The GoGlobal Blog

Ciao For Now

Ciao For Now

I’ve been trying to rack my brain with what to write about for this, what is my last blog post for you lovely readers. The fact that this semester has ended is still beyond me and I think I’m still trying to process everything that’s happened since August. Quotes seem to be a go-to of mine. The right one can say exactly what you want it to, and in my case, they usually say it a lot more eloquently. Recently, I came across this one while on the interwebs. I found it in Italian, but apparently it’s some old Indian proverb. I’ve tried to find it in other places, but alas, nothing yet. Regardless, it’s

Viaggiando alla scoperta dei paesi troverai il continente in te stesso

With my best translating skills on hand, I interpret it as: traveling to discover different countries, you find a continent within yourself (like I said, it’s the same idea I want to express about this semester- except said profoundly). With that being said, although it is a cliche, cliches stem from some kind of truth in my eyes, and I feel like while traveling and being abroad,  I’ve discovered new aspects of myself.


The first big change in my life is actually my career path and I have nothing but my placement at Kino Produzioni to thank for that. As a child of immigrant parents and now a single, self-employed single parent, I’ve always felt the pressure to do something that was considered a real job once I graduated from college. I knew from the start that I wasn’t going to become any kind of doctor, dentist or lawyer. I don’t have the patience for it, nor the interest and my hats off to people who do want to study and do that work. And my mom’s never pushed me towards those either, but I’ve always felt pressured to really make something of myself in order to be able to support her after all that she’s sacrificed for me. I never knew how to include my passion of the arts, particularly cinema, photography and music, into my future career- whatever that ended up being. Working at Kino this semester has been a blessing and the fact that I get to continue next semester is very exciting. It’s opened my eyes to a lot of things I can potentially do in the future and I’m actually currently in the midst of applying to hopefully intern at the Chicago International Film Festival once I come back to the States! In general, my internship class has been super supportive and it’s been an absolute honor to work alongside all of these motivated and talented new friends. 

The Italian Interns.

Another big change is my spirituality. No, I’m not any more religious than I was in the past. That I can tell you for sure. I’m still struggling to figure out just exactly what my relationship with whatever I really believe in is. However, being a part of a CLC while here in Rome has been enlightening. It’s  not only offered me a space to talk about things that my friends and I normally don’t, but a place to reflect upon that part of me that I’ve neglected for quite some time. Reflection in a lot of aspects of my life has become central to my stay in Rome. I often enjoyed my solo bus rides to and from my internship or my passegiatas around the neighborhood to the Zodiac, seeing it as a time to myself and a time to think. I find myself writing a lot more about my thoughts, thinking a lot of my relationships with the people around me and the people back home, about short and long-term goals that I set for myself. It’s been really healthy for me.


Lastly, I’m currently stuck in a bittersweet limbo. On the one hand, I have three of my closest friends coming to the JFRC in January for the spring. This is something I have been *low-key* waiting for all semester long. They’ve spoiled me in in the realm of friendships by being amazing people that I can count on for anything– so needless to say, I’ve missed them to pieces. I cannot wait for the honor of sharing my Rome with them and helping discover what the eternal city means to them.

Truthfully, before I came to Rome in August, a significant part of me was filled with anxiety. Now, an important thing to tell you all about myself is that I perceive myself to be a pretty quiet and shy person when I first meet people, but I’m a huge people person. I love having conversations with others, I love being around friends. That’s not to say I cannot handle being on my own or being independent, but growing up as an only child with no cousins my age– living at Loyola where I room with my best friends and have everyone around me was a welcoming change for me. Coming to Rome, a wave of deja vu was hitting me, because was as if freshman year of college was repeating itself. No one I knew well was coming abroad to the Rome center- but that ended up being a blessing in disguise, even if I didn’t initially anticipate Rome becoming home. The fact that I was dreading the goodbyes that I had to make to people that I’ve known for less than four months is a testament to that. I really didn’t want to say goodbye to these friends that have opened their hearts to me just as much as I didn’t want to say goodbye to my friends back in Chicago in August. 
IMG_1471IMG_1508IMG_1492People who you talk to about studying abroad always tell you all the time how difficult it might be to adjust to a new place– but they forget to mention how hard it is to leave, even for those like me who still have another semester to go. I mean, I’m not really leaving- but part of my Rome is. Witnessing everyone’s “lasts,”; last trips to the city center, last view of the Pantheon, last night out in Trastevere, last gelato– it was emotional. They never really talk about just how bittersweet the whole feeling is and how much you’re going to miss everyone, because you realize that there will never be a time like this, where we’re all together in this way, in this city. The night the group flight was leaving is a testament to that, as I have never seen that many people with so many tears in their eyes at 3am in the morning.

There’s a strong sense of camaraderie (not unlike the Fellowship of the Ring for you fellow LOTR nerds) with people that you experience the new and unknown with, and although I’m ecstatic that I get one more semester in the eternal city, it will be immensely different without the new friends I’ve been blessed to meet this semester. Have safe flights home and a wonderful holiday season, everyone! Please know that you will always be a a part of “my Rome” and that it will not be the same without you. Grazie a tutti!


If you are ever presented with the opportunity to study abroad- do it. Don’t hesitate. It’s a chaotic and confusing, but also beautiful-arguably like Rome. You’ll have an even bigger love-hate relationship with the ATAC public transportation system here than you do back at home (especially if you’re accustomed to the lovely CTA like I am back in Chicago). You might find yourself sick of pasta- I haven’t personally reached this point, but I think it’s because in my family home, pasta was never a big thing. You might get annoyed by how there’s no wifi in your room and question why nothing seems to be on any kind of schedule.

However, you’ll also feel a sense of satisfaction every time you can make yourself understood to someone who doesn’t speak the same language as you. You’ll feel a little proud at the fact that you can plan a ten day trip across three different countries for a little less than 400 euro- and you should be! The sense of togetherness you feel with the people you share ungodly early morning flights and overnight train rides with because although you all share the struggle- the views, the experiences that you live through in your destination is all worth it.

Plus, there’s an endless array of gelato if you happen to study abroad in Italy. And that is arguably the biggest selling point if you ask me.


I don’t think that this is supposed to be the best time of my entire life, there’s still so much of life to live- but this experience is definitely up there. Studying abroad challenged me to not only discover the world, but discover myself. And with that, I leave you with my video project for my Italian class.

Go Global, it has been a blast. If anyone has any questions about studying abroad feel free to contact me and if you want to keep up with me during my second semester in Europe, look up , which will hopefully be updated more than it is now (oops- but hey, that just means I’m out and about doing other things, no?)

Ciao for now 🙂

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