It has been a bittersweet week. My parents have arrived in Rome, the semester has ended, and the United Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union. As I have shown my parents the many areas of Rome I have come to love, it has been strange to think just six weeks ago these places were new to me. While it has been incredible to share these experiences with my parents, it was strange to think these were last times I would see these places during my study abroad program.
I had to finish the last night of the semester with a large Italian meal. I took my family to what has been my favorite restaurant in Rome, Hosteria del Moro de Tony, or Tony’s as we have come to refer it. It is located in the section of Rome called Trastevere, known for its restaurants. As I mentioned earlier in my blog, for just 20 euros a person this restaurant serves four incredible courses. The table was overflowing with antipastas like bruschetta and calamari, pastas, chicken parmesan, and tiramisu. Our only complaint was that our stomachs filled up far too fast.
In traditional Italian style, we took our time with our meal, enjoying the food and company. Eventually we left to walk the streets of Trastevere. Even on a Thursday night, the streets were crowded with people going to and from dinner or exploring the shops. Trastevere is located on the Tiber River and when our walk took us across a bridge we noticed a long row of tents along the river beneath us.
This was not here at the beginning of my trip. I was amazed to discover how extensive this seasonal market was. On and on down the river bank were restaurants, bars, stores, and even live music. The warm Rome night provided the perfect atmosphere to stroll along and stop anywhere we found interesting. Unfortunately, all nights must come to an end and we took a taxi back for my last night in the Residence.
The next morning I awoke to find the UK voted to leave the EU. After spending six weeks studying this, I became immersed in the news. I was impressed with myself how much of the jargon I now knew from my class. Terms like Article 7 or references to people like Jean-Claude Junker now made perfect sense to me. I was disappointed in the uncertainty the vote cast upon the EU. As my professor, Dr. Pollack, put it, it was a surreal morning for EU scholars. However, I am excited to see how everything will unfold.
It was also a morning of many goodbyes. I said goodbye to the room that had become my home away from home and my roommates and friends I had made on this trip. I spent one last day in Rome with my parents. However, I am not saying goodbye to Rome. Instead, until next time because there will definitely be a next time.