Sunday, June 17, 2007

The Follow

When starting the “spy” project I was very excited because normally I would not even think about following someone. My 007 came out and I was ready. I decided to look for a person that was in the area I lived in because I live there but don’t spend too much time exploring that area. 10 minutes into my search I saw this man walking. He looked like he was in his 60-70s. He was wearing a suit, holding a briefcase, and wearing glasses. He walked slowly so I figured this would be a better person to follow. I caught his walking in front of the bus stand and thought he was going on the but… no, He decided to walk past it and then just stopped in the middle of the road and just stood there. He acted very strange, as though he did not know where he was or what to do next. He proceeded to wobble on the street…then walked over to the benches. He stood there for a few min. and then walked over to the tram stop and I thought he was going to get on tram but instead he stood next to it a stared at it. I was so nervous about following because I did not want him to get mad at me. Other people were noticing me following him but he was oblivious. He looked lost himself. He proceeded to just wander the same area back and forth. I stood behind a poll and stared at him. He looked very confused and just walked from street to road and back again. He then finally decided to sit down on the bench and looked as though he was tired or very hot. He then began to fall asleep. I am not sure if he was waiting for someone or not but he was very funny to watch and worth following.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

who would have thought sitting could be so fun!

6:50 I got settled on this little white bench in the middle of an open area. There were many people doing many things. The first thing I noticed was this little old woman sitting at the end of the bench I was sitting on. There was a bench next to me and a light post almost touching my right shoulder…of course I think ahead of time that it might get dark and I should sit next the light because I don’t want to be in the dark by myself. In the distance I saw a few Indians selling products like shirts and maps and other little cheap things. Then there was this long strange white container with I don’t even know what. The road was about 20 footsteps always from me. I saw many cars, buses, trams, and of course motor scooters driving and honkining, I have gotten used to it.
While I sit there in my little spot at the end of the bench I look down around me and found this broken wire with a plug and decide it’s a good artifact to keep and a cap from a bottle. As I was sitting I noticed that this little area was a very good meeting point because many couples, family and friends meet in the middle or wait for someone to come. As I was sitting I noticed on my left side a tobacco store and a restaurant with seating outside. Further ahead was a pharmacy.
As I was sitting in my little bench a few women sat on the bench next to me. They start chatting in Italian and from what I could understand, they were waiting for some other people to go to the restaurant. They seemed as though this was a usual place to wait and sit.
Sitting is an interesting concept for me. On the one had, in philly I never sit around and look at people and just watch philly. I am usually running around and doing homework or going to the gym. Even in Rome I don’t get to sit much. I feel as though I need to see everything or I become guilty that I am in Rome not doing anything. Then I put my little note book into my bag and just took in my surroundings. I was actually happy I got to slow down and just sit. Sitting felt like a relief. Being by myself was also something different. The girls and I are always together and I feel as though there is almost never any me time. Even though I love being around people, this time on my little bench felt so liberating and southing.
In the background… I hear dogs barking, people walking, and a man on his cell phone. Some people are noticing me as they walk by. Some are starting to stare. There are many men walking around this area, much less women.
Then a group of men pass me by and stare me down. They give me a look...that meant: I will take you to a dark corner and do scary things to you….eww.
This little boy about 12 years old sits next to me and starts talking to his mother that’s sitting on the bench next to mine. Then his father sat down next to him and proceeded to wait. He was smiling at me and then asked me something in Italian and I said hi and that I did not know Italian. He then pushed his son on the shoulder to talk to me. He blurted out in English what are you doing. I said I am sitting and doing homework. The young boy was not excited to translate but did so and the father became very excited. I then tried to tell him I was studying in Roma. He asked me many other things like how old I was, where I lived, if I liked Rome, where I was born, what did I do in Rome, and what my name was. He introduced me to the rest of his family and was very excited to learn anything about me. He also knew about Bush, Clinton and Hillary. We had a long conversation with the some translating what we both said. The son was not very happy to translate but I think he warmed up to me when I said he was excellent translator and knew English very well. I felt so conformable with them and welcomed. His family was dressed up waiting for other family members to come to go to dinner. The son’s name was Francesco and the father’s name was Ombrajo. He kept saying compliments to me and that he liked talking to me.
Then some time passes and this young man sits down next to me. He was handsome and looked like he was also waiting for someone. I thought he was waiting for his girlfriend for some reason. Then I look over and some men started to play music next to restaurant to make money. He noticed I took out my camera and started to take pictures of the men who were singing and playing music. He smiled at me and started to say something in Italian. I told him sorry I don’t know Italian that well. To my surprise he started speaking English. We started to chat and I found out he was a chef. He worked in many restaurants in trestevere. He told me he was meeting a friend after work. We got into a long conversation and I learned many interesting things about him. Unfortunately, I had to go because I had to meet with the girls in the piazza. So I said bye and it was nice talking to him. He said he wanted to see me again and gave me his card to call him. I said thanks and that I might call him. Well, I left my little spot and can admit I wanted to sit there some more. I love meeting new people and just learning about them and their story. It was a great ending to a fun, interesting, and relaxing 2 hours.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Drifting in Trestevere

