Britta: I have a home in Italy

The past week has been very stressful for everyone in the program (Bologna Consortial Studies Program). Since the second day of the program (Aug. 31) everyone has been searching for an apartment. At the end of June I made an account on a housing site for Bologna. I received around 40 emails a week advertising these great apartments in the center of the city for a reasonable price. I canceled my account since it was obvious that there were many options and I was looking 2 months early. However, as many options there may seems to be, it is actually a very difficult, long, stressful search.

Here in Bologna (I can’t say if it is like this in all of Italy) when looking for an apartment is like going in for a job interview. Not only are you looking for a home  that is clean, in a good location and has friendly italian housemates, they are also looking for someone who they think they will get along with and will fit into their lifestyle. No matter how much you like an apartment, you have no say or choice. It ultimately comes down to the people renting out the room.

The first day of the search I went to 7 apartments. The following day 3, the day after that 4. There was a smaller quaint apartment I visited on Wednesday. There were two very nice girls who greeted me and offered me a coffee and showed me around the apartment. There was a little terrace with a hammock and a tree growing over half of it. The apartment was filled with sunshine and there couldn’t have been anything better.

I decided that was the place to live. I wrote them an email the following day expressing my interest in the apartment. They said they had to wait until Sunday. Those were the longest 4 days of my life. I had to keep looking in case they were going to say no. So, Saturday morning I went to go look at yet another apartment—one that was also very beautiful and one that was offered to me. But I wanted to live in the first apartment. I was torn between the two. Do I choose the place that is a little bigger, closer to the center, but a little more expensive but I haven’t met the girls I’d be living with or do I choose the one that is a little smaller, but with an awesome terrace, and the friendliest girls?

Sunday night, I stopped by my first choice apartment and met the third girl I’d be living with. She was amazing. And then…they offered me the room! Monday I packed up my things from the hotel and brought half of it over to my new, “real” home. Tuesday I took an adventurous trip to Ikea, and by Tuesday night I was in the apartment eating homemade pizza with my house mates.

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