I actually received my information from AFS three weeks ago, but I haven't been able to update this yet with my flight information! It was really nice to finally receive my information, and all of the AFS Italy exchange students from the Bay Area are taking a flight together to New York! Meeting and making conversation with fellow exchange students is so easy because there is always an ice-breaker! My orientation in New York is on September 4th, so our flight leaves really early (6 am)! The orientation carries over to the 5th, and we leave for our international departure that evening, with a layover in Zurich, Switzerland, and then arrival in Rome mid-afternoon! I can't wait to meet the other US kids that are going to Italy!
Thursday, July 16, 2015
First off, this actually happened about two weeks ago, and I just haven't had the time to post.. sorry!
About three weeks ago, I received my host family.. or so I thought. Initially, the first host family that was sent to me was actually my secondary host family, who I may or may not be transferring to during December, depending on whether or not my first host family is able to/ wants to host me for another semester. I am in a permanent multiple host family placement, which means that I might have two different host families during my time abroad. About two weeks ago, I received an email from my host father whom I had no knowledge of, so I called AFS. They helped me figure it out, and told me that the host family that was listed was actually my second host family! Once I found that out, I started to correspond with my new family and get a sense for my home-away-from-home.
I couldn't have asked for a better family! They are super loving and close, and they seem to include each other in all of their activities! They live in the city centre of Pisa, and they have four sons, who are eighteen, seventeen, thirteen, and eleven. When I first saw a picture of them, I knew that this would be a great year; they looked so close-knit and joyous! Since the host family that I might transfer to is located in Ponsacco, AFS recommended that I attend XXV Aprile in Pontedera, since it is close to both homes. XXV Aprile is a liceo scientifico school, or one that is focused on math and sciences. I am so excited, not just because of the school, but also since I will be taking a train on my commute from school! Did I mention that I love trains?
Pisa on the Map
As a former resident of Texas, I am extremely thankful that I was placed in northern Italy. Although Pisa does not have much snowfall, that doesn't mean it isn't possible!
My host family! From left to right: My oldest brother Pietro, my second youngest brother Alessandro, my second oldest brother Francesco, my mom Giulia, my youngest brother Giulio, and my father Paolo.
I love my host family already, and I can't wait to meet them in person! 50 days till I depart!