30 things to do before I’m 30 – Go inside an Italian Castle

Ciao a tutti, I was lucky during my italian summer to get to visit a Castle, FINALLY. After our disaster in febbraio last year, when we tried to visit Castello Orsini-Odescalchi in Bracciano about 30km out of Roma (although I’m pretty sure it took us around 1 1/2 – 2 hours to get there) only to find that everything in Bracciano happens to be closed on a lunedi (Monday), I was finally going to be able to pretend to be una piccola principessa in a castello! And all we had to do was get a ride to the centre of la citta di Roma! 

The only view of the castle that I got to see in February 2014!

The only view of the castle that I got to see in February 2014!

Castel Sant’AngeloFinally I got to experience a historic Italian Castle! I remember always being fascinated by the idea of Princes and Princesses and Castles and fairytales. When I first imagined going to Italy, I think apart of the fact that all the historic buildings and structures seemed like something out of a fairytale, made the idea of going to Italy so much more appealing! (It probably didn’t help that as a child my mother and step father used to fill my head with ideas that I was dropped off at the doorstep in a basket because I was a long lost Princess haha) Italy, and it’s history and castles were just all so appealing! Not that Italy had exactly had a monarchy, after they managed to abolish the monarchy in 1946 and send Re Umberto II into exile! But Finally I, Anna (without the king) was finally getting to experience stepping foot into a 2000 year old castle!

My first look at this magnificent Castel Sant'Angelo

My first look at this magnificent Castel Sant’Angelo

The Castle of the Holy Angel, as it is called if you translate the name in English, was in fact originally constructed as a mausoleum by the Roman Emperor Hadrian, in 123 the building works started, for what would later turn into a fortress and a castle for the catholic papacy in the 14th century.

Remains of what was clearly a strong fortress!

Remains of what was clearly a strong fortress!

I guess when it came to the Papacy and the Roman Empire and what I imagine would be countless sieges, it definitely acted as a strong hold for the church.

All those little doorways had windows, so they most likely acting as a good place to shoot from!

All those little doorways had windows, so they most likely acting as a good place to shoot from!

Fun Fact! Castel Sant’Angelo even acted as a prison for the Papal State…  I guess when your whole country is the size of an ant hill, there isn’t exactly room for a prison. haha The views from Castel Sant’Angelo were just beautiful, from the views of la citta di roma to the Ponte Sant’Angelo bridge that leads towards the Castel. It literally felt like something out of a fairytale book. The type of stories that start with C’era una volta…. 

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The view at the top of the castel! You can even see the tip of San Pietro in the distance!

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View of the Ponte Sant’Angelo… I was a bit worried when taking this photo, there was a small hole on the ground, I thought I would drop my phone and it would be gone forever! ahhhh

From the artillery rooms, to the crazy italian cartoons from back in the day, there was so much to see in this Castel now turned museum. For €10.50 I definitely felt I got my monies worth!

Strange artwork in one of the museo rooms!

Strange artwork in one of the museo rooms!

There was even a restaurant within the Castel (I can’t remember the restaurant name unfortunately) which made a delicious pizza (but come on, where do you find a bad pizza in Italy). We arrived at Castel Sant’Angelo just before lunch around 11ish, maybe a bit later. And as I’m sure those of you who have been to Italy know and understand that the italian version of “lunch time” is around 2pm. So after a few hours walking around the Castel we fortunately stumbled across this restaurant in one of the upper floors of the building. I remember Matteo being in the il bagno so I remember asking if the table was free in my horrid italian. Pretty sure I even used the wrong word, I can’t remember what incorrect word I used but it wasn’t libero or gratis. oopsie! But the waitress seemed to work out what I was trying to say anyway so that worked out to my favour! And I remember the prices weren’t that bad for a restaurant within a tourist destination!

Enjoying my italian coca cola at pranzo!

Enjoying my italian coca cola at pranzo!

My little friend I made while enjoying my lunch!

My little friend I made while enjoying my lunch! Must of been eyeing up my cibo!

My delicious pizza for the day!

My delicious pizza for the day!

