A Market in Turin: the Walkway for a True Experience

Kurumi S. is currently a junior at SYA Italy and a blogger for the Campus Reporter program. She comes to SYA from Spence School in New York.

The lively market place in Turin was the biggest of its kind I had ever seen. Living in NYC, I don't get the opportunity to see such local food being sold, and especially not in this manner. Several people were friendly, answering all of our random questions about the food and about Turin's culture; others were working hard and were less inclined to focus on our questions, but rather invested in their jobs. The diligent nature of the Turin workers was clear in this brief image of daily life in Turin. The people swarmed, each participating in the city buzz. The red canopies to the fruit booths reflected off of the surface of the foods, making each product glitter with a captivating shine.

I wander around each booth, at first silently as I take in each apple and banana as symbols of my experiences in Turin, the juicy content satisfying my desire for exploration. Then I turn myself into action mode, as I strike up conversations with the locals, pushing myself to implement all of the vocabulary and grammar I have learned thus far. I ask them how their day is, about their profession, and about the import and export information of the food they sell. I feel myself slowly gaining a better understanding of the culture while making indelible memories with my beloved friends. I walk through the streets of Turin, meandering through the marketplace, attempting to gain a better grasp on the culture and Piedmontese language. I play into the city buzz, and try to understand what living here would look like. I forget that Dave and Roberta are following us around taking cute pictures for the yearbook. I forget that I am doing this for an assignment for Italian Language and Culture. For once, I feel myself living in the moment and engaging in the things I am interested in.

The well-renowned spring trips was divided into those who chose to visit the north and those who chose the south of Italy. This experience truly offers an encompassing education, as we learn more for life outside and hands-on rather than for school in a classroom setting. My capstone topic pertaining to Italian marketing strategies, I thought it would be fitting to learn northern Italy’s manner of conducting business by studying its rather successful economy, starting with its local economy. La Porta Palazzo, Europe’s largest open-air market, was a wonderful place to start. I had the opportunity to meet new people, appreciate the working vibe of Turin, and take home some delicacies for my own enjoyment.

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Sadie reflects back on the first half of the year and now is trying to take advantage of the time she has left in Italy.