If I had an opportunity to become a full-time resident of my study abroad location, then I would want to live a little north of the city center in a small place just for myself with a fire place much like the one in the picture. The type of place you can have your friends over to watch a basketball game or eat a meal.
I would probably walk into an Italian bank and tell them my qualifications for finance and try to get a job with my high knowledge of subjects like the difference between junk and corporate grade bonds. I would further explore the suburbs of Florence because I definitely did not get enough time doing that. Maybe I would even explore eating dinner at night on a regular basis at 8 or 9pm (such is the case for the average Florentine
Here is a brief letter to myself at the beginning of the program:
The first thing you should do is drop Italian 3 by any means necessary and sign up for Italian Film studies. I hear it is far more entertaining because you really enjoy films. Also, do not worry you will do fine socially, just relax and go with the flow in Italy. GO OUT! See the culture of Europe. Impressions are important with teachers. Go see Milan at 3 am, Go eat at that trattoria you heard about, go get as much cultural intelligence as possible. Please try all the delicious pizza places and rate them from worst to best. Do spend your time awake and talking to people in a foreign language. Make sure to not use the atm machine near my house as all the people in my apartment had their credit cards stolen from it. Eat Ribollita and Zuppa di verdure. Find fresh markets and buy the foods from there. Live up the short period of time you will have to live abroad. Expect to work hard and play hard,
With LOVE, Sam Impellicceiri
A time I had to creatively problem solve while abroad was when I was lost in the city with a dead cell phone. I walked around town unfamiliar with the neighborhood I was in and decided to try to keep walking in one direction until I noticed something. This was before I spoke enough Italian to simply ask for directions. So, eventually I found a sign pointing Towards “Santa Maria Novella” Which was the train station of Florence. I was able to navigate towards the river and to my home from there. I learned keep persevering and keep your eye out for the next solution because everything in life is there for you if you read the signs.