After a beautiful l’estate day in a castel from just out of paradiso, We finally decided to make our way back to the meeting point to get our ride back to la casa.

Enjoying the view from Castel Sant'Angelo

Enjoying the view from Castel Sant’Angelo

I really hope that during this next trip to Italia, even though funds will be incredibly abysmal because we are having to move to nuova zelanda with practically only the bond money from the flat, I really hope we might still get an opportunity to explore a bit more and see some more castles. Even if they’re just around roma… I’m pretty sure there are more castles than just Castel Sant’Angelo in the eternal city!

All roads lead to Rome right? haha

Ciao a tutti!

Until next time!

Anna x

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42 Day Preposition Challenge! Days 1 – 3

Ciao a tutti!

ItalianPrepositionChallege_VespaButton1_White

So I have actually been doing my preposition challenge on each day that I’m supposed too, just haven’t managed to have time to do that and get on here at the same time.

Doing the challenge is really surprising me with what I actually already know which is fico! Because we have been writing sentences then putting them on italki to be corrected by native speakers, and while of course there are some big mistakes as there would be when it’s not your native language, I’m actually surprised with how much I got right!

Ecco è mio esempi for the last three days and with the corrections! 🙂

giorno uno

Sono di Greymouth dalla Nuova Zelanda
Sono una ragazza di venticinque
Sono una sorella di Jonathan
Lui ha dieci anni
il mio fidanzato Matteo è buona la famiglia!

Sono di Greymouth dalla in Nuova Zelanda
Sono una ragazza di venticinque anni
Sono una la sorella di Jonathan
Lui ha dieci anni
il mio fidanzato Matteo ha una buona famiglia

inglese:

I am from Greymouth in New Zealand
I am a girl of 25 years old
I am the sister of Jonathan
He is ten years old
My boyfriend Matteo has a good family

giorno due

mio nonno era un uomo di grande gentilezza
ho rotto il mio telefono a un accesso d’ira
Mi manchi i miei amici di vecchia data in Nuova Zelanda e Australia
Bello Matteo era molto semplice, lui comprare un vestito di pizzo per me quando lui era di Roma la settimana scorsa!
Matteo è più alta di me!
Mi piaci il film Frozen, è un film della Disney circa una principessa detta Anna e una regina detta Elsa, e un uomo di neve Olaf!

 

mio nonno era un uomo di grande gentilezza dall’estrema gentilezza
ho rotto il mio telefono a un
per un eccesso d’ira
Mi
mancano i miei amici di vecchia data in Nuova Zelanda e Australia                           Il bel Matteo è stato molto carino/dolce quando, la settimana scorsa a Roma, ha comprato per me un vestito di pizzo.
Matteo è più alto di me!
Mi
 piacil film Frozen, è un film della Disney circa che parla di una principessa detta chiamata/ che si chiama Anna e di una regina detta chiamata/ che si chiama Elsa, e di un uomo di neve Olaf!

inglese:

My granddad was an extremely gentle man
I broke my phone in a fit of rage
I miss all my old friends in New Zealand and Australia
Beautiful Matteo is so sweet, last week while in rome he bought for me a lace dress
Matteo is much taller than me
I like the film Frozen. It’s a film by Disney, about a princess called Anna and a queen called Elsa and a snowman called Olaf!

giorno tre

Voglio davvero andare alzarsi surf con dei miei amico
Voglio sarebbe andare di puglia in Italia
Dovè le spiagge sei d’ora e il oceano è azzuro e verde
Questa sarebbe fantastica!
Molto meglio di noioso casa di vecchia!

Voglio davvero fare surf con dei miei amici.
Vorrei andare in Puglia in Italia
Dove le spiagge sono d’oro e l’oceano è azzuro.
Questo sarebbe fantastico!
Molto meglio di una noiosa casa vecchia!

inglese:

I really want to go surfing with my friends
I want to go to Puglia in Italy
Where the beaches are golden and the ocean is blue
That would be fantastic
Much better than boring old home!

 

Allora that is me up to day 3, I know I’m meant to be doing day 4 today, but I am too tired today, so I’ll do day 4 and 5 domani. 

