So...this past week has been very busy! Last Tuesday was my friend Rachael's birthday so we went all out for that day! We woke up at the crack of dawn to surprise her with breakfast and stayed up all night (I'll get to that in a bit). During the day we had class: Art History at the Borghese Gallery, within a beautiful, huge park in Rome. Turns out, Rome has a LOT of green space. It probably takes about a half hour to walk across the park. It's definitely one of my favorite places in Rome. Because it's a typical Art History class, we get lectured on Michelangelo and Raphael's paintings, which is pretty awesome! Sure, I'll memorize that! After that class we had to bus across town for two hours on Roman public transportation. Their buses are always packed and hot, and the capacity is "one more! one more!" We overheard some Americans sum up the bus system nicely the other day: "You wait for the bus for an hour and a half, ride the bus for an hour and a half, then walk home for an hour and a half." Yup. Pretty much our life. We finally arrived and grabbed food at an overpriced vendor then we ran into our teacher who told us to go into a church to see the footprints of Jesus. What!! I basically dropped my sandwich and my food fell out of my mouth (not really) while I ran inside the church. It WOULD be like Rome to have a random church hold the preserved footprints of Jesus. So random. After that divergence, we went to the San Callisto Catacombs to see the tombs and bones of persecuted Christians for class
. Then...we bussed back into the center of Rome for our PIZZA & GELATO CRAWL! Just like it sounds, all 30 of us trekked to different pizza places to try many kinds of pizza. Then we went to a gelato shop which had hundreds of flavors!!! Yummmmmy! Carbs + sugar = happy Katelyn. After that, we got back to our apartment (12 hours later) and immediately put on our togas for a Toga Party!!! And by togas, I mean bed sheets. We so fancy. It was great fun surprising Rachael and going out to sing karaoke and walk around town! We throw fun parties!!!! So that was all Tuesday. Craziness, I know!
The rest of that week wasn't so crazy--I just went to classes and did homework :) Friday we went on a Wine Harvesting Day Trip, which was great! We picked grapes at a vineyard and got a tour as well as got a long, huge delicious lunch tasting the wine we had helped create! On Saturday I took a day trip with 3 others (Molly, Heather, and Cole) to VENICE! A dream come true!!! It is about a 4 hour train ride from Rome so it isn't that far. We arrived and immediately pulled out our cameras upon arrival. The town was so picturesque. Don't worry, I only have 500 pictures of the same scene: colorful buildings lining the canals, with a bridge not too far down, and some boats (gondolas!) of course! We got off the train and literally wandered around Venice, not looking at the map at all. We shopped, which was fine with Cole as long as he had some pizza hahaha. Venice is known for it's masks--the famous Venetian carnival--and Murano glass
. It was a fairly relaxing day, with a visit to St. Mark's where we fed the pigeons, and some food and sitting. In the afternoon we took a GONDOLA ride!!!! It was a dream come true. We had some wine, and saw the city from a beautiful perspective! I was definitely feeling the romance with my 3 other passengers ;) It was a greatttt day! We took the night train home, which was an experience. I slept most of the way, but it wasn't very restful. Once we got home I easily decided to sleep and stayed asleep for 7 hours...until 2pm the next day! It was an easy decision since I was trying to get over a cold. Sunday night we did the biggest cultural immersion we could do in Roma: go to a SOCCER GAME! The fans here are die-hard, and we got to see that up close and personal. To put it in perspective, it's like Tommie-Johnnie times 1000. The noise was ridiculous before we even got in the stadium. Once we got in we heard and smelled smoke bombs. It was packed, and we struggled to find our seats. Romans are used of sitting wherever there's room, so we had to show them our ticket to get our seats. They immediately started singing their cheers, holding up scarves and waving huge flags. The spirit they have for their team is ridiculous! We were expected to win the game, but when we scored so soon, we were certainly surprised! The fans went WILD! A couple of our girls were pummeled to the ground and have bruises because of it. They hug and scream and jump and kiss and hit! It's indescribable! It was a realllly fun game! :) So that about sums up my crazy week! Now I have other crazy things to do...like study! I'm sure I'll have more adventures to share quite soon. :)
Currently I'm deciding to blog as a homework break...and I'm really forcing myself to do this because I deserve to. Right?! I'm feeling a bit stressed out with finals coming up. We have an Art History final next week that I've hardly studied for, and papers to write and other classes to study and read for! That plus the fact that we only have 2 weeks left in Rome so everyone is making their to-do lists of what we still have to do to live it up to the fullest! It's hard to really put it in perspective. What are my priorities? Did I come here to study or travel and explore? It's not like the decisions at school where I decide whether or not I want to go to the comedian or football game. It's deciding whether I want to go to Venice or a Papal Mass. It's hard to complain about these opportunities I have, but the mentality is to take advantage of everything--which is impossible. The pressure is undeniable. Looking back, I am proud with the decisions I've made thus far. I feel like I've really experienced and enjoyed Roma