Yet another attempt at travel writing…
I find that visiting Florence is as close to time travel as I will ever experience in this lifetime. However, there is a paradox of time periods overlapping at once. I do not only envision a past when I gaze out at the city through my bedroom window, but a present and a future as well. How do you look at Michelangelo’s David, setting the example for a perfect male figure in 1504, and say he is not still the textbook image of male physique? I remember the hype surrounding my visit to see the David. “You must see him! You’ll cry when you see him!” This was all I’d been hearing since I announced my acceptance to Lorenzo de Medici a semester and a half ago. It’s true that my expectations were high. Especially since sculpture is by far my favorite medium and I do have quite a taste for tall naked men. Continue reading
Bad days exist, with cause or without. Today I felt a gloomy little cloud above my head. He was as gray as the cobblestones beneath my sandals. I am walking in over seventy-degree weather in Florence, Italy. People are out, laughing and chatting and eating wonderful food outside accompanied by a glass of wine. Why aren’t I smiling? Continue reading
A Crack at Travel Writing as a Genre:
If there was one piece of advice I gave myself before landing in Florence, the city where classical learning blossomed after a millennium of darkness… it was to avoid being a tourist. I came here to feel, to explore, and to learn. The aspirations for my journey were clear-cut, leave the selfie stick in New York and bring an open mind to Europe. Continue reading
Stereotyping is human nature. As an education major I am influentially trained to treat all students the same, and all teachers are molded into politically correct individuals. But all the education in the world cannot stop the involuntary and compulsive need to judge, to stereotype, and to treat others like dirt for no reason.
I am not only talking about race. I want to focus on something more personal than the way a person looks, acts, or dresses. There is an even greater, more dangerous stereotype that does not come from strangers. It comes from your friends, your family, and all those who are close to you.
When you become friendly with another person the dynamic you share changes. It’s as if the sun has set on that awkward ‘getting to know each other’ phase and now the general way you feel most comfortable presenting yourself to that human being is brought forth. Although I never try to be “fake,” I admit that I act differently around dissimilar groups of friends. It is not something I consciously control, but I do find myself playing the class clown as well as the advice giver, depending on what others expect of me.
Encircling the glass with my tongue
I inhale the bitter brilliance
Of blood stained sour grapes
In my throat.
Frozen hearts could thaw
By your sweltering embrace.
The crisp winter breeze
Never kissed your finger tips.
And the whitest snow
Broiling beneath your boots.
I never knew a Christmas
So devoid of the bitter
Cold I once suffered