My name is Maria Ruettiger and I am a sophomore, studying abroad in Florence Italy or as the Italians would say, Firenze. My major is elementary education and I chose to study abroad in Florence because I have always wanted to go to Italy and immerse myself into a different culture. Florence is a smaller city compared to a city like Rome. In Florence you are able to walk everywhere and the streets are narrower than one would be used to in the United States. I can tell it is very family orientated where I live because I constantly am seeing families together and I have met many shop owners that their businesses, in fact, are run by the families themselves. I have almost been in Italy for 3 weeks now and I have not traveled much outside of Florence because I wanted to explore the city I am living in and wanted to get comfortable here. Although, I did travel to Rome and it was a breathtaking city, but much more spread out then Florence. In Rome I was able to take a tour in the Vatican, go into a Church called Santa Maria Maggiore, see the Colossum, and go to the Trevi Fountain.