Ciao, Professore! Are We There Yet?
Posted October 24, 2012
Italian teacher Mike DelGuercio '04 reports that on October 23 thirty-eight students from grades 8 thru 10 took a road trip to Newark, NJ and NYC where they immersed themselves in Italian language, culture and cappuccino. Click here for photos.
The group, accompanied by four contento chaperones, hopped on a bus at Delbarton and headed straight to Newark's Caffe Intermezzo espresso bar where our scholars breakfasted (breakfast can be a verb, si?) cornetti and espresso or cappuccino. Watching Italian television and soaking up the vibe of old Italian men sitting around the 'bar' added to the ambiance. Their only requirement was ordering in Italiano, and the positive by-product was that caffeine caused the boys to maintain an alert -- some might say 'wired' -- demeanor for the rest of the day. Molto bene!
Next stop for our Italian culture warriors was St Lucy's church, which had just finished celebrating the Festa of San Gerardo, patron saint of mammas and bambinos. They toured the church, an impressive edifice that was completely constructed in the early 1900s by Italian immigrants, and also visited the Italian-American museum which highlights the history of the old First Ward section of Newark and the influence of Italian immigrants on the area.
Then it was a quick bus ride through the tunnel into Manhattan, the Grande Mela, where DelGuercio saved the best for last: a visit to Eataly, at 200 Fifth Avenue, where our men explored the staggering food options and were demonstrably excited (over-caffeination helped) by the options for lunch. "From the focaccia to the panini of prosciutto and mozzarella, to the pizza and the gelato, I think all the kids thoroughly enjoyed it," DelGeurcio reports.
The ride home consisted of dozing on the bus, an Italian tradition, plus watching the conclusion of the film 'Ciao, Professore!', a 1992 comedy about a teacher from northern Italy who is sent by mistake to an impoverished town in the Napoli region of southern Italy. The guys also tried to play their new favorite pastime, the Italian card game 'scopa' that they have picked up in class and at the caffe. Scopa means "broom", since taking a scopa means to sweep the cards from the table. According to wiki, "Watching a game of scopa can be a highly entertaining activity, since games traditionally involve lively, colorful, and somewhat strong-worded banter in between hands." Sounds like our kind of game.
Meanwhile, Delbarton's annual field trip reminds us that Italian language, culture and food offer wonderful appeal and make us want to travel, learn and, especially, eat more. Eh, d'accordo?
Andare escursioni sul campo d'onda! Or for the rest of us...Go Wave Field Trips!