Ciao from London

Hi there, I’m Tori and welcome to my blog! Right now, I’m at home in London, England, enjoying time with my family, friends and cats before I head off to Orvieto next week! A little bit about me: I was born in New York, to a South African dad and a British mum and, living in London, I have friends from all around and have met people from lots of different cultures.

Buckingham Palace earlier this week to celebrate achieving my Duke of Edinburgh Award

I began my journey with Italian last year as a freshman, when I decided to learn a new language rather than continuing with French or Spanish (both of which I have over 5 years experience of learning) and what a fun journey it’s been! I’ve moved from Beginning Italian 1, Fall 2021, to Modern Literature and Culture, this past semester. Last summer, I spent five weeks in Sorrento, studying abroad at the Sant’Anna Institute, which gave me an incredible opportunity to speak Italian everyday: going to the supermarket, exploring churches, eating out, and watching an opera in an arena. This summer, I’m hoping to take this even further by adding ‘speaking to co-workers’ to my list of opportunities for Italian development, whilst learning about a new, different region and its culture.

Thanks to my previous time in Italy, I feel generally comfortable with the idea of exploring Italy and navigating interactions with the locals. However, seeing as I will be working there instead of taking classes, I won’t have the security net of having the other college students there with me. With this in mind, I wanted to set myself goals to develop my intercultural competency to accomodate this new challenge whilst building upon the progress I made last summer. I hope to build more significant connections by pushing past any discomfort I might feel about asking questions about new cultural phenomena, as well as not being afraid to ask about any words I don’t know in conversation.

I am very excited about the research I’ll be doing whilst I’m there: working in a lab on research into how plants are affected by climate change. Before this summer, I have been in various science labs, but have never had to do science in Italian. This is another new challenge, but another one that I’m looking forward to take on as it will really help develop my vocabulary as well as give me an opportunity to speak Italian in a more formal environment than I have before. This will be great practice for later in life when I hope to work on an international scale, so will need to be able to speak Italian more formally.

With all these new experiences ahead of me, all that’s left is to pack and head to the airport!