Reflections and First Impressions: Rome and Venice

When the IMA team returned from their travels to Rome and Venice, they spent a few minutes sharing their thoughts about the experience on video. Although a couple of their voices were missing, a few consistent themes seemed to surface about their travels. A few technical problems with this entry but, hopefully you will enjoy the student impressions. Look for the second portion of this piece (Reflections part 2)!

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Reflections Part 2

Upon return from Venice and Rome, students along with Tariq and Tiffany shared their overall thoughts of the travel experience. Look for a final post featuring their voices and a series of snapshots very soon.

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My how time flies!

Hi everyone,
Well, the international adventures of the MAP students in the Teen Global Exchange Program will soon be coming to an end. We heard back from them and the photos they will soon post will amaze and astound you! Here is a photo sent by Tariq! Ah, he captured the essence of Venice in all its glory.

I have a feeling the students won’t realize how culturally stimulating this trip was until they get home and make comparisons. That was my experience when I left the US borders. Home made pizza for my dinner tonight in honor of the return of our students to Indy.

Hey Ponce group! How will you share what you did, what you learned and what your impressions were? I hope you all plan to share your experiences in your community. Would love to hear from you when you get back!

Alberto will be posting again very soon so look for words of wisdom and of course, more questions from our Indy Connection host. Ciao for now!

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Greetings from Venice

Hey, everyone! (What’s up, Alberto?) These couple of days have been simply amazing. It is such a different experience here. My first thoughts of Rome were that it kind of reminded me of New York. Everyone is always busy and walking around.

Those first days were really incredible. I really loved the architecture! All of the buildings were very beautiful. Those first days (when we were waiting for the Indy students) we went to a Pizzeria and the food was very fresh. Even the cheese tasted different!

The people were sooo different too because they were so busy all the time, just walking and walking. Then, we got on a train to go to Venice. AND THE TRAIN BROKE DOWN! It was a very difficult experience because we were so anxious to get there. When we got here we met Diana and Anita, who work at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection. They were very hospitable. They took us to a restaurant and we ate A LOT!! It was a lot of fun. These couple of days we’ve been walking and seeing important places in Venice like Piazza San Marco and the Doge’s Palace.

It has been a very interesting experience comparing Venice and Rome because as I said before, Rome is very busy and crowded, whereas Venice is very quiet and traditional. Both places are filled with so much culture and history. Oh, and before I forget, meeting the Indy and Venetian students has been an enormous pleasure. They are all very nice and I’ve had loads of fun with them. I feel very lucky and grateful to be a part of this. I don’t want this experience to end!


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Hi everybody,

By now you know that the student’s flight was delayed due to some technical difficulties with the plane. So instead of arriving on the 6th the students will arrive on the 7th of June.To break things down a bit I will be covering the Biennale story from here at the IMA. I will be sending the students both written and video blogs that will be asking many hard and easy questions like how is the weather?, how are the people reacting to the United states pavilion? And with those questions I will receive answers from the students that you the public will have access to.  Also with that said, if you guys have any questions you would like to ask to me or the students feel free to ask and leave a comment.  I’ll do my best to answer all your questions.

Before I go, how do you feel about this international competition that the United States is taking part of? Remember this only happens once every two years!  I will keep everyone updated with what’s going on with the trip and students. Peace/ciao/adios

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Delayed…Not Denied

On the one hand, we got delayed a day.

On the other hand, we’re going to Italy.

“To be without some of the things you want is an indispensable part of happiness” – Bertrand Russell

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Yesterday, 11:45a.m., left my house after a prayer and our last goodbye with my family. 12:40p.m. Arrived at the airport to find Kazzerat waiting for me. As we wait for the others to arrive we talk about how we cried as we left our families. It’s my first time away from my family. It’s going to be hard, but I know I’ll be okay. Now 3:05p.m, waiting for the plane, I have many emotions scared, nervous, but excited and anxious to get to our destination – ITALY! An hour later, I find out that our flight had to be canceled because of a delay! I was in shock! I couldn’t believe it, my first trip and the worst of luck. You should have seen our faces when we first entered the airport. We looked like little kids winning a prize. When we left the airport the smiles that were on our faces were no longer there. They were broken with disappointment. But hey, we have to stay positive because tomorrow will be a better day.

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Tick, tick, tick…. Time to go!

Hello IMA friends!

So the time has come to make the long journey to Rome and then Venice. I am so anxious to hear from the students about their trip! Alberto and I made a really fun video to start off the adventure. The noise you hear in the background is our lovely fountain that sits right in front of the Nourish Cafe’ (inside the IMA). During the better spring weather (minus the rain and wind), people can be found sitting outside enjoying the sun and eating meals prepared by our great Chef – with ingredients supplied by local farmers.

Check out Alberto’s video blog and look for more questions from him on Our Voices.

For the Indy (Hoosier) crew, I hope this short video offers you a little bit of home while you are away.

I said I was going to have an Italian dinner in honor of your trip and guess what– I made spaghetti for dinner last night. Sorry, no picture of it. It smelled and looked so good I inhaled my delightful meal before I could photograph it.

Imagine…..fresh sauce made with Roma tomato, garlic, sliced onion, Italian sausage and a little mozzarella and Parmesan to top it off. Hopefully this description will inspire you to take the time to savor every bite of your first meal there and notice any differences between Italian food in Italy and our restaurants in the United States or Puerto Rico. Enjoy your first meal and explorations in Rome!

Buona fortuna e A presto (Good luck and see you soon!) please correct my Italian if necessary.

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First Time for Everything

The more I think about the trip to Italy, I get mixed emotions; excited, nervous, scared. I’ve never gotten on a plane, let alone been away from my family for two weeks.  I also think about my phone and not being able to communicate with anyone from home for two weeks. That’s extremely scary! I use my phone way too much; but yet again it can help me out so I won’t be distracted.  What I’m trying to do to calm my nerves is think about the experience I will be getting from Italy, meeting new people and trying new things because there is always a first time for everything.

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Wow, Italy!

“Wow, Italy! It’s still unbelievable to me. A dream come true. It is amazing to see how art can unite many countries in a peaceful way. I never knew about the Biennials until now, and what fascinates me is that there are many around the world. This project to me is very valuable, because it’s not just about art. It’s also about knowing each other. Learning about other cultures. And even learning about our own culture. This is an unique experience! (I’m so excited, I just can’t wait for the “meet-up”)

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