I MADE FRIENDS!! WHAT? THAT’S RIGHT! YOU HEARD IT HEAR FIRST. I never thought that would happen, especially so quickly. At best I thought that I would maybe travel occasionally with some other people that are participating in the same program I am.

Well, I decided to head from the school to a Bar that is about five minutes, no, two minutes walking distance. I’m not a fan of heading out at night into a city in a foreign country that I do not know very well. But, I figure, the bar is close enough, that if anything were to happen, I would be okay. Thinking smart people. Thinking smart. Actually, the Facebook page link to the bar that I was at is right here: https://www.facebook.com/BarDelGiardino.

One person asked me, “why am I in Italy if I do not speak Italian?” Well, that is exactly why I am here. What better way to learn the language, than to immerse myself in a city that barely speaks English? He politely agreed that this was a good way. His English was pretty good, and he promptly told me that he learned it by playing on American sports teams.

I ended up chatting with three other people at the bar, including the bar tender, and she was very friendly, (amichevole). Communicating was difficult. There English was so so and my Italian was so-so. Nonetheless, we still managed to speak with one another and connect. If I was asked a question in English, I would try my best to respond in Italian. I used my Italian where I could. If I was unsure of the conjugation of a verb or the pronunciation of a word, I asked. They inspire me, motivate to get this language down. They were patient with me, as I was with them, and they understood that I was learning the language, and did not make fun of me, no matter how I embarrassed myself and stumbled my way through the words. They suggested other parts of Italy that I might want to visit. They actually do not recommend Ancona. Wish I had met them sooner, before I booked my hostel. Guess I’ll find out for myself this weekend. Still, the site seemed interesting, and former cultural exchange participants that have gone to Ancona seemed to like it. One even suggested that I try out  an Irish bar that is there.

My new amici even invited me out tonight. Sadly, I had to decline, because I plan on catching an early train to Civitanova tomorrow to explore. I’m excited.

However, I plan to see them tomorrow night. I have finally found people to help me converse in Italian, no matter how many embarrassing mistakes I make.


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