Anticipation: Italy

I’m sitting on an Al Italia flight waiting to be deposited in the lovely city of Verona, just in time for Valentine’s Day. Verona does Valentine’s the way Italy does food: with a well-deserved air of superiority. And though I’m accompanied by 24 ninth graders, nothing is going to rain on my parade of prosciutto and Prosecco, mozzarella and gelato, and all the salami and Chianti my belly can bear.

Italy is a place where I feel it’s acceptable to gesticulate emphatically while speaking like Al Pacino in The Godfather and shoveling tagliatelle into my mouth.

This year’s school trip is much the same as last year, but with the exciting addition of Venice, a place I never have been but have been itching to go, partly because it is sinking. Venice will look dazzling, I imagine, with all of its labyrinthine canals and dozing gondolas. But it will look especially bright under the spell of Carnevale, with colorful confetti dappling the cobblestones and masked revelers taking to the streets. David, my wild and rugged Aussie colleague/trip leader, has booked us a sunset gondola ride on our first afternoon and a mask-making workshop on the following morning.

I hope this doesn’t involve hot glue guns or feathers, because mine will probably look like a mangled peacock. Painting I can do.

About to take off!

[My next entries are a series of stories coming from the two weeks I’ve spent jetsetting. In all, I’ve spent a total of 8 days in February in Egypt. It’s been a whirlwind, and my home has been a suitcase.]

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