Today, strolling through Verona on this beautiful day, I learned that it is really a city filled with deep history. I did not realize that there was so much history left in this city from the time of the Romans. Old architecture really holds the true beauty of a city and I am glad that it can no longer be destroyed. The Arena was interesting to see in person after learning so much about it in my English classes growing up and seeing pictures of plays that went on there and places like it. Also since Shakespeare is so well known in America it really gives you a good picture of what he was referring to when he wrote the plays and just seeing the city helps you imagine them. Overall, this city is very well known in America because you learn a lot about it in high school so getting to see it for real was a great experience.
This city and Milan were very different, but similar at the same time. Verona was very quiet and peaceful compared to Milan, it seems to be a less busy city all around. Even just comparing the amount of cars driving around, Milan seems to be busier. When a city is busy all the time like Milan, it seems rushed compared to a city like Verona, which seems more relaxed and slow. Don’t get me wrong, both are great spots for tourists, Milan with The Duomo and Verona with The Arena and the balcony from Romeo and Giulietta, but Milan just seems to have a lot more people. With these great attractions, you would think that Verona would have many more tourists, but our tour guide explained that they mostly get tourists that are just stopping on their way through, mostly from Germany and other foreign countries on their way to the more tourist popular area such as Florence and Venice. Another thing I noticed was that Verona has much more of the original architecture than Milan, because Milan is considered a younger city as far as the architecture goes. Also, Milan tends to display its historical treasures while in Verona there are some hidden, even down in the middle of a department store. However, both cities seemed to be centered around one big object, in Milan, it is the Duomo, while in Verona it is the Arena. One of the main similarities I noticed was the types of shops that both cities had, which included Louis Vittoun, Prada and other high end brands. Both cities seem to be very good to shop in, of course if that is in your price range.
Getting to experience cities that are so different is great for me because as I have mentioned before in this blog, I have never traveled outside of the country, so I started this trip with no international experience at all. I have also never really traveled with a big group like this especially for such a long period of time and so far away from home. I would say I’m adjusting well to all these new experiences and adventures and I am truly having the time of my life! I have traveled with a few close friends for vacations and longer trips, once even the whole way to California, but this is a different type of experience. I chose to come to Italy because I have always loved how beautiful it looks in pictures and the beauty of the language so I wanted to experience it in real life, and it has not disappointed so far. Also, at home Italian food is my favorite kind of food, although it is different here, it is different in a good way, meaning it is much better. Another reason I had for wanting to come here was because my sisters have both visited and fell in love with it. After hearing about their great experiences here, I knew it was something I had to do. Also, I believe it will help me in my career, after doing these site visits and learning how companies operate here, it will help me if I ever choose to go into international business. Before being selected for this program, I had no real knowledge of Italian culture and professional background, of course I knew the stereotypical things about Italy, such as they eat a lot of carbs and have very good leather products, but other than the generic things, I did not know much. Now I have found a great deal of things that I have really found interesting and had no idea about before. After this trip I will have true knowledge of real Italian culture.