Amalfi Coastin’

So on Thursday, Lane and I were supposed to go to our program director, Milva’s, apartment for a cooking session. We were leaving for the Amalfi Coast that night, so we lugged our bags and walked over to the train station, to where we thought we would catch the bus that would take us to Milva’s apartment. Well…we were wrong. Turns out Piazza San Marco isn’t near the train station. We went the complete wrong way. So at this point, we were running late, we were super hot since it was hot and we were carrying our bags through Florence. So we called Milva and told her there was no way we would make it on time and that we were so sorry that we had to miss this. We were seriously so upset! It would have been so fun and we were looking forward to cooking with Milva. Lane and I grabbed some salads at the cafe on our corner and then went back for a couple hours before we had to meet with the Bus2Alps group to leave for Amalfi.

Lane and I left our apartment at met up with the group at 7:30PM at the train station. We met up with Meghan, Katie, Merel, and Sari there. There were a lot of other people that I am friends with that happened to be on the trip too which was a good surprise. We got on the bus, and we were off. The drive was about 7 hours and we had a 45 minute stop at a rest stop along the way. We got to “Seven Hostel” (the hostel that we all stayed at) at around 3:30AM and we were supposed to wake up very early to meet the group at 7:15AM. I barely slept. I probably fell asleep at around 5:00AM and woke up at 6:00ish.

We ate breakfast at the hostel, and then walked about 30 minutes to get on a big boat to Capri. All the Bus2Alps groups met at this point (the other trips from Florence and the trips from Rome). Tyler and Tim were on the trip from Rome (Sklare and Matt’s friends and roommates in Rome), so we got to hang out with them which was fun. We all went up on the top of the boat to be outside. It was so beautiful. We then transferred to a smaller boat where we were able to split into groups of 5 to enter the Blue Grotto, one of the seven wonders of the world. It was unbelievable. We took a tiny little paddle boat in to the grotto and had to bend down on our way in because the cave was so close to the sea level. Inside was pitch black, and the sunlight that came in from the cave hole was the only source of light. The water was a vibrant blue color. The sand on the ground was white which made the color even more vibrant. We were in the grotto for about 5 minutes, a short little visit. After the grotto, we got back on to the bigger boats and set out for Marina Grande, on the island of Capri. We walked up to the top of the hill, along Via Krupp, a 30 minute uphill steep walk, and then walked around for a little and took photos on the terrace. The walk up was pretty brutal. We were all sweating and it was so long!

The view up on the hill was amazing. So beautiful. The south of Italy is known for their lemons, they are HUGE. They are as big as an adult head. Not joking. They have these juice drinks called “granita” which is a lemon slush. They have a bunch of different flavors. You can have just lemon or you can have blood orange, melon, mint, etc. I got the lemon and blood orange juice. Oh my god. It was so fresh. Unreal.

After walking around and taking some photos, we walked to Capri Town and took buses up to Anacapri. The Bus2Alps leaders pointed us to a place where you can try limoncello shots (Capri is known for their limoncello) and order custom made sandals. We tried the limoncello, and passed on the sandals. I’m not really a limoncello fan, but I could taste the deliciousness of the lemons. We were really hungry at this point so we went to a restaurant right next door to the sandal/limoncello shop and we had lunch.

After lunch we wanted to lay in the sun, so we took the chairlift up to the top of Mt. Solaro. This was one of the coolest things that we did the whole weekend. The chairlift was individual seats that went all the way up to the top of the hill. The views were unbelievable. We saw Tyler and Tim at the top and made some new friends. We sat out in the sun for a couple of hours on the patio on the top of the mountain. I got a lot of sun. A little sunburnt actually. The mountain though was so cool. We were literally in the clouds. It was so high up. Clouds were LITERALLY passing by us, we could actually see them pass by. It was awesome. I was making jokes that I wasn’t getting Wifi even though I felt like I was in an “iCloud.” After a couple hours at the top of the mountain and taking some photos, we took the chairlift back down. The ride down was hilarious. We passed all these Asian tourists on our way down that were on their way up. They were taking photos of us and holding up peace signs for us to take pictures of them. I got some good pics of them.

When we were done with the chairlift ride back down, we caught a bus back to Capri Town. There was a Fiorucci store here, the clothing company that my mom used to work for, so I took a picture in front of the store. We then walked back down to get to Marina Grande and got a little lost on the way back down. But it was okay! Because we passed an absolutely gorgeous beach with clear blue water. The water was pretty cold, but Katie and Meghan ran in for a quick dip. We walked along the shore and met up with the rest of the Bus2Alps trip and sat on the beach for about another hour. After the beach, we caught a boat from the Marina back to Sorrento, where our hostel was.

We got back to our hostel, and showered and changed, and then met up with everyone and took a bus to the town of Sorrento (about 20 minutes) to have dinner and go out. We went to Pizzeria Aurora in Sorrento and then went to the English Inn, which was an outdoor beer garden which was fun and cool. Lane, Katie, Sari, and I split a cab home and went to sleep for the night.

On Saturday morning, we woke up, had breakfast again at the hotel, and then took a bus to Positano. The drive was about 40 minutes along the coastline of the Amalfi Coast. Really fantastic views. We got off in Positano, and then had to walk about 30 minutes downhill to the black sand beach. We hung out on the beach for the day. We laid out, got delicious sandwiches at this place called Vini e Panini. We laid out some more and went in the water. It was pretty cold, but it was really refreshing and the water was so beautiful. We had to wear sandals on the beach because it was so rocky and hurt our feet. At around 2:30PM, we took a boat to this small beach nearby where we went cliff jumping. Believe it or not, I did it. I am not adventurous at all, but, I thought, “When In Rome!,” but “When In Amalfi!” It was actually fun! I jumped off the low cliff, about 10 feet. The crazy people jumped off the high cliff, about 25 feet. Yeah…no.

We took the boat back to the beach and hung out for a couple hours and then took a bus back to Sorrento. On Saturday night, we just had dinner at our hostel and hung out there at night.

On Sunday morning, we checked out of the hostel, then took a bus to Pompeii. We entered into the ancient city, walked around, took photos, and then had lunch. We had lunch at this place called Pompeii Pizza. The pizza in Naples (the city near where Pompeii is) is supposed to have some of the best pizza. It really was delicious. We got another glass of lemon/blood orange granita and then got back on the bus for Florence. We got back to Florence at around 8:45PM.

The trip was great! So beautiful, so fun, and we got lots of sun! To be honest though, I think that Portofino was more beautiful. They had different vibes though. Portofino is more upscale and the Amalfi Coast was a