Indiana University Overseas Study

Erik Trautman

Shadows flood the lawns at the Margherita gardens as the sun sinks. The unkempt grass waves in the breeze. The teeter-totter rocks in synchronization with the wail of a distant ambulance and children bob around on a large trampoline.

Spring has arrived, escorting a myriad of balls and Frisbees that weave around in all directions against the peach sky. The college kids pop around like popcorn on their slack lines. Some juggle at the gardens, others play with devil sticks, and everything is amongst a circus of dogs. One guy shapes bubbles and another carries some tall flowers.

man creating giant bubbles in park

crowds in the park
I’ve passed a few afternoons in the gardens—you can tell because I’m red and spotty. On the first of May and on Mother’s day I picnicked and sampled the stands: pecorino (sheep) cheese from Sardenia and olives from Puglia.

another large vendor booth

a vendor booth

I visited the turtles in the central lagoon—the turtles I met in August and tried capture in Blog 1. I was disheartened because all those afternoons had passed and muttering the pair of words “un caffé” to the barista gave me away as an English speaker. I expected passing eight months in these gardens would transform me, I thought having predominately Italian chargers meant I was a different person, but it seems, in this pond, I will always be the same old turtle slugging behind all the fast fish. This is, however, a rather tranquil lagoon in a simply magical place. I’m surrounded by friends and sites I fear to miss and I’m no longer hunting turtles.

a hut with a wall of flowers

yarn and knitwares

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