I found many interesting objects, moments, and people while on my drift: I found a poster on the wall of a building. I thought it was a great object because it was the representation of important events or issues in the community. As I was passing the unbelievable little bakery and food shop, I had to buy a little sweet to taste the "life of the town!" I took the bag from my yummy cookies with nutella inside. Since our whole class loved the wine so much I had to take it with me to remember a yummy lunch in Trestevere. This wine was called: Il Comparone. One of the tastiest parts of my drift. Then I saw a little card in a pot of flowers. It was a card to a hotel in the Trestevere area called Hotel Domus Tiberina.
Some other things I came across.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

My flower project expressing Internal and External

This project was an interesting experience because at every memorable moment I would try to remember my feelings, what I smelled, what I saw, and what I tasted. I liked taking mental notes and then writing down my experiences in an artistic way. I felt the flowers on top really represented the show Italians put on for the public with the way they look and the way they act. I put my external experiences on the outside of the box on the flowers and then wove with string into the box with leaves hanging off the end of the leaves in a messy fashion because I thought that my internal is not perfect and all the things I felt were meshed all together—nothing is in perfect order. I thought this project definitely represented my inner and outer self.

I Have A Map

I Have A that helps me. First of all, I don't even know where I am at home. I know a few streets and that’s about it...sad I know. Well I thought Rome would be a great way to burst out of my bubble so to speak and finally start using maps. I have been trying to use these Rome maps but my friends and I still get lost everywhere. I think we are cursed or one of my friends said, “Someone up there does not like us.” I really hope that’s not true. Well I hope that things will be going our way. Tomorrow we I am going to Paris, another interesting adventure with maps and transportation. I guess it would be much harder without a map but we have been taking advantage of the taxi system. When they went on strike for the day it was a tragic day for me and my roommates. I really hope we do better in Paris! Well I am off to pack!

Lost in Rome as Usual

Rome is an amazing city, don't get me wrong. One of the ONLY things I can't stand about it is that I am ALWAYS LOST here. I wish there would be some unbelievable map that can just tell me where to go no matter where I am (I am sure our modern world already has them but are too expensive to even look at). O who am I kidding...I need a driver to pick me up and follow me everywhere I go so then I would not only come on time to everything but be the first one there. Plus I have major issues using a map. Those maps are crazy with bus lines, trams, Metro stops! Ahhh! I am going insane over here just trying to follow it. Basically the ending to the story about being lost is I never get to my destination at the planed time. O and you think a taxi would solve all my problems...NOPE. When I don't need a taxi they are everywhere. When I do need a taxi, they are always taken, or we can't find the taxi stand to catch one, or they don't come to the taxi stand at all...that’s Rome for you...gosh I am tired from all the transportation. Sleep time! : )