On Friday, February 6th, our group hopped on a train to the “sleepy”, peaceful town of Orvieto. After about an hour and a half train ride north, consisting mostly of snoozing and one rowdy card game, we got off the train in a valley. BUT…we were missing one. After finding that the train doors would not reopen, we watched and held back giggles as our friend passed in the train window, heading to the next stop north of Orvieto. Luckily, she was back within a couple hours without too much trouble. Lesson to all of us, when Ozayr says get off the train quickly, he actually means quickly.
Orvieto was lovely, it is an old town on the top of tufa bluffs. To get to the top, we took a funicular which has been the main method of transport into the city since 1888. That is so cool! Duluth and other slopey US cities had funiculars back in the day but they were removed by the 1940s to make way for the automobile. I really appreciate how Europe expands and betters their existing infrastructure rather than destroying it and rebuilding. As like many other things I’ve noticed, Europe’s transportation system is far above and beyond the United States’.
The first thing we did in Orvieto was go down into a well from 1537 called San Patrizio. The deep wells staircases were beautifully engineered like a double helix for easier transport of water. It also made for a fun place to explore!
The rest of the afternoon was ours to freely roam and sketch. We discovered that Orvieto is made up of small winding streets, interesting architecture and delicious Orvietan wine (which some of us especially enjoyed). Going from Rome, a bustling city of close to 3 million to Orvieto was calm and relaxing. My favorite part of the day was looking out over the green hillsides. It can be quite refreshing to be surrounded by nature.
When it was time to leave, we all met at the train station to find that it would be an hour and a half late…good thing we were surrounded by good company. I feel so fortunate to be here with an amazing professor and smart, wonderful peers.
Here is a very short, unfinished, pretty cheesy video showing some of my classmates working on the term project. Can’t wait to see everyone’s final products!