The first week of school is over (and I've procrastinated so much on writing this that the first day of the second week is nearly over as well). We have 17 third graders, which is just over half the number of students that were in my class in Cambridge, and there are only 4 boys. They are a rather chatty class so far, both in English and especially Italian, as all but 2 of them speak Italian at home.
It was an exciting week outside of school as well. Last weekend, several of us went to Venice, which is only about a two hour train ride away. Unfortunately, due to some ticket and scheduling confusion, this two hour journey took me nearly 6 hours and 3 trains. Venice is a beautiful, and touristy, city. It's nice to be able to walk wherever without worrying about cars, since the transportation is primarily by boat. After I finally met up with the other girls who had gone on an earlier train, we spent most of our time walking around the city looking in shop windows including many pastry shops, browsing a fabulous flea market/craft fair where I bought a necklace made of Venetian glass, and taking pictures.
Wednesday was Parent's Night, which is a sort of Back-to-School night, Tuesday and Friday were not-actually-the-draft parties for the school fantasy football league (I'm on a team with the chemistry teacher, and neither of us know what we are doing), and Thursday was the opening of a new, amazing cafe called Zoe Food. It's owned by relatives of the associate teacher in grade 2, so we all got invited to see the new place and sample Anna and Stefano's fabulous and healthy food. We had such a great time on Thursday night, we went back on Saturday. I had a banana and peanut butter smoothie. Yep, Anna has peanut butter (yay!), and she offered to put it in smoothies for us, even though it isn't on the menu.
To close out the week, a few of us went hiking outside of a nearby village, in Val Rosandra. This is a mostly limestone area, so the topography is pretty neat. The park is only about a half hour bus ride away, and our bus passes for school get us all the way there. We walked to a waterfall and up to a church built in the 1200s, enjoying the view and the return of the beautiful weather after it had been so cold last week.