Life in Italy: week 15

Quote of the week:

The best way to predict the future is to create it

-Peter Drucker 

If someone were to ask me what I’ll be doing or where I’ll be in 5 years time I honestly wouldn’t be able to answer them. I’ve always loved the way my life works; I have no set plans just a general idea of what I want to do (and even that I’m still not sure of!). It makes me feel very free and excited for the future, who knows where I will go and what I will experience? Will I be based in the UK, Germany, Italy or somewhere entirely different? Only time will really tell.

Just the thought of getting a job in an office and staying in the same place for the next 10 years just fills me with dread. It would make me feel so trapped, unfulfilled and probably very unhappy. I know peoples lives work differently and people are happy with different things so the stability of long term work may be very appealing to some, just not me! I love the uncertainty and freedom my life has, it allows me to live in different places, meet different people and travel. 

Which brings me to the above quote….yes, predicting the future is impossible but you can generally gauge what you’ll be doing from what you enjoy and have a passion for. Right now mine in teaching English as a foreign language, which is unnecessary in the UK meaning I have to have to work abroad (which I love). But who is to say that won’t change in a few years time once I’ve worked with children more? This is exactly the reason why I don’t know my future – I think deep down I’m worried about pigeonholing myself into a career that I might not necessarily still enjoy in 10 years time. Or even limiting myself to a certain country by doing a teaching qualification there which doesn’t have any worth in other countries. 

Right now I’m happy that I have the next academic year 90% secured; I’ll be returning to Chiari in October to spend the whole academic year here in Italy….after that who knows?For now I’ve created my future, even if it is only in the short term. I seem to have developed a trend of working year by year and seeing what comes along, which for right now works for me but I know it’s not sustainable for the future. 

Anyway after that 400 words that were totally unplanned but I’m pleased to have written, here is week 15 of my life in Italy!! Yes, I know, week 15…in someways I’ve been here for ages and then when I see the number of the week I shock myself! Have a really been here for nearly 4 months?! I suppose I have even if it feels quicker. Week 15 has been pretty quiet as the weather hasn’t been the best and I’ve somehow (god knows how) developed really bad sciatica which reached its peak this week. These 2 factors mean I haven’t really been able to go anywhere and visit new places like I wanted to.

On Monday I finished work at 11am and the weather actually wasn’t too bad so I went for a bike ride around Chairi and snapped this lovely photo. I think I’m starting to see Chiari for its beauty a bit more this week, yes I’ve lived here for 10 weeks now and I’m fully aware that its a quaint Italian village, especially in the historical centre where I live. But this week I’m really appreciating and seeing Chiari more, as my dad would say ‘You’ve been walking around with your eyes closed’. To some extent he is probably right, I mean I’ve walked or ridden down the path pictured below at least 3 times a week and I’ve never really thought much about it other than the first few times when I was like ‘wow, this is beautiful’. I don’t know what I was doing there other 20-odd times but when I rode down it on Monday the sun was shining, there was a slight breeze, birds were tweeting and no one else was around so it kind of hit me just how nice it was and I had a bit of a surreal moment….13442101_1385690371446184_1857853807_o

On Tuesday I went to the primary school to watch the final performances of the sketches/plays I’d been helping them to prepare the past few weeks. It lasted about 2 1/2 hours which was pretty long but they all did so well and everyone enjoyed themselves. The lower classes made up the audience so they’re English was very basic but they were laughing and participating so understood a lot and got the jokes the students made. Overall I was a success and really great for me to see so many children actually wanting to speak English!

In the evening I went for a meal with all of the other teachers from school to celebrate the end of the school year and to say goodbye to each other. It was held at La Colombera, an amazing restaurant and golf course in the village of Castrezzato (about 5km south of Chairi)…

There were about 30 of us in total and we had 5 courses of delicious food in an amazing location, the restaurant is in an old barn/agricultural building with wooden beams, whitewashed walls and views of the garden and terrace…

The food itself was delicious and there was a lot of it – 5 courses and extras served by the waitresses. To start we had savoury pastries with ham and fennel and then risotto with bacon. For mains we had beef and polenta (which I forgot to photograph) and swordfish with vegetables. For desert we had macadamia ice cream with fruit. It’s safe to say that by the end of this night we were all so so full!

To find out more about La Colombera click here.

Wednesday was the last day of school!! I know, school is finished already, seems I’ve only been here 5 minutes! We had a full school awards ceremony for the sports day in the sports hall which was very loud but great to see the students get their medals. Then for the rest of the lessons we used – if you don’t know what it is then you should! It’s an amazing tool to help teach English as it shows popular music videos and their lyrics with gaps for students to fill in real time. It’s really fun and very useful to get the students interested. By the time the final bell rang at 2pm it felt like the roof was going to lift off the school; everyone was loud, energetic and ready to be free of school! The noise was so so loud I just sat in silence for about 2 hours after getting home. It was a pretty sad day actually as I know I probably won’t see any of the third class students again but I’m looking forward to next year with the 2 remaining classes and the new first classes.

On Friday I went for a walk to Villa Mazzotti to enjoy the few hours of sunshine we had. It was very busy as all of the schools have finished so I chatted with a lot of students whilst walking around or sitting and relaxing…


On Saturday I walked around Chiari in between the periods of rain and started to see it for what it really is and all the quirks it has. I’ve started photographing houses around the town (mainly doors) as I think they’re really beautiful and give you a look into the lives of the people who live or work there…


In the afternoon I went to Brescia with Antonio, Poala and Ciro for a walk around. The weather was nice so the city was very busy. There were also a few street shows to watch with acrobats and sketch artists. As you can see I even took some photos of doors… I don’t know where this curiosity has come from but I’m just running with it as the photos are great…

Piazza della Loggia

In the evening we had pizza for tea; mine with mozzarella, brie, speck (kind of like thin bacon) and radish ❤ We also watched the England v Russia match and I still can’t get over Russia scoring in the 92nd minute!


Today (Sunday) I haven’t really done much, just spent time relaxing and we had a lovely dinner together. I tidied and organised my flat a little but other than drinking tea and listening to music I’m a bit stretched at what to write :’)

This coming week I’m hoping my sciatica gets a bit better (maybe a trip to the physio is needed) and the weather is a little better to as I hope to visit Lake Como or even Padua or Vicenza. It all really depends on if I can sit on the train for 2 or so hours and then walk around for a few hours. Anyway, I know this blog is nowhere near as interesting as last weeks but this is a better reflection of my life here!

Thanks for reading and ciao for now! 🙂

Follow my life in Italy from the beginning:

first weekend

week 1

week 2

week 3

week 4

week 5

week 6

week 7

weeks 8, 9 and 10

Le Cinque Terre trip

weeks 11, 12, 13 and 14



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