There are two main reasons I chose to take Italian: family history and the desire to go to Italy. Unfortunately I cannot say much about the first. From what little I (and my parents) know is that my grandfather on my dad’s side was full Italian, thus we have the last name of Lago. I do hope to dig up more information about him in the future. But because Italian is in my blood, I wanted to learn it (and by that logic I should be taking German and Polish too but that’s for another time).
As for travel, Italy has always been one of the places I wish to see before I die. It has such a vast history to it and an interesting culture that I feel it would be great to see where it all came from. I’m not an extreme artsy person, but the art in Italy is one of the main attractions for me. The architecture, the paintings, the statues, and just the cities in general all have a whimsical look to them (and I’ve only seen pictures). Another reason to go would have to be the food. I don’t think that needs much explanation. I have grown up with the Italian food that my grandmother used to cook for my grandfather. They might not have been the “fancy” foods but they were the real, homemade foods. And nothing beats spaghetti with fresh-from-the-garden sauce!
I feel that I have somehow worked my way language-wise toward Italian. The first language class I ever had was Spanish in 8th grade, which was easy to pick up but at the time didn’t properly keep my attention. In high school I took three years of Japanese because of my (then) current obsession with the culture. (So I apologize in advance if I start speaking Japanese in class instead of Italian). And before this year I took Latin in my senior year of high school. So it feels like I have made a loop. It is in no way a bad loop! Because of the little Spanish and Latin I had I am used to the idea of conjugation and gender-based words, and the Japanese language has some strangely similar ways of pronouncing certain letters such as the double letters in Italian. All those other languages can only help me learn Italian.