I started my first day of classes today. Nothing crazy, I'm only doing part-time, so it's only a couple classes a day. And the first one I was supposed to have today was cancelled since the professor was not able to get out of his driveway. And that was most likely because he doesn't really have much of a driveway after the storm. I really should get some pictures, because all the rushing water was literally tearing roads apart 50 feet down the road from where I was yesterday. Luckily, I left for Vermont on Saturday, and today the weather has been beautiful. Despite all the demolition caused by tropical storm Irene. What a bitch.
    But now that I'm settled into the new place and have a normal schedule again, I also need to jump back into the language learning. And what better way to do so than by having a party. You see, I normally go to a big Italian festival in Lawrence, MA every year for Labor Day weekend. My great grandmother has gone every year since she was around six years old, and it's a great time filled with unbelievable food and tons of family. And lots of yelling in Italian, in honor of the Saints Alfio, Filadelfo, and Cirino. But check out this link and you'll get the gist.
    In any case, with my recent automobile problems (the material in the wheel well on my car caught fire, and I pulled over post-haste before speedily dialing 911), I won't be able to make it this year. I was very sad about it, but then I was reminded that I have a new living place off campus and an entire upstairs for people to hang out in. So in honor of the Feast of the Three Saints, this weekend we'll be having an Italian theme party! I can't wait to try cooking some Italian food using my new cookbook and acting Italian for the night. Now all I need to find is some classic Italian music to play in the background during the party.
    Well, my day's almost over, and I'll be heading back to the apartment for the night once my companion gets out of class at 5. I'm just waiting until then and double checking my schedule for this and next semester. So I'm gonna get back to that and you can get back to your life. A più tardi!
    Honestly, I didn't even know it happened. I was on the subway when it happened, and I didn't feel a thing. My girlfriend did, however, notice the digital sign that listed which train we were on flickered for a second, and she felt like it was some horror or sci-fi movie thing. And I, of course, told her it was nothing, and that she was just being paranoid. It wasn't until everyone was in the streets on their phones that we heard someone mention an earthquake. So I guess from now on when I tell her it's nothing, she'll remind me about the earthquake.
    And of course, I knew I could count on you, internet. I knew a natural disaster could never occur without someone mocking it openly on the internet. Ok, it wasn't really a "disaster" in NYC, which made it all the funnier when all the reaction in the city was parodied by others. One of my favorite quotes I read yesterday was from someone's Twitter account (don't remember whose, it was on some website listing people's reactions) was this: "In retrospect, I resorted to cannibalism rather fast after the earthquake."  Oh, and this picture, which many have commented over:


    Well, only a few more days until I head back to Vermont for my last two semesters of schooling, and I'm actually looking forward to it this time around. Maybe because I'll be off campus, not have to wear a uniform, only have 11 credits of classes, and not have to go to any parades, formations, or any of that crap! I guess it also helps that the people we're staying with are super chill. They're down with putting in a bar and doing some beer brewing. Plus, they've got chickens. Yes, I said chickens. にわとり。Galline. I can't wait until they have to get rid of some and we get fresh chicken meat. It's just another one of those things to look forward to.
    I have to be off to figure out some things before classes begin, so unfortunately, I have to leave now and actually do some work, make some calls, run some errands. The next time I write, I'll be in the state of green mountains, enjoying my normal college experience, so until then, しっかりして。 Stay belìssimo internet.
    That was quick, huh? Here I am writing to all of you on my new computer I just bought a few days ago. It was a real good deal, and it has all the specifications I was looking for so that I'll be able to run any engineering programs I'll use this next year at college. So good for me and good for you!
    Today is actually my brother's birthday party, so I can't write too long, but I will say that I redownloaded the Japanese learning tool I had been using for a while (it's WaKan, on the links menu) and also a different one for learning Italian! It's working pretty well so far, and I learned a bunch of new words on it already. So now I know how to ask a local to help me out (può aiutarmi?). After that, I'd hope they know some English, or I'd be boned.
    With my computer out for a while, I haven't been getting much practice in other languages with the exception of listening to my music in the car, so it's been slow. I hope now I can move things along again and really throw it into overtime.
    But I've gotta leave and eat cake and enjoy my family, which will be loads more fun than writing for people who aren't reading anyway. No offense, you're just not my loving, wonderful family. So arrivederci for now, and I'll be quite content to keep writing in the next couple months. じゃね!
 So wouldn't you believe, less than a week after that first post, my computer bites it big time! I mean, it won't even turn on anymore. I'm on the hunt for a new computer for school now, but it might be another week or two, so until then, I can't post anything new. Sorry everyone. But then it will be all good! Sorry again for the inconvenience.