Ciao a tutti!

Ciao a tutti!
ho raggiunto una svolta decisiva nella mia vita, allora ho deciso di fare questo blog ancora... leggi, commenta e divertiti :)

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Finally Settling In!

Hey All! So I've finally gotten all unpacked, gotten groceries and started really settling in! I love our apartment (OMG! Tones of Storage! and our balcony is very cute!) but have had some interesting experiences and lessons learned already!

Apartment Lesson One :  Do Not Be Overly Optimistic About the Amount Of Hot Water Your Tank Provides You

So the first couple days have definitely been a learning experience, especially when it comes to how much hot water we have. The first night, I made the mistake of turning on the dishwasher and then going for a shower - lets just say the shower did not last long, and the past couple of days I have learned that shower time is not time to doddle... I believe on average our hot water lasts maybe 5-10 min, just enough time to wash your hair before it turns cold. We will definitely need to learn to schedule our hot water use!

Apartment Lesson Two : Electricity Limitations
So Yesterday, I found out the limit of our electricity flow... and the washing machine on + blow dry my hair = breaker turning off. At first I was like oh great, now what, I thought it might be a building wide thing b/c of the construction they were doing... but no the elevator was working. And that's when I was really like OH NO what do I do? Luckily my lovely neighbors were able to help me and showed me what to do to fix it! With two of us, we will definitely need to learn to also schedule our electricity usage!

So those have been the two major lessons I have learned about this apartment, other stupid things include:
  • if turning the key one way wont open the door, try the other direction (why this happened I do not know, might have been b/c it was 2:30 in the morning...)
  • if pulling on the cupboard door to open it does not work, try pushing on it (go figure)
On a more positive note, a few tips for future exchangers on what I believe will be good to have/do for your apartment:
  • If possible, find the apartment before you leave. It is much nicer being able to move into your place as soon as you get there, then staying in hotels and doing the search (not only have they found it difficult, and even frustrating, but it gets expensive eating out all of the time and what not). It may be hard to find an apartment while still in Canada if you don't know the language, but if you can find someone that does, use the websites provided by the university to search on. Once you find a place, to make sure its legit, ask for LOTS of pictures, have skype meetings with video and even facebook communication if you are pretty confident with the place, this can be very helpful. Also try to put off payment of the deposit until completely necessary.
  • A good landlord will make a big difference. Try to find one that will be willing to help you settle in and solve initial problems! mine has been super helpful, and it makes a big difference.
  • Once you have a place, from my experience so far, you may still want to bring your own pillow and towel. Even though they may be provided, they are not always the best (or nicest feeling). These are things you can also find relatively cheep here if you come around January b/c it is one of the months where most places have sales.
  • Slippers are a must to either bring or buy here (i found a pair for just under 5 euro)
  • Make numerous photo copies of important documents (passport, acceptance letter, flight info, etc) before you leave. You will need these for permit of stay and for registering with the authorities through your landlord (the landlords/ladies have two days to provide certain information to the authorities once you move in).
  • Ladies, be overly prepared with make up! my eye liner lasted a whole month and make up is much more expensive here!
  • Be prepared, that although this is a large city, people in many stores DO NOT speak English. I mean its not like its a big deal b/c when being rung through the till the number is displayed, however it can be a shock.
Hope that list is helpful for now, I'll try and input more advice as I go!

Anyways, off of the apartment talk! So I've gotten out of the apartment and walking around the area somewhat. It seems very nice, and Bocconi is maybe a max 20 min walk which is very good! Due to my unfortunate electricity accident, I have not made it to the ISD (international student desk) yet, because I arrived after hours. But that will wait till Monday then! I did get out with Rajiv and a new friend from Arazona (sorry I forgot your name :S...) last night! it was lots of fun! We got pizza.... AND IT WAS HUGE!!!! I thought my family made big, personal sized pizza's but these were massive... and we finished it all!

MMmmmmmm! PIZZA!
We also got a few beers! But we all got very different sizes (and were all feeling slightly differently after finishing them, LOL Rajiv):

Rajiv Got a Liter, New Friend (sorry man) got a 1/2 liter and I just got a Bottle! lol
It was fun though! and we found, with the help of a group of Italians, a fun discotheque where we partied it up until about 2am. We also met some other exchange students from the USA. Was a good time! but all of that pizza and dancing did not feel all so great on the stomach later that night!

NOTE: one great thing I noticed, was how well lit all of the streets are at night in my area! seems pretty safe!

So it has all been a fun experience so far! I cannot wait till my roomie comes on Tuesday though! Yay! and Orientation and the Language course starts next week!

If your in the area come one by!
Miss You All!



Ellie Prager said...

Steph, I LOVE that you're so detailed! Wish I could have been this good about it :) I hear you about having a good landlord, it means a lot. As for the water/electricity thing, I'm surprised! They do this in residences in Chinese unis, but I didn't think it was an everyday issue in urban Italy. Hmm...

Anyway, looks like your travels were awesome - it's so great that you got to go with James! You keep having a good time and keeping us posted :) And say hi to my Chinese-Italian friend Maurizio for me if you get a chance!

Steph said...

Heyyy! thank ya :) and I will try and get in touch with him! ps. everyone the "new friends" name is Antonio! lol... my bad