The last chapter of my adventures❤️🇮🇹 – Zoya in Florence

May 10

Today I was in a hurry because I had to memorize a presentation I was doing in my costume history class at 12pm, I realized I needed to eat so I ran over to Gourmet Pizza and i ordered a pizza which took longer than they said so i waited and had to run to class with a pizza box in my hand, shoving the pizza into me throat in order to eat and prepare it in time.

I came to class and I was proud of myself for speaking well in my presentation because sometimes I get nervous before and mess up what I say. The only thing that didn’t help was that my teacher yelled in the middle of my sentences that I had to watch the time, when I had timed mine at the correct length and was the one of the first to leave. She only did it to me and a few others, it was very frustrating trying to talk, remembering all the important dates and facts while being interrupted. Anyway, after my presentation, I had lunch with my friend Parker at the restaurant on my street corner. I also ordered white wine because the only thing I had to finish was my oil painting projects so I allowed myself a glass of wine.

Later that night I cooked with my friend and then worked on my paintings until 3/4 in the morning. I was only able to finish one completely, it was my painting of the Sicilian landscape. I always underestimate the amount of detail and time needed in a painting. I had another whole painting to finish which was called a “master copy” we were supposed to take a small part of a painting we found at Uffizi Gallery Museum and recreate it. I picked a section of this painting that was extremely difficult and couldn’t finish it because it was already 4am and I was so tired I passed out with paint all over me.

May 11

Today I had to wake up at 8am to go to my 9am oil painting class. I have never been so exhausted in my life going to class before. Today we were doing class reviews, which means we go around in a circle and each student explains their work, the difficulties they encountered, what they found easy and what worked better, an analysis of the techniques he used, etc. After explaining each student would critique their work and then the teacher would also say a few words. This process was so long and boring and I fell asleep about 4 times falling completely out of my chair and catching myself. It was so bad that I had never been so exhausted in a class in my life. I haven’t had a full night’s sleep in over a month and it all hit me during finals week. After the course I had to stay for a few more hours, remember this course lasts 6 hours…. I had to finish my main copy painting which turned out so bad. I’m such a perfectionist, this was so below my standards, if I had had more time it would have been so much better, but I painted so fast to leave class and sleep. Literally embarrassed by the end result, but I’ll try to finish it when I get home because it will bother me.

After class, I took a well-deserved nap and made pasta. Later that night I went to a cafe to study for my Italian degree and wrote down the recipe for my cooking degree the next day. Then I went to bed after a long day.

May 12

This morning I had breakfast at Cafe Artinigale before I had to go to my cooking class which was quite intense we all picked a dish to cook and we had to present it to the teacher and he tasted it and gave us a grade based on the presentation of the dish and the quality taste and flavor. Me and my friend Hailey decided to make these mini fried calzones. We were the only ones who hadn’t decided to make pasta like everyone else, which was the simplistic dish to do. We made the dough and reheated it in the oven, made the filling with endives, anchovies and olives and made the red sauce. We were doing so well until we made the mistake of adding all the toppings together when we were supposed to separate the sauce from the endive topping. We screwed up badly. Once we fried them it was too late, we decorated the plate and handed it to the chef and sous chef. They tasted it and they said it didn’t taste good. They said the flavors don’t go together and we were supposed to do the toppings separately. We also didn’t know that we had to do a full presentation of our “creations” taking into account the history of the dish and the health of the ingredients. We didn’t do that so I had to quickly do a presentation while sitting in class on my phone, this went surprisingly well considering the time and doing everything on my phone in under 10 minutes. So it was at least good that I made that last minute, otherwise that rating could have been extremely poor. After class, I returned to my apartment to finalize my studies for my Italian diploma within the next hour. After my final, which I think went pretty well, I was completely done with everything and the weight was completely taken off me. I was so stressed about the deadlines that I was exhausted.

Later that night we all went to dinner at our favorite place Trattoria Da Guido because it was Mary’s last night and it was the restaurant we went to on the first night of our trip abroad and our favorite that we loved. Later that night we drank wine and hung out.

May 13

Today was my last day in Florence with all my friends, it was so sad. In the morning I started frantically packing all my shit into bags in a panic that nothing was right because I had done some shopping while I was in Florence. After trying everything, I took a shower and got ready to meet my two friends for lunch at San Lorenzo. I ordered pasta carbonara and we had a cheese platter appetizer which was delicious and I drank lots of white wine. After lunch, I had to part with them because my mother had just arrived and I wanted to find her.

I met my mom, which was very moving because we hadn’t seen each other in months. First she traveled to Italy for the week, then the rest of my family came. When she arrived, I gave her a little tour of all my usual routes, my art class because I had to pack up all my supplies. She helped me send some of my stuff home. Afterwards we walked in the leather markets, and in the streets. We ended up having dinner in the Piazza della Republica, with a breathtaking view of the carousel. It started to get dark and my mother was tired because the jet lag was hitting her. I decided to spend my last night in my apartment so we separated.

Two of my friends were still in Italy so we met up at one of our favorite chill out bars called Moyo and grabbed cocktails and reminisced about the time we had. It was a sad walk home to think it was all coming to an end. I went back to my apartment for the very last time and fell asleep.

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