Tuesday, January 26, 2010

To the Lady and Princess Island!

So last night was my first night out in Rome. And today I feel like crap, woohoo!! Anyway, last night was a great kick-off to the semester. I got to my apartment around 1pm, and I was the last to arrive. I am living with Bri, obviously, and then Julie, Emily, Mary Kate, and Brittany. We have a huge apartment. We each are in large doubles and then we have two bathrooms, a kitchen, and a living room area with a computer and phone. There is very strange art in the apartment, and our beds are tiny and remind me of beds you would buy for like a ski lodge or a lake house. Our comforters are also hideous, especially mine and Bri's. Haha they are reversible and the inside of ours has like teddy bears and stars and moons on it. For like a child. Very odd. The first thing I did at my apartment after unpacking was sleep. I like desperately needed a nap. As it turns out, Steve and Jack live very far away from us, but we do live close to Lindsay, and the Florianos/Lex/Nanditha/Maddie. After our nap we decided to meet up with the Florianos and crew and go to Le Fate Restaurant, because we had a 10 euro coupon in our welcome packet. For ten euro we got a full course meal including an appetizer, entree, dessert, and wine. We walked to the Florianos apartment, which was very different from our own and then we walked to Le Fate, which turned out to be not that close. It was like a 30 minute walk but we decided to walk because a) we should see what is around us and b) we have no idea how to use the public transportation system. Since it was such a long walk we ended up buying bottles of wine to have on the way there. We got to Le Fate and it turned out to be like a 20 person group so we all split up and sat at different tables. My roommates and I all sat at a table together. We ate bruschetta for the appetizer and then for the entree we had pasta with tomato sauce. It was so fucking good. The pasta was clearly home-made as was the sauce and it had freshly grated parmesan on top. Unreal. For dessert we got tiramisu which was the best tiramisu I have ever had. Chris loves tiramisu and now I can see why, although in the States it is not nearly as good. We also got a pitcher of wine for the table, and then bought another, which was not included in the 10 euro coupon so we did have to pay for that, but it was still a very good deal. The restaurant changes their menu every week and always have specials for students so I think we are going to make Le Fate a regular place.
After dinner we headed across town to the Campo dei Fiore, which is I guess near the Pantheon? We walked there as well which took about another 30 minutes but it was very cool to see the city. There were a lot of bars there and we ended up at "The Drunken Ship" which was clearly an American bar. Gia, Remy, and Sean all played some ruit and we got a couple pitchers of beer for our table. The bar closed at 2 so we didn't end up staying very long, but then we headed to another bar that was an Irish pub. They played some BC jams like "Shipping up to Boston" and "Sweet Caroline" which was fun for all of us to sing along to. Julie introduced me to this great drink called a Sour Amaretto that tastes like a Shirley Temple, and I tried an Italian beer that I can't remember the name of currently. We also met some "Irish blokes" there who I had my first tequila shot with, and yes I've never had a tequila shot before for the obvious reasons that it makes everyone crazy when they take it, but I figured I'd try it. It's pretty terrible. They give you lemons here instead of limes. Interesting. We ended up leaving the bar pretty late and took cabs back to our apartment. Instead of going to bed when we got home we thought it would be a good idea to open another bottle of wine which we then finished. My roommates and I are keeping a "drunk journal" to write in when we get home from wherever we have been that night, and I have no idea what I wrote in it but I do remember thinking that my handwriting looked essentially illegible. This morning I woke up around noon and proceeded to feel much too good so I knew I was still drunk. I sent a message to Chris and then threw up straight alcohol and what looked like a basil leaf. Really pleasant. I also talked with Steve and we plan on meeting sometime later today. I also took a shower, which was an adventure because I had no idea how to turn it on and had to ask Julie to help me. The shower pressure is crappy and its freezing when you aren't under the actual stream of water so I definitely miss my shower at home. Now its 3pm and I'm still in bed typing this and feeling like absolute shit from last night, so we'll see how today goes. I'm planning on going to campus today too so that should be fun, if I manage to function somehow.

