Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Pitfall of Human Nature

I'm an idiot. Just like I've done several times before, I seem to have become infatuated with someone who is completely unattainable. I don't know the formula for why this occurs (and seems to happen again and again). I get blindsided and find myself waist-deep in emotions I wish I had better control over. It would be great if there were something tangible I could blame (i.e. wine, work, insomnia, my washing machine), but I can only blame myself. I know it will pass in time, but muddling through it is such a pain. Until then, I'll have another glass of wine.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Project: FETUS

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
I just returned from a wonderful weekend down on the Umbria-Tuscany border with Mary, Casey, Kathy, Mey, Mike, Chris, and Will. This is the huge 18th century, fully-stocked, country house we rented, and it was amazing.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
This is the valley it overlooked on Thanksgiving morning. Breathtaking.

Mary & Casey
Originally uploaded by currtdawg
The eight of us took two cars down, leaving after work on Wednesday evening. We woke up Thursday morning and immediately began preparations for our Thanksgiving meal that afternoon.

Kathy & Mey
Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Everyone contributed, and luckily, Mey knew how to cook a turkey. I made the macaroni and cheese and a pumpkin cheesecake.

Mike & Mary
Originally uploaded by currtdawg
And after dinner, we all contributed to the clean-up effort, which was probably on scale with Katrina.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
That evening, we sat around the fire and played games. It was cozy and terrific.

The Gang in Montepulciano
Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Friday, we all drug ourselves out of bed, laid around all morning, and finally decided to make an early-afternoon trip to the medieval hill town of Montepulciano. It was a little chilly, but the town was amazing.

Casey, Kathy, & Mey
Originally uploaded by currtdawg
The girls decided to do aerobics to keep warm.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
After we left Montepulciano, we decided to try and hit up a winery or two, which wasn't difficult as you can't swing a dead cat around there without hitting a winery. We all brought back several bottles of Chianti, Nobile, and even olive oil.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Saturday, we all went to Siena, one of the most famous towns in central Italy. It was sunny and warmer, which made the whole sightseeing experience a little better.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
We gathered in the piazza for pizza and gelato, and it was great just watching all the locals hang out and enjoy their afternoon.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
We spent all afternoon walking the streets, shopping, stopping for caffe, and checking out the home of St. Catherine.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Siena is definitely a place I'd like to visit again, perhaps in the summer when they have their big horse races in the piazza.

Casa San Martino
Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Sunday, we woke up and headed back to Aviano. The great thing about the weekend was how relaxing it was. Nobody was in a hurry to do anything, and the sense of fun-loving fellowship was everywhere.
The whole photostream is available here. By the way, have I mentioned how impressed I am with the photography capabilities of the iPhone 4. There are tons of applications the camera utilises, particularly the Hipstamatic, that just blow me away. Highly recommended.
Oh, and one more thing... Project: FETUS was the code name for our mission. Fantastically Excellent Tuscany Umbria Safari. Don't judge us.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Danny Boy

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Dan moved in with me on Tuesday so he wouldn't have to stay in lodging, and this morning, I took him to the airport. He's leaving Italy and on his way to New Mexico. He'll be dearly missed by everyone here, but I know someday, somehow, our paths will cross again. Good luck, Danny!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Over My Head

I won't lie. These two classes are kicking my butt. Actually, neither class is very difficult, and one of them is a breeze. But the other one is very time consuming and a bit overwhelming. Since Thursday was Veteran's Day, I decided to take Friday off and make it a four-day weekend. The goal was to catch up on all my homework and papers, and it was definitely the right decision. I feel well-rested and ready for this week. I just hope I can keep up through the rest of the term.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Back to Bologna

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Eric and I went to Bologna this weekend with the intention of attending a festival, hitting up bars and clubs, and dancing all night. We took the train down and arrived Saturday afternoon, checked into our hotel, and then trekked around the city just to see the sights.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Bologna is one of those cities that blends the old and the new seamlessly. There are medieval towers alongside boutiques and cafes. We saw this street performer riding a unicycle and juggling fire sticks. Impressive.
The longer we walked, the hungrier we got. So, we stopped for dinner and gorged ourselves on pasta. Did I mention there was wine, too? Like, lots of wine.
After dinner we stumbled back to our hotel for what was supposed to be an hour-long nap before hitting the bars. Well, that hour-long nap turned into a five-hour nap, meaning we missed pretty much everything we went down there to do. Still, it was nice to get away for a couple days and see something different.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
While waiting for our train back home, we decided to take some cool pictures with the Hipstamatic App on my iPhone. It's by far my favourite photography app, and the images it creates are spectacular. It takes some experimentation, but it's definitely worth the effort.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Eric decided we should splurge for first class train tickets on the way back, so we rode in style with free wine and snacks.

Originally uploaded by currtdawg
Even though we didn't get to go dancing or anything, it was still a fun trip. Short weekend excursions are one of the great things about living in Italy, and I can't wait until the next one.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Calling Me Back

When my alarm goes off in the morning, I usually lay in bed a little while longer, savouring the warmth, mentally planning my day, and playing with my phone. After a few minutes, I drag myself out onto the cold floor and begin preparations for my day. It was particularly chilly this morning, making it extra hard to get up. I couldn't find my slippers and my feet were freezing. After going downstairs to start some espresso and make my breakfast, I went back upstairs to make my bed. I reached in between the covers and it was still all warm inside, but I somehow resisted the urge to get back in. That, my friends, is what they call "will power."