Okay so last week I had some new adventures that I wasnt at all expecting to part take in. My first big expierence happened on Wednesday in Milan on my class trip. I asked my host parents and my school friends what exactly I would be doing on the class trip to Milan. And they all said the same thing, you will find out when you get there. I even tried reading the permission slip about the trip but of course it was in Italian so I couldnt get all the details. Rats.

So Wednesday morning I got so sleep in a little and my mama drove me to the train station to meet my class and teachers. Of course we had left the car outside the night before and there was a frost so we had a rather hard time getting the engine going. So I arrived at the train station late, but got on the train just fine and headed to Milan. Thankfully it was a georgous sunny day unlike majority of the days here! We all walked around the Duomo and had a toured the inside of the church. This time there wasnt a mass going on so more of the church was open than when I came on Sunday. After we explored the gallery next to the Duomo and then walked to this giant castel in the center of Milan. The tours for the castel were really pricey so we just explored the outside on our own for about 10 minutes becuase it was freezing and we were all starving for lunch.

After seeing the castel we took the metro to this new museum. While our teachers were buying our tickets we all quickly went into a cafe to buy pizzas for lunch. The museum was unlike something I had ever been to. It was a museum where you learn without using you eyes, but thru using your ears, hands and nose. Basicaly it was a museum for blind people. Now I wasnt expecting that we would go there, I thought we would go to some "very rich in culture" art gallery or something. This museum was so cool, we started off in a small room where a blind woman talked to us about seeing only darkness, reading braile and how the other senses become stronger when you dont have the sense of sight.

After they showed us how to usewalking canes and brought us into these series of dark rooms. Now when I say dark I mean pitch black, I cant see my hand infront of my face dark. Each room had a theme for example the beach, a classroom, a city, a food market and a forest. We had a blinded guide to take a thru all the room and we would have to figuare out what kind of room we were in by the smell and the sound. We would also feel different object around us. At first I was really scared using the cane and having to walk around the obsticales. All of us were bumping into each other and at first having a difficult time getting around the rooms. So many times Id back myself into a corner and have to idea where anyone was and just wanted to scream "can we turn the lights on please!" By the end we made it to the final room which was a cafe and we even ordered drinks and snacks and payed with real money, we even sat at a tabel and talked. It was a serious taste of walking in someone elses shoes!

Being in that museum and walking thru the dark was an amazing esxpierence. I never really thought what it was like for blind people. It really a drastic change from seeing everything to just darkness. My mom has always told me that I should be thankful that I was born healthy, and she is so very right!

So basiclly I only had school from Thursday-Saurday becuase Monday and Tuesday were holidays and I had the school trip on Wednesday = )

Friday I saw the Christmas Carol in 3D with my friend Ray from Candada on Friday. We were both wicked excited to see the movie but we were sadly disappointed. The movie tickets themselves cost 9 euro so $13.50... I think it was my most expensive movie ticket yet! So we sat down for the movie and were surrounded by little Italian kids and their parents and the movie started off great, with the music playing and you get that Christmas rush... Then the narrorator started speaking in Italian, great. We thought that it would be in English with Italian subtitles but no. So as the movie progressed I noticed it didnt have the same feeling as when I watched the muppet version. This new version was rather... Scary! I did the whole jumping out of my seat, gasping thing for serval parts. Even the ghosts of the past, present and future had this erie feeling. The little 5 year old boy sitting next to me was crying his eyes out! I just didnt get that cheery and happy feeling you get from watching a Christmas movie. Oh well, I guess not everything is what you expected.

Alrighty then on Sunday I finally got to go to Brescia! = ) I had been dying to go to Brescia since Ive been in Italy because all my good friends live in or near the city. So Sunday morning my advisor Chiara picked me, Michelle and the new exchange student Akiralie from Australia up and we drove about an hour to Brescia. It was a bright sunny day but extremly cold!! Luckily I brought my new matching hat, scarf and gloves set so I was prepared. When we got to Brescia there was about 30 exchange students and we all got lunch at this giant cafe. We were all chatting about a mile a minute since we hadnt all seen each other since orientation in Aprica. After lunch we went to this small building where we met some local volunteers who had prepared a surprise for us. Turns out we were all going to dress up in Christmas themed clothes for the holiday Santa Lucia and we were going to be a parade of exchange students and march thru Brescia singing and handing out candy. Kinda a cheesey I know, but when your with your friends you just laugh about it.
So the volunteers were all dressing us and asked all the blonde haired, blue eyed girls to come to the front. Out of 30 only 5 of us matched that description. They wanted to use one of us to march infront and lead the parade being Santa Lucia. Now she gets to wear the big gold crown covered in ivy leaves and has white candels on top of the crown. She also wears a long white dress with a red sash. Bascially they had the five of us try on the crown and see which one of us could pull of the part. The crown fit my head well but it weighed so much it kind of threw off my balance when walking with it. They ended up picking my friend Marianna from Finland who fit the part perfectly with her naturally long light blonde hair. Anyways all the girls who are short dressed up as elves, medium height girls were angels (me) and the tall girls were lumber jacks. Most of the boys played the part of Santa and a couple were lumber jack men. One was even a reindeer = p We even wore these pins with our countries flag on it just in case if a person saw us they would instantly know we were all very foreign.
The parade was fun, me and most of my friends were angels so we had long white dresses with silver sash and silver crown and carried a white candel. We would all randomly stop and have to sing Jingle Bells, Silent Night or other Christmas songs. Only the Aussies and Americans really knew the words so it was it was up to us to lead = p
After the parade we all got coffees and hot chocolates and said out goodbyes. When exchange students say goodbye its sometimes forever. Some kids only stay for a a couple of months and others live really far away and will be going home before you. Sad but true.
Although Brescia was a very fun day! = )

So this week Ive learned that being abroad means expect the unexpected. I never know when I wake up that Ill be thrown a giant curve ball or not. Sometimes I handel these obsticales really well other times.. well its a lesson learned. For example this week my English teacher told me that I needed to give an oral presentation on the book Pride and Prejudice to my 3rd year English class. She gave me about 2 days to prepare. Sadly I was only less than half way threw with the book. It was simply up to me to pull together an accurate, easy to follow and interesting oral presentation which I did ( I got an 8 out of 10 which is equal to an A back home) = ) Another time I threw away my English literature notes from another class and was later asked a lot of questions by the teacher about the notes. I ended up sounding like a total dumb American blond = ( Now that Im abroad and I dont have my mom asking me what I have for homework and seeing me do it, Im realising its only up to me to study really. I guess ill be ready for college! = )

This is my last week of school before Christmas break = ) Tonight my school is having a holiday concert so im going with my family and friends. My host brother will also be preforming with his band so it should be a good night. Tomorrow I have an English and Spanish exams. Ick. Some what prepared for those. Hopefully they will be the only exams so I can finish this week in a stress free note! So until next time....