Friday, August 18, 2006

Gite Università per Stranieri

This post is aimed at providing information to those who would come to Università per Stranieri (University of Foreigners), Perugia - Italy to pursue course in Italian Language and Culture.

Tours are arranged to different parts of Italy all throughout the year. Indians who would be coming to this university mostly during the months of July, August and September can get a clear picture of the kind of tour packages offered to them.

Given below are the different tour-packages offered in August 2006.

Aug 6 Firenze (Florence): 40 Euro
Aug 12-15 Sicilia: 212 Euro
Aug 12 Todi e Orvieto: 27 Euro
Aug 16 Palio di Siena (city of horse-race): 27 Euro
Aug 19/20 Napoli-Pompei-Capri: 105 Euro
Aug 20 Ravenna: 38 Euro
Aug 26/27 Venezia e le Isole: 105 Euro
Aug 27 Roma-Musei Vaticani: 30 Euro

The rates do not usually include expenses on food except breakfast, but they often include accomodation charges and entry-ticket charges.

Address of the tour company that arranges the tours this year:

Giullis Viaggi - Via Fabretti, 35 Perugia
Tel: 075 5727666

You don't need to plan the trips ahead by calling from your home country. But you can of course plan your budget by studying the charge for each trip.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Perugia life progresses

Here boredom is slowly creeping into our Italian life with an exception of routine wine and beer. One of the Indian students who came here on scholarship left for India just after one month saying that it's just a waste of time being here for three months. The syllabus of Level 3 programme is largely based on language learning and grammar. All in general. But Level 4 has specialisations in translation, culture and techno-economical. Level 4 is more challenging. Those who expect more from the course, but who do not have sufficient knowledge of Italian language will get caught in Level 3. Of course, one can choose one level up and get into Level 4. But it would be risky. In Level 3 classes are good but the lessons don't pose a challenge to you, which means it is the problem with the syllabus.

I didn't go anywhere outside Perugia. With a nominal amount of scholarship I do not want to spend any Euro on trips. It's true that Italy is a live museum of the world. But everything what you see around you is antique enough to take you to Periodo Etruscho, Periodo Romano and Periodo Medeovale. There is a Arch or Fort Door called Arco Etrusco, beside our university building. It was built a few centuries before Christ. What else, here one hardly finds an archaelogical building later than 12th Century AD. After a few days you will not be fascinated by the antiquity of the buildings. Firenze, Torino, Venezia, Napoli all the cities will have the same historic tales to tell. About the grandeur of early Catholic Church, about the conflict between the Church and the noble families, about medieval art, about Romans and their civil and military life. I avoid them knowingly.

What to say about World Cup 2006 celebrations. Public celebrations are the same anywhere in the world. Those who enjoy, enjoy. For me, who loves football not by watching others play but playing it myself, the game between Italy and France was important. France played better than Italy. I still have faith in Zidane and still think that he would not have been provoked unless something seriously had happened between Materazzi and him. I was supporting France during the final because it was frustrating to see Italian good-for-nothing fellows watching the game with a bottle of beer in their hand while their native or foreign girl friends, who do not know anything about the game, encouraging the Italian team only to convince their boy friends and to show them that they too are passionate about the game. Worse were the intentions of some of my Indian friends. Some of them told me that they took photos with European or American girls only to get a friendly kiss from them.. so pathetic.

One litre wine or beer costs only 0.50 Euros (of course, there are costlier ones). But a daily newspaper costs 1 Euro. Rates are all absurd here.

More info on Perugia Click here

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Wine and Women

Narrating my Perugia experiences I wrote in a mail to a friend: "Wine is cheap in Italy." He replied: "It is frustrating to know that wine is CHEAP there." He's right; wine cannot be cheap in Italy since it has been given high value in this country.

Vino Bianco (White Wine) and Vino Rosso (Red Wine) are the two varieties one can enjoy here. Their price varies from 1 Euro to 10 Euros per litre (i don't know whether there are much costlier ones). But why do I write all this. Wine is popular not only in Italy but in the Middle East, a region much familiar to an Indian. There is nothing new in knowing that Italians drink wine. But as an Indian, and particularly as an ex-JNUite I cannot forget the experiences with my lady classmates (with women) here. The difference in my experience is striking. In Jawaharlal Nehru University there is an air of gender sensitivity prevalent all along the campus, which is alleged to be one of the achievements of student community there. It is an air of suspicion, of anxiety and of neurosis. But here, a university in Europe, I have never come across a gender sensitive neurotic. Women are not here to nail you down if you stare at them. There is nothing like good relation or bad relation, nor is there anything outside the realm of 'enjoyment'. Everyone wants everyone else, perhaps always in an absolute sense. I know if one tries to comprehend this situation sitting in my subcontinent everything will seem to be problematic. But I don't think Europe has an answer for it. At least if what I see here is a cross section of European life. Are women cheap in Italy?