I was working late at lavora ieri and was telling the italians that came in all about doing this challenge, they seemed really excited for me, it was really carino! I had a long chat with one parent before she went to pick up her son about my practising italian, she said I just need to speak it as much as I can (although we all know that’s the only way to go) she said that even if Matteo won’t talk to me in italian, I should just always answer him in italian, that way he can correct it, and I will improve. So you know what! I’m going to take on that great advice and do exactly that. At least I do know some clever phrases like come si dici.. how do you say… and cosa significa… what does this mean…

Ciao miei amici!

A dopo!!

Trying my first italian gelato! Photo Credit: Matteo

 

Anna

 

Challenge time!

Ciao a tutti,

So as most of you probably notice, I haven’t been so “in” to my Italian as I was 3 months ago, but you know what?! That is going to change! I have decided to actually pay to do (which is big for Anna – to PAY for something haha) but I’m going to do Cher Hale’s  “42 – Day Conquer Italian Prepositions Challenge” Because all those little in between words really are the death of me, so hey…. why not conquer them! And it means I’ll get to be on here a lot more.

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I think I just lack motivation, but it’s coming into Summer, mio compleanno is only 2 1/2 weeks away, I have more of a desire to exercise (which tends to happen every estate but then in l’inverno I will be like a bear an hibernate) and am just feeling a general happiness, that I haven’t been feeling to much later! So now I am getting back into it! Giving myself a desire to learn again, to conquer this language, that even though I struggle, I really do surprise myself with how much I naturally know every day.

Sometimes I will speak with Matteo in Italian, to ask questions, or answer him, and I just come out with the correct thing to say, BEFORE even thinking about it and haven’t to translate it from English, to Italian, then back to English like I normally do. After I’ve surprised myself, I’m trying to translate what I’ve actually said in Italian and can’t even remember what it is, but I’ve used it right when speaking to him! So that must be a good thing right?!

Now I just need to save my soldi and practise my Italian as often as possible, so if I do infact get to go and stay with Matteo’s la famiglia in augusto like I’m hoping too, (without Matteo) then I need to be able to communicate with them! And we’re also planning a trip for 3 weeks in semptembre! where we are spending 2 weeks close to the sea. Thinking Puglia at the moment, so that could be exciting!!! But nothings set in stone yet! Am open to suggestions if anyone has any hints! But I was thinking southern Italy will be far cheaper than northern Italy!

Well I’m just at lavora now, so probably should get back to work (I’m on my lunch break, so not being cattivo and writing this while the boss isn’t looking) haha!

Ciao bellissimi!

Scrivere Presto!

Anna x

 

All or Nothing – tutto o niente

Ciao a tutti,

I’ve been having a bit of a struggle lately with my italian, really just trying to get back into the habit of incorporating italian practise into every day life. I think the main problem for me, is I only have two speeds, all or nothing. And the problem is, when I give my all, like spend all my time learning italian, I want to use it all around me, at home, at school, when I’m with my one friend I actually have in london, and the problem is, they aren’t into it as much as I am. They aren’t excited about learning this bella lingua as I am. Why can’t everyone in the world just want to learn italian like me? Or really, just the people that are around me everyday.

At the moment, I think I’ve been filling my italian void with other things, I am quite a self professed nerd, and Game of Thrones addict. (maybe I should watch GoT with italian subtitles to help out my language learning) and have recently been spending a vast amount of money of something called Pop Vinyls. It’s basically a cheap collectable that looks something like this:

Hodor?!

Hodor?!

 

This is where all my current funds have been going too, although it got rather bad and Matteo had to sit me down and tell me I needed to stop, so now I can only spend half the money I have made on ebay selling extras I acquired. haha. But now that I’ve stopped being so addicted to collecting these little toys I’m trying to get back into this thing called italian!

Don’t get me wrong, I haven’t been doing absolutely no italian, when I’m out in public with Matteo I try to speak italian to him, so it’s like a secret language, and I have gotten myself known to the parents at school who are italian. (I lavoro as an admin assistant at a primary school and Children’s Centre) I’m pretty sure a few of them think that I can speak fluently, and I just try to wing it when they actually talk to me in fast italian, and I pretend I know what they’re saying. But still, to me I don’t feel like I’m getting very far.

