How am I ever going to leave? Maybe I just won't. The last two Saturdays I've gone on some wonderful bike rides. Last weekend my friend Adriana and I rode through back country roads from Sinalunga to Buonconvento, and today I took a ride for myself from Asciano to Buonconvento. Both were fairly long rides with a lot of uphill, but they were away from the madness of touristy cities and we got to enjoy the fresh air and Tuscan countryside. Riding out there is truly great: big hills, surrounded by bigger mountains, bright green fields, olive groves, villas made of stone from the surrounding countryside, vineyards of course, small towns, and just Italians living and working. They all look at us like we're crazy, I think mainly because we're girls and it's fairly unusual for Italian women to be active at all.
Here's some sheep I passed today. This dog proceeded to chase me away shortly after I took the picture.
My other favorite part of today was when I was a little confused in Asciano. I took the train there and had drawn myself a little map of how to get out of the town. Of course, I went the wrong way, realized it soon enough and asked for help from a woman who was carrying her groceries down the road. First of all, I was so proud that I asked in Italian and that I understood her response, and I also understood that she wasn't exactly sure. She motioned for me to wait then walked a little further and proceeded to call out all of her neighbors and ask them where Via Gramsci was. It was so wonderful and Italian of them all. They helped and I proceeded on my way. Days like today make me love Italians more than anything.
Besides that there has been class as usual, but most importantly it is finally spring! When the sun is out it's warm enough to go sit in the Piazza del Campo, take off your jacket, and enjoy the sun. I usually go with the intention of reading and then not doing that at all. It's much more fun to talk with my friends, eat gelato, and just watch people. Especially the young Italian boys who often approach groups of girls their age after loitering near them for twenty minutes. It's very cute to watch. And my cooking is improving, which is always good. Oh, I have a sweet life!