a door onto a balcony, so it’s hardly an excruciating place to spend the morning.
Assisting with the non-excruiating pleasantness is our teacher, a man going by the very Italian name of Umberto. He’s funny, encouraging…and kind of *always* cheerful. Really: last Wednesday(?) he missed class, and we found out the next day that this was because (to paraphrase what we were told) he’d been in the hospital on account of being beaten up by a hobo at a train station. Aside from being one of the best excuses for absenteeism I’ve ever heard, this is also a very not-happy thing to have happen — but in comes Umberto on Thursday, gesturing his way through the story (“Pow pow!” / *exaggerated shock face*), and then getting on with the lesson. Which, as always, included a single Italian pop song playing on repeat while we did our exercises, and therefore also included our teacher’s musical accompaniment.
…No comment. BUT, I think we do all realize how lucky we are to have the Linguaviva staff and guys like Umberto to be showing us around the language. Just all over molto carino, and it’s making the entire stay in Florence so much less stressful than it could have been.
As far as the Italian itself — it’s actually amazing how much you can learn in a week. Still have nowhere near enough, of course, and I think we’ll get to the end of the 15 weeks having only just realized how much we don’t know, but it’s exciting anyway. For right now, we just need WAY more vocabulary, and then we really just need to keep going to class and making progress on our grammar and usage and pronunciation. You know, so that we can do stuff like say “faccio” (pronounced “fah-tcho”) without making it sound like “fack-you.”
…And that’s pretty much all I have to say about class, I guess. It clips along at a good pace but is completely doable, and the quiz we took on Friday morning was the next-best thing to a joke; if you studied at all, you were fine. So hopefully that will continue, and non-stressful + very useful + fun = we may well be in for an excellent September.
And now I’ve got to go bed while I can still stay upright enough to change into pajamas, and you all have a great..afternoon? Yeah : )