Dazed and Confused

Posted by Alex | | Posted On Wednesday, 14 July 2010 at 14:23

You know that feeling you get when things start coming together? Well, I'm starting to feel it now. Seven years of Spanish, and two of Italian, are starting to finally pay off - and the dividends really aren't too bad. I know I've already talked about where I'd applied to go, but now it's so much closer and much more tangible! Well - Pavia is at least.

Yesterday I had the lovely surprise of opening my inbox to find an email from Pavia's Centro Assistenza Studenti. They had received and reviewed my application for accommodation, and were willing to offer me six months in a single room out in the Biomedical Residences. On the one hand, this filled me with glee - I have a potential place to stay! On the other, I have no idea where it is.

You see, Pavia, like most Italian Universities, is old. Its Halls exist pretty much in the centre of town, near all the Faculties. Collegio Nuovo is pretty much in the heart of Pavia, near to the Humanities Department; Santa Caterina da Siena is to the north-east, near to the Sciences Department. Other Collegi are dotted around, close to other departments. The more modern Residences seemed to be in the centre too. Simple enough, so far, right?

Well - I did some research. The Biomedical Residences are funded by the University College of Santa Caterina da Siena, naturally. The logical step, then, is to assume that they are going to be east of the town on the fringes near the Collegio (Santa Caterina da Siena is an all-female Collegio, while Biomedical Residences are mixed). Nope - it's not there. A little more digging led me to a street address - Via Giulotto.

After some time spent on Google Maps, I found out that Via Giulotto didn't exist...as far as they were concerned. Was I being led on a wild goose chase? It would seem so. Until I found another link mentioning the opening of the Residences - July 5th, 2010, the Foundation of Santa Caterina da Siena opened the new residences, situated on the Polo Cravino Campus, to students. Polo Cravino! Of course. Wait - where's Polo Cravino?

This is when panic set in. I know that Pavia has links with Mantova and Cremona. I know that they have an entire music department in Cremona; what's to say they don't have a Biosciences one there too? Again, it seemed like Google Maps might be enought to save me. So, I searched, and was led to find that Polo Cravino is the other name of the campus on Via Bassi - half an hour out of the centre. Essentially, I would have a half hour walk from the station on arrival...and a half hour walk to my lectures.

But - I'm used to that. I lived out my entire first year of study at Cardiff in Talybont North - initially a 30minute walk from lectures, but, by the end I could do it in 15. So, with that in mind, I snapped up the offer! I have a place to live in Pavia, for six months!

Now, the only problem is...where can I get a cheap flight out of here?


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