Studying abroad in Florence, Italy is the experience of a lifetime, but I still miss certain things from home. While I think traveling so much and being so busy has kept me from being too homesick, these are some of the things that I miss every day.
1. Iced Coffee
As a self-diagnosed iced coffee addict, I cannot even express how much I miss my daily iced coffee runs. I used to go all the time to Dunkin and get a large caramel iced coffee and finish it in an hour. In Italy, you can get all the cappuccinos and espressos that you want, but cold coffee is not a thing. I'd even love a Starbucks. There are exactly two places in Florence that serve iced coffee and they're both a 15-minute walk from my apartment. I still go and get two.
2. American Food
While the food in Italy is truly the best I've ever had, I have to confess I have finally reached the point in the semester where I crave American food. My friends and I were disappointed when we got to Italy and discovered that mozzarella sticks actually are not Italian. There's no such thing as Chinese or Mexican food in Italy. I would give anything for Shake Shack right now or a Long Island bagel. Don't take your delis and diners for granted. I'll probably eat my way through my winter break at home.
In Florence, I walk so much that I could probably walk a marathon. Living in a city is definitely so much different than going to school on a college campus or living in a suburb, so everything is within "walking distance," even if that walk is 25 minutes. When my mom and aunt visited, they were both a whole block behind me on the first day because I'm so used to speed-walking everywhere. I'm a little worried about my driving skills after three months without driving, but I will be so excited to drive again. Being able to drive to the mall or the beach or anywhere will be a lot easier. However, I can now say that I have successfully taken a public bus to an airport.
4. My Dogs
I constantly ask my family to send me pictures of my dogs because I miss them so much. Every time I FaceTime them, I spend at least 10 minutes talking to them so they remember my voice. Having them to cuddle with at home is definitely something that I miss the most because I've never gone so long without seeing them. Every time I see someone walking their dog on the street, I always run over and pet them.
Now that it is mid-November in Italy, the temperatures have definitely dropped a lot. When I first got here, I was obsessed with the hot weather, but now I've had to buy a winter coat, scarves and gloves. The heat in Italy is government-controlled and only goes on at certain hours, so our apartment is always freezing. I hate the cold, so I definitely miss my electric blanket and space heater from home.
6. American Holidays
It's so weird knowing that I'm going to miss Thanksgiving! Christmas is big in Italy just like in America, but Thanksgiving is a huge family get-together for me and it will be hard to miss it. Seeing everyone's Halloween Instagram posts definitely gave me FOMO, but I will be so happy to go home for Christmas.
7. My Friends And Family At Home
Three and a half months over 7,000 miles away from home is too long! While I absolutely love studying abroad and could honestly probably stay for an entire year, I definitely miss my family and friends back at home more and more the longer that I'm away. I can't wait to see everyone and catch up on everything that we've missed while apart.