Wednesday, September 25, 2013

L'acqua fa male, il vino fa cantare...

"L'acqua fa male, il vino fa cantare..."
"Water is bad, wine makes you sing"
One of the first days in Rome this was said to us by one of the professors staying with us Prof. Balena. I can definitely say he is one of the most interesting people I have met since we have been here. We all met him at Logan Airport and he traveled with us to Rome. He is originally from Napoli and always enjoys telling us about his life growing up. Every day he gives me something to laugh about and he is always a happy person. For a couple of days he went back to Napoli to visit his mother who is sick and he brought back to us mozzarella di bufala. This is mozzarella made from water buffalo and was probably my favorite thing I have had since being here. It was our main meal for dinner and we ate it with the most delicious tomatoes (another one of my favorites). The director, Prof. Bonanno, kept telling us that we were going to be transported once we ate some of this and I don't recall a single person complaining about this meal. Il formaggio (cheese) is so delicious here but this particular mozzarella is unlike any other. When we go to Napoli for a weekend excursion we will definitely be getting more and I cannot wait.
The reason for my quote earlier was not only to introduce Prof. Balena but also to share with you one of the "little things" that I have learned since being here. We don't usually have wine with dinner every single night but for some people, Balena, that is very different. Balena actually said "water makes you rust, wine makes you sing" which I find to be more funny and accurate. Since I've been here I haven't had many opportunities to try different wines but I definitely want to start trying something new. So far, I can't complain about any of the wines I have tried. Anyways, back to my main reason, the little things.  The way I interpreted this quote was that if you keep doing the normal and boring day-to-day things we are just going to rust, or get old without anything interesting happening. However, if we spice things up or try something new than we will go through life singing and full of joy. You are more than welcome to interpret the quote any way you like, but that is simply my opinion. I thought of this today when I was sitting down to lunch after coming back from my italian class and we were having bruschetta (pronounced brusKetta) for our meal and it was probably the most perfect thing ever. In the US when you order bruschetta you order it as an appetizer. This bruschetta not only had tomatoes and parsley, but there was also bruschetta with cheese and anchovies, and then bruschetta with cheese and prosciutto (ham). I LOVED IT! I didn't know that it was anchovies at first and I probably wouldn't have it again but this tiny meal was exactly what I needed after having italian class. I would have never eaten this at home but here I am forced to try new foods and I am enjoying every second of it. Besides the fact that we have water with every meal, the bruschetta today was my "wine" of the day. It was my something new that made me sing and I have been looking for those moments every day since I've been here and I hope you do the same!


  1. Reading your blog makes my heart sing. I am living vicariously through you as you try so many new things, especially the food. Manga. I can't wait to read about your time in Florence. I love you. Love, Mom

  2. What a great interpretation of that quote. You are doing exactly what you should be doing to make the most of this wonderful opportunity. I cannot wait to hear about Florence. Stay in the moment. It is serving you well. Love Aunt Lisa

  3. Colleen - you have a gift for writing. The visuals you create, and the tastes I feel are vivid when I read your blogs. You are lovingly embracing this experience, and life. I love how you are connecting your academic experiences, geographical experiences, and the spiritual experiences. Stay with it, enjoying every moment. Your joy and zest for life comes through loud and clear. Continue to keep your senses working, and your heart open. This experiences is just one more piece of the amazing young woman you are. Love, Heidi