In August I have two weeks off school during the summer holidays, so after chatting with Matteo who is currently already in Italy for a week (not fair!) I can go there without Matteo for a whole week to try to get a grips with this language. His family are all on board with me coming over to spend time with them for a week, that way I will have to speak the language, because I will have no Matteo there to be my english crutch. I am thinking I might do an intensive italian course while in roma, but mamma said I didn’t have to do it, that she was happy to show me round and spend time with me the whole time. But I guess that depends how much I can improve in the next 3 months. Because if I’m making no vast improvements, I will be spending a lot of time just using random words that probably won’t make much sense to get my point across. But I cannot wait! Because then I’ll come back to work for a week, and we will then be going back to Italy for 3 weeks in september! so I’m really hoping it will then make a difference for me with my language abilities!

Well I better get to doing some fast studying hey?!

picgifs-ciao-301451

 

Ciao!

Anna

two new saints today!

Ciao a tutti,

Allora, oggi marks a big step in any catholic’s life, when both Pope John XXIII (Papa Giovanni XXII) e Pope John Paul II (Papa Giovanni Paulo II) became saints just hours ago!

It’s really quite a big deal! And these two amazing popes, played such a big part in moving the catholic church forward.

When I look at the life of Papa Giovanni XXIII, whom everybody just thought was going to be a caretaker pope, he surprised all, by calling the historic second vatican council. He is affectionately known by italians as il Papa buono or the good pope!

For me, only the past 17 months or so is where I have started to find quite an affection for il Papa buono, as he was far before my time, it was the second time I was in Italy in January 2013, when I was staying with Matteo’s family, and I found out that is great nonno  actually worked for Papa Giovanni XXIII, now that is amazing, as soon as Nonna found out I was a catholic, she showed me straight away the framed photo of her papa with Papa Giovanni, and then she went on to give me a pair of rosary beads that were from Papa Giovanni XXIII, now that just meant to much to me, considering she didn’t really know me that well, but it just meant the world to me, so that gave me a real desire to learn more about this il Papa buono! 

 

Credit: Facebook page - Catholic gags

credit: Facebook page - catholic gags

 

Then there is the beautiful John Paul II…

I went to a high school named after him, so we learnt a lot about him, he’s the one pope, other than the recent two, that was actually around in my life time… for any 25 year old, we have only seen 3 popes, John Paul II, Benedict XXVI and Francis, but none have been quite like John Paul II (I mean I love Francis, and I think very fondly of him, and he will probably create a legacy just like John Paul II, although for now, it’s JPII for the win) I mean, Papa Giovanni Paulo II was one of the most influential leaders of the 20th century, he was Pope for 26 anni! Now that is a very long time to serve as Pope! And he was the first non-italian pope since the 1500s! He visited 129 countries during his reign as pontificate, beatified 1340 people and canonised 483 saints, more than the combined tally of his predecessors over the past 5 centuries. And he really called for religious unity, not just christian unity, but unity between all faiths. And he must of been pretty special because Pope Bene waived the 5 year traditional waiting period that existed before Pope John Paul II was beatified!

He was just such a beautiful beautiful man! As they called him shortly after his death Pope John Paul II the great!

 

 

It is unbecoming of a cardinal to ski badly - Pope John Paul II

It is unbecoming of a cardinal to ski badly – Pope John Paul II

It is unbecoming of a cardinal to ski badly - Pope John Paul II

It is unbecoming of a cardinal to ski badly – Pope John Paul II

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I wish I got to be one of the 800,000 people gathered at San Piedro Piazza today, unfortunately I haven’t been very well this weekend! I keep getting that horrid la febbre di primavera! Finally just starting to feel better today, had to go home early from work on friday, and I have never had a sick day off in the whole year I have worked there! Arrrrh! 😦

Well looked like everyone in roma had an amazing experience of the canonisation of two amazing men!

Ciao a tutti! 

A dopo!

xx

Anna

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Credit: Catholic Memes

Credit: Catholic Memes

 

Buona Pasqua miei amici!!!

