Three Weeks, Endless Memories: My CET Siena Adventures

Written by Eliza Ward (Meredith College), Student Correspondent for CET Siena, Summer 2024

The saying, “Time flies when you’re having fun,” is true, especially when you are studying abroad. I can’t wrap my mind around the fact that three weeks have gone by very quickly. In those three weeks, I have created many memories with the CET group in Siena and on my own, and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. While I can’t place all of the trips and excursions that I have experienced, here are some of my highlights.

Birthday Shenanigans: Meeting the Animals of Italy

Just from looking at the title of this paragraph, I celebrated my 20th birthday here in Siena. While it was strange to be far away from home on this special day, my group and I had the pleasure of going to Fattoria Pernici to meet and pet the wonderful farm animals of Italy.

Afterwards, we went to Mulino Val D’Orcia, a family-run organic farm in Tuscany that farms their own wheat to produce pasta and bread. The owner of the farm also gave us a presentation on their different wheats and how they make their pasta. Needless to say, celebrating away from home in Italy was definitely the best experience!

Enjoying the Views of Siena

What’s a better way to spend your afternoon than taking a stroll through Siena? My friends and I went to explore the beautiful sceneries of Siena during our second week here. The views were absolutely breathtaking, and we took a lot of photos during our walk. We even came across a fairground in Luna Park. This was a great way to see beyond the city walls and getting used to the area of Siena.

My friends and I exploring and enjoying the views of Siena.

Buon Appetito: Cooking the Italian Way

Is a trip to Italy truly complete without a cooking class? I had an amazing time participating in this activity, and I even bonded with the other students in the CET Siena program. We wore our aprons and chef’s hats with pride while making three different pastas: pici, ravioli, and gnocchi. We also made a dessert. Our hands were covered with flour and dough, but the hard work truly paid off in the end because, of course, we got to eat and enjoy our final product! While this activity was eventful, I now can bring this knowledge back to the United States and make pasta dishes for my family and friends. As always, buon appetito!

A Weekend Getaway in Sansepolcro

Weekends in the CET Siena program can either be for traveling or relaxing. One weekend, I decided to return to the first city I studied abroad in—Sansepolcro! Sansepolcro is a small town located in the Tuscan region, and it holds a special place in my heart.

When I arrived, I was greeted with smiles and hugs from my friends. It was a joy to go back to the places I’ve visited, and I also attended a mass for the first time. The highlight of my trip, however, was meeting Gin the ferret. His spunky attitude put a smile on my face. Overall, this weekend getaway was amazing, and I can’t wait to return for another weekend.

This is it for all of my adventures from the past three weeks and I can’t wait to make more memories. As always, a presto (See you soon)!

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