Southern Italy, Part I
First, please forgive me for taking so long to post. Our trip began when we arrived in Catania, Sicily on June 2nd. It has been an amazing and also trying whirlwind since then. Italian WiFi is notoriously unreliable, understandably so as they don’t want to dig through so much hidden treasure to put wires in the ground. Fortunately, before departure I invested in a foreign prepaid SIM card which gives me data 99% of the time. It looks like I’ll be doing all of my class work and blogging on this tiny little iPhone.
Thus far, we have explored some very rural places in Sicily! Catania is a port city, and once we got away from the airport, it was quite beautiful in its own way. Just one night, then we took a long train ride to Siracusa, passing through some amazing countryside, with the Mediterranean sprawling out in majestic emerald on our left.
In Siracusa, we visited the Temple of Apollo as well as an ancient amphitheater. I had prepared a presentation I was to give in a few days’ time — my subject of choice, the influence of Pythagoras the Ionian Greek philosopher in Southern Italy. Again, because I could only access it from my phone, I opted one free afternoon to sit beside the temple and hand write my presentation. As Pythagoras had a Christ-like status in his time, he was thought to be the son of Apollo, or Apollo himself incarnate. So I felt the temple gave me some inspiration to tighten up my report. It was also lovely to sit there and work, and listen to the people around me.
I know Italian very limitedly, having studied the language for one year. But after overcoming my shyness, discovered that I could in fact communicate! I must sound very stupid to the natives, but at least I can survive asking for food and bathrooms.
To be continued…!