Ciao a tutti,

As we are coming into Pasqua, it is so nice to see the warmer weather and tempo, it is my secondo anno on this side of the world, and as Nuova Zealanda is coming into autumn, we are now thriving in Spring.

Unfortunately I did catch that dreading febbre di primavera or spring fever, and not the good kind! The one rare occurrence the other half had a Sunday off, I was unfortunately stuck to the bed. But luckily I had an amazing carer, who didn’t actually believe I was ill until I took my temperature! (I think I’ve now past on my febbre di primavera to him though… oops)

It’s weird for me to think back on my past Easters this year, it’s hard when you’re so far away from everything you know, as well as not being around family. I think maybe next year I might have to go to Italy to celebrate it over there, at least I’ll be surrounded by the comfort of my Italian family that I found through being with Matteo, but still, I at least have Saturday with him, on another rare occurrence that he isn’t working!

In New Zealand, basically everywhere would be closed tomorrow, being that it’s good Friday, no public transport would be running, and you can’t buy any alcohol. It’s hard for me to imagine that there are still shops going to be open tomorrow!

This Easter will definitely be a different one! Last year I was singing in an Easter play with a few people from a church I was attending, unfortunately it took me over a hour to get there, so while I loved the sense of community and friendship I had built there, it was just to hard to travel that far, unfortunately I don’t feel the same sense of community at the church that is only a 10minute walk away. I remember I asked the priest if they had any choirs, and while they did, he just seemed really grumpy that I didn’t know who he was telling me to go at see. So it sort of put me off, which is a shame. But I guess we can go to the vigil on Saturday night, it’s much better to go with someone rather than alone right?

Although it would definitely be a dream of mine to spend Easter at the Vatican! Maybe one day hey? haha

It will definitely be a different Easter than usual, but I will make the most of it! And even have roast chicken! At least I can start eating takeaways again, since we both gave it up for Lent! But really can’t say I’m missing it at all!

Allora, Buono giornata e buona pasqua!!!!

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Ciao

Anna x

not trying actually works….

Ciao a tutti,

Mi scusi I have been a bit of a no show these past couple of weeks. I have been taking a break of actually trying to learn italian, and I was thinking about it this afternoon as I was walking to il stazione di treni and I came to the conclusion, I actually use italian in every day life. More than I could imagine.

From the little ciao bellissime at lavoro to the beautiful donne that are either madre di bambini or coworkers, to randomly getting asked to say something in italian to my colleagues, where I said lo vuoi un sapere un segreto (probably spelt ridiculously wrong, but I’m sure Matteo will get me to correct it later) only cos I actually knew how to say “do you want to know a secret” and they thought it was amazing, even though when they heard it through their ears, they actually had no idea what I was saying, they just went on to say “everything sounds better in italian”

To the emails I send to Matteo while sitting at the computer, which I ALWAYS write the first email in italian, even though it’s probably only like 5 or 6 lines wrong, if I ever accidentally sent it to someone else, it would be a secret language they wouldn’t understand.

It is amazing, that even though I haven’t actually studied recently, I am amazed at how much italian is already apart of my everyday life. And you know what…. that is pretty exciting!

I mean, you get down when you feel like you’re not getting anywhere with your studies, when you feel like you’ve hit a wall, but if I think back a year ago, even 6 months ago, my brain definitely wasn’t bilingual… but now, you know, it kinda is. Even if I’ve got a long way to go, my brain thinks in two different languages now….

When I see the days of the week written somewhere, I automatically translate them in my head into italian, then back to english, or now when I sing that beautiful Frozen song All’alba sorgero, the italian version of let it go, when I sing it in my head, I’m singing it IN italian! (which I may even film myself and put it on here, when I build up the courage/have the space to project my voice)

It is so encouraging, that after a couple of weeks of taking a break, I came to the conclusion, that it doesn’t matter anymore, I can still understand, think and speak italian, even if it’s not much, it’s not going to disappear anytime soon, it is apart of me now, and I’m not going to let go one bit!

A dopo!

Buona notte xx

Anna

random crow like bird.

random crow like bird.