Even though we are not traveling to far-reaching destinations in Italy during the middle of the week, it is no less exciting and entertaining. The ideal location of Tuscania lends itself to many short excursions. For example, after dinner on Monday evening we decided that we wanted to try a new gelateria. One of the local waiters, who has become our friend, drove us to the beach at Montalto and we walked around the pier until we found the best gelateria. Not only did I order my usual pistachio, but I also tried the cinnamon, tiramisu, and nocciola. It was divine (if not a little decadent)!
On Tuesday we walked into our Italian class and our teacher asked us if we wanted to study at Lake Bolsena. We were not ones to turn down that inviting offer, so we hopped in his car and learned about the irregular verb conjugations while sitting at a table on the sands of the lake as the waves crashed into shore at Capodimonte. It was the most idyllic classroom setting that I have ever experienced.
Tuesday night a group of 11 students and I had a reservation at a nearby Agriturismo, which is a working farm that invites tourists to to learn about their fresh, local, and organic products. If by "learning" you mean eating... then we got an A+ for sure. We had the Agriturismo dining room to ourselves, and they proceeded to bring us about nine different courses of food. The antipasti included stuffed eggplants, zucchini, tomatoes, cheeses, and breads with their olive oil. Then they brought out two different courses of pasta, our favorite being the pesto. We did not want to leave that eating experience. It was one of my most memorable while here in Tuscania.
On Wednesday we took a little field trip with my Etruscan and Roman Art History class to the nearby archaeology dig site where they are excavating Etruscan tombs from the 5th century. I felt like Indiana Jones as we climbed down into the tombs and shoveled out dirt in order to dig deeper into the chambers. They even graded us on our digging capabilities. It was a blow to my ego when the resident shovel-er gave me a 2 on a scale of 1 to 10. Come on!
We nearly have a full moon here in Tuscania, so at night Sara and I like to walk around and sit in the park as we marvel at the "man on the moon." It does not get any better than that.
This afternoon we are going to Rome for a class field trip, and tomorrow we leave for Cinque Terre. So much to do, and so little time left...