Sicilian tongue-twisters amid all the sight-seeing

21:23, Jan 31 2013
abby anderson
STUNNING SCENERY: Abby Anderson with her host sister at Taormina, with the sea, hills and Sicily's only volcano in the background.

South Canterbury teenagers are a globe-trotting lot and Attitude is following some of them while they discover many wonderful parts of the world. This week, we catch up with Mackenzie College student Abby Anderson, who is in Sicily, Italy, on an AFS exchange.

The past weeks haven't been my busiest but I still manage to be doing and seeing new things. Now at school I have finally changed some of my classes, which means I no longer sit in one room for six hours straight.

It feels good to be doing work more to my ability, I never realised how much I would miss school and the feeling of accomplishment it gave me handing in my assignments.

Now every week instead of physics, philosophy and the dreaded Latin, I take a mix of biology, art and English classes. Though sometimes I wonder if taking English is such a good idea. I feel like I am guaranteed to embarrass myself, especially considering the 6.5 I scored on my last test . . . out of 10!

I have visited the beautiful town of Taormina. It has taken me four months to visit it and I am the closest exchange student to this village.

It is set in the hills of Sicily beside the beach and is full of old Greek influences, one of the main attractions being the ruins of a Greek theatre.


Thin cobblestone streets and old buildings - it really was a beautiful town.

One thing giving me a bit of bother living here is the language. But not the Italian. Although I am far from good I know that I am learning every day and I can safely have a good conversation.

It is the other language that I didn't even consider before coming here: Sicilian. They are forever speaking in the Sicilian dialect which is a completely separate dialect from standard Italian. I have had more than one time where I thought I had suddenly forgotten all my Italian but it turned out they were just speaking in dialect.

The Timaru Herald