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16 March 2010
Last week I spent a day at the Consulate General talking with the wonderful Lucia about my options for studying in Italy. I was informed that I can only apply to one University, but before I apply there were a few more steps I had to take.

First, I had to acquire my transcripts from the registrar's office of each of my schools including high school, have the registrar physically sign them and have them stamped by a notary. Afterward, I must go to Austin to Secretary of State office and have each document stamped with an Apostille from S.O.S.

Did I mention that I have to have the registrar write a letter stating my full name and birthday and that per their records that I graduated from said school in date/year?

Yeah its a lot of work my friend but work I am willing to put time into.

At the moment I am studying for my Comps Exam to graduate this semester from my University here in Houston and come May I will be applying to the University of Catania and graduating from the University of Houston.

I have already been in contact with the Chair of Foreign Affairs at the University of Catania and it seems that I have a good chance of being accepted into the program. Once accepted I have decided to move to Italy in July once my lease is up here so that I can get used to the Italian language and begin to practice it so that I am not completely loss once I begin classes in September.

I decided on the University of Catania because I used to be stationed at the Navy Base near by and as a veteran I have a good chance of acquiring a job there part time. Also, I have a wonderful Sicilian friend of 15 years that has offered to share her apartment and help me find a place to live after I get a job.

It is also inexpensive in Sicily compared to Italy. I can find a two bedroom apartment for 300 Euros which is the equivalent of $450 a month.

I also find that Sicilians are friendlier, open to foreigners and very social. Its a beautiful island and I will definitely have a second chance at happiness there. I can't wait to go to Taormina and walk on the black sand beaches. Go to the restaurant on the side of Mt. Etna where the mother hand makes the noodles. And eat at the Panini Ristorante on the road between Nas I and Nas II in Sigonella.

On an even better note, a good friend of mine is planning to study in France this Fall and Brianna may be going to Spain instead of Italy. I will keep you posted as things develop.

Buona fortuna a tutti!