Alessandro and Brunella (seen above with Scottie, the school mascot!) are from the beautiful Italian city of Naples. They have been studying at Global School of English for a few months now and recently were kind enough to take some time to chat about how they are finding life in Scotland and at the School.
I began by asking them why had they chosen to come to Scotland.
Brunella said that they had read about Scotland on the web and felt that they would be comfortable here and enjoy it. Alessandro said that they hadn’t seriously considered going anywhere else in the UK to study. One of the attractions of Edinburgh in particular was that it is very different from Naples.
Brunella said they really enjoy living here. I then asked what was the one thing that had surprised them both about Edinburgh. That was easy – they both agreed that they were pleasantly surprised by how friendly the people are here and also by how good the public transport is in the city. We then had a laugh about how this compares to Naples, where, famously, driving around the city in a car can be very exciting indeed!
They are keen on cooking from scratch and have found no problem getting all the fresh ingredients they need here, but did say that the diet in Scotland is very different from what they were used to at home. However, they had both tried and enjoyed two Scottish ‘delicacies” – haggis, our famous national dish, and Scotch eggs, which are hard-boiled eggs, wrapped in sausage meat, covered in breadcrumbs and then deep-fried. Eaten hot or cold, they are very tasty.
One thing which Brunella mentioned that was very interesting (and true) is that she found that reading recipes and cooking instructions on food she’s bought in the supermarkets here has helped her considerably to improve her English.
She has a degree in Spanish and Arabic, and she studied English at school in Italy, so she is clearly good at picking up languages. Alessandro had not studied English at school, but had done so at university in Naples, and his English too was very good.
When asked about the School, they both said that it was really good. “It’s fantastic – I really like my teacher,” said Brunella, and Alessandro agreed, explaining how the teachers “don’t just teach English but also often accompany students on activities and trips and tell you about Edinburgh and Scottish history.” He also praised Helen, who is the ‘go-to’ person for all students with almost every query you can imagine!
Finally, we talked about the entertainments, sport and leisure activities in Edinburgh. They have visited most of the monuments and galleries, and Edinburgh Castle of course, and have also seen Scottish football (not as good as Napoli, their local team, they said!) and international rugby on the television here. They enjoy other sports – Alessandro has a lot of experience in Tae Kwon Do, while Brunella enjoys going to the gym. Overall, they are really enjoying their experience here in Scotland and their English has improved considerably as a result of attending Global School.