Sitting in Heathrow

So I’m currently typing this on a word document because there is no free wifi in Heathrow Airport. Doesn’t that seem odd?? I mean Heathrow is one of the largest airports in the world and they don’t have free internet access? Very strange. When Steve went to Customer service to ask about it the woman at the desk said “That’s robbary you know, robbary” in a British accent (obviously). And yes I know robbery is spelled with an e. Anyways, I don’t know, I just find it weird. Steve and I sat next to each other on the flight, which was of course very enjoyable. Lindsay, Jack, Maureen, Jess, and Lex were also on the flight with Steve and I, although we were all spread out over the plane. We sat in coach on one of those huge planes, I had a window seat and Steve sat in the middle. For our meal we got the pasta, it was basically exactly the same as the manicotti that they serve at Lower sometimes. It was pretty tasty. They also had like vegetable cous-cous thing which was alright, I had a few bites but for those that know me I am not the biggest fan of vegetables. They also gave us a roll with butter and a very good dessert that I was quite pleased with. It was a blueberry lemon pound cake thing that was actually really good. I also got Chardonnay. Yay. We watched “Paper Heart” on the plane with Michael Cera and that strange girl from Knocked Up, I forget her name, I think its Charlyne? Anyway the movie was funny and cute but it was a documentary, so Steve and I couldn’t figure out if Michael Cera and Charlyne were actually dating in real life or if it was like acting for the “documentary.” Overall it was good though. After the movie ended Steve and I attempted to sleep but then started talking and then I was the only one successful at actually falling asleep. It was only for about an hour though. When we got close to landing Steve and I looked out the window to see if we could see any “sights of London” but it was a little too cloudy. Although Steve did say “Hey did you guys see Hogwarts when we landed??” to the group which was actually funny. It was also 5am London time when we landed, so it felt like midnight.
When we got off the plane we had to go through security again, which was annoying but the line moved relatively fast. I met a girl named Jackie who is also going to AUR. She attends American University in DC full-time and she is from Weymouth! We didn’t know any similar names though. Now myself, Jackie, Lindsay, Jack, Steve, and another BC kid Ryan are all sitting downstairs in a big open terminal area waiting for our gate to open. Steve is attempting to sleep but failing miserably, similar to how I have failed miserably to get onto the internet. Steve is now walking around to random people asking if they know football scores. Haha he hasn’t found anyone yet. I am actually getting hungry again so hopefully I can get some snacks on the second flight, that way I don’t have to pay for something here. By the time I post this hopefully I will be in Rome with internet in my apartment! Looks like our gate is scheduled to open in around ten minutes, so time to close the computer and get moving. When I post this I’ll be in Italy!!

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Packing is so annoying. I have everything I want to bring laid out on my bedroom floor, which took me a few hours, and although it doesn't look like its a lot on the floor, I know that as soon as I start to put things in suitcases it is just going to be miserable. So far I've planned to bring 3 pairs of jeans, 1 pair of khakis, 6 cardigans, 2 button-downs, 11 dresses, 18 "going-out" shirts, 4 pairs of leggings, 2 pairs of tights, 6 pairs of shorts, 2 swimsuits, 5 scarves, 3 coats, and 2 sweatshirts. That is not including a stack of basic tees/long-sleeves, camis, sleep shirts/shorts, undies, and socks. I'm not even going to attempt to count those. OH and shoes. I don't even know how I'm going to deal with those. I have a pair of flats, brown riding boots, black suede boots, sneakers, wellies, black close-toed pumps, black stilettos, brown high-heel boots, slippers, and 3 pairs of sandals. I was planning on wearing my sneakers on the plane but now for the sake of packing I honestly might wear my wellies. Who knows maybe it will be raining in Rome when I arrive in which case I'll be prepared/not look like a total weirdo.
I've been getting very antsy about leaving. At this point, almost everyone I know is already over there or is leaving soon, and I just want to get there! I wasn't feeling as mentally prepared maybe a week or two ago but now I definitely am. The lack of work hours I received this break (none) has really sucked and I find that I have no motivation to get up earlier than noon because I have nothing to do all day but pack, watch tv, or sit on the internet. Let's just say my interest in these activities has seriously waned over the course of my break.
In other abroad news I finally got my money situation figured out, but in the process everything that could have not worked in my favor did just that. I don't have an account at a major bank branch like Bank of America, so my ATM card would not work over in Italy despite the fact that it was under the Mastercard umbrella. Instead I had to get a AAA travel card that I can reload up with funds from my savings account. This will work great I'm sure. I was also planning on getting some traveler's checks, but was informed that traveler's checks are no longer sold in euro's because people in Europe refused to accept them. Instead I just got some euro's, and saw how incredibly shitty the exchange rate actually is. I knew it was pretty bad, but it's like half. Basically I'm going to have to be really diligent about budgeting my money, especially since I have made zero cash this break.
I got a haircut on Tuesday which I had some mixed feelings about at first but now I like it. The color is just a bit more blonde than I had expected, but whatever I suppose it will be warmer in Italy and the next season is spring. I also got my chipped tooth fixed yesterday at the dentist. I assumed they would just shave down the corner but instead they filled it in, so it looks like nothing happened to it.
My mom made shrimp scampi for dinner last night (my favorite) which was awesome, and tonight she made steak and twice-baked potatoes. Of course I like the twice-baked potatoes more than the steak because in general I've found that I like food that is worse for me...could come to bite me in the ass later in life, but I'm not thinking that far ahead at the moment. I think I'll take the shrimp scampi recipe to Italy with me, although I will probably want to just go out to eat instead of attempt to cook. For now I'm going to try to stuff all of these clothes into some suitcases, ha we'll see how that goes!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

First Post!

Hey everyone! First post woooo. Today is actually Chris's 21st birthday! He is currently abroad in Prague though so no celebrations with him. Hopefully I will be able to meet up with him in Europe soon enough. I leave Sunday, January 24th for Rome! I have a layover in London for a few hours on the morning of the 25th and I arrive in Rome around 11am. There are a lot of other BC students on the flight with me so that should be a great start to the semester abroad.
I have really nothing interesting to report in terms of my meals, I'm still at home for another few days and definitely enjoying my mom's cooking. I managed to chip my tooth last night when I went up to visit BC for the last time so right now I'm trying to watch what I attempt to chew until my dentist appointment on Wednesday.
Anyway that is all for now, this week will just be chock-full of packing and getting everything together for the trip, which I'm sure will be overwhelming. I'll update again when I leave for Italy!