Mattea Cumoletti

Mattea Cumoletti is a graduate student at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, studying human security, conflict resolution, and issues of forced migration. Upon receiving her BA in history and anthropology from the College of the Holy Cross in 2012, she spent a year in Southern Italy as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant, after which she worked at the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants in Albany, New York. As an advocate for resettled refugees, Mattea engaged in self- sufficiency services, job development and community outreach and integration. Prior to coming to Fletcher, she worked for a New York Medicaid reform project, which directly improved health services and benefits for beneficiaries, including the local refugee population. At Fletcher, Mattea is a Teaching Assistant for undergrad history and sociology, and she serves as a senior Web Editor for Fletcher's online academic journal, as well as Co- Chair of the European Club. After her fellowship, Mattea wrote: "AP gave the chance to work in the heart of one of the most pressing international issues of this generation, and there is no better way to understand the depth and complexities of the refugee crisis than from working with and listening to the people who are going through it."

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things

13 Jun

I got a lot of great feedback on my previous blog post (thanks mom), but also a suggestion that I go for shorter, more frequent posts rather than my typical weekly novella. Point taken (though I am a terrible self-censorer so no promises). So I wanted to pop in a little micro-blog to precede further reflection on the work I’m doing with the GFR, and naturally I decided to do this in song. Please read the lyrics below to the tune specified, and don’t forget to check the footnotes (yes my song has footnotes). In fact, I’ve included a simply marvelous audio version of myself singing, which I am quite sure will be enjoyable to all, as I have been often told since childhood (by the voices inside my head) that I have true vocal talent.

My Favorite Things About Athens

(To the tune of “My Favorite Things” from The Sound of Music)

Take away coffee’s a really big thing here
It’s actually decent and so is the Greek beer
There’s AC and wifi and towels in my house—
No, geckos, rats, scorpions not even a mouse! *

People are friendly and understand English
The pastries I’ve eaten make my top 10 food list
Comfort’s in style and clothing is cheap
My wardrobe has doubled just in the first week!

When there’s BO
On the metro
And I’m feeling sad
I watch old ladies ‘round me make signs of the cross**
And then I don’t feel so bad!

*This is in comparison to the apartment I lived in for a year in Lecce, Italy, where it was equally as hot but without blessed AC, the wifi I tried to steal from my neighbor’s apartment never worked, and yes there was a scorpion on my rug once and I spent a whole night chasing and mercilessly murdering a poor little gecko with ant spray.

**I couldn’t fit the whole explanation into the song, but I had been noticing that on the metro many of the little old ladies would do the Orthodox sign of the cross three times and end it with a kiss (I saw some burly dude doing it too) and it took me a few rides to figure out that they would do it every time we stopped at two particular metro stops—Aghios Nikolaus and Aghios Eleftherios. “Aghios” means “saint” in Greek, so they do it every time we stop at a saintly metro station! It always makes me laugh when I see them do it, and helps distract me from focusing on the more pungent passengers.


Posted By Mattea Cumoletti

Posted Jun 13th, 2016


  • Elyse

    June 13, 2016


    Mattea, I am so proud of your courage. I am in awe of your heart. I loved the song, and I cannot wait to hear more about your incredible adventure. I count myself among your biggest fans because I know that you are, and will be, doing great things in life. Eat some Greek pastries for me. I wish I could come visit!!! All my love, Elyse

  • Eleanor

    June 13, 2016


    Mattea you are always my best entertainment of the week and I mean that in a positive way. You make me laugh with your humor, make me ponder with all the insight I get from your experiences and make me sad learning of the unfortunate experience of the refugees. I appreciate your sharing. Keep up the good work. It is opening up the eyes of many people who have no idea what is really going on with the refugee situation.

  • Paula

    June 14, 2016


    I am enjoying your Blog and your latest talent with your song! Keep it coming..

  • Ai Hoang

    June 24, 2016


    This is the best! You’re awesome. Also, loving your Intagram posts, Mattea.

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