The time I have spent here in Urbino has been life changing. Who can say they have been kidnapped by their interviewee, played futbol with Italians, and danced with the locals? Not many I’m sure.
Throughout my blogging, I noticed some patterns that seemed to pop out. The first pattern was I tried different things and immersed myself in different activities. I was asked to play futbol, a sport I know I can’t play, but tried anyway and did ok at it. The other pattern was kind of a forced one; but when I was with Nancy, her interview subject “kidnapped” us, in a good way. I ate hand-made pasta and other authentic Italian food. Had I not gone with Nancy, I would have missed out on this unique opportunity.
The second pattern I noticed was that all my experiences focused on culture. I experienced new sport, dance, food, art, and design. Playing the sport, dancing with locals, experiencing the area’s cuisine, witnessing classic art, and dealing with design was all part of culture. Had I had not gone outside of my comfort zone, tagged along on a interview, or gone on a trip, these things would have been missing from my life.
Abram and Zweig talk about the necessity to “recognize the projections that color our opinions of other.” I immediately think of me playing futbol. I was there watching these serious players practice and they looked fierce. I was very intimidated. When I was playing the first time, I thought this one guy would not want me to play because he yelled a lot. The second time I went in, I scored and he was the first person to congratulate me. When I saw him other places in Urbino, he would stop and try to talk to me and even hug me. I had automatically perceived the situation to be one way, when in fact because I broke my comfort zone, I made a friend.
“Voicing Identities” talked about in one section “the difficult letters ‘L’ and ‘R’.” This person had trouble saying some words but by reading lips and sounding it out, they final got it. This made me think of when we were at the 4th of July party and “Billie Jean” played. I was singing along and an Italian woman was dancing with us. We read each other’s lips and immediately had that connection. Even with other songs, we read each other’s lips and understood each other.
I feel that this study abroad program has not only developed my multimedia skills, but also has helped me to understand culture in different ways. These experience that I have and share with other people are something I will never forget. When I have grandchildren, I will be able to tell them about being kidnapped by my interview subject and playing futbol with Italians and scoring a goal. I feel like I am apart of this culture here in Urbino and I know how to evaluate my future experiences in working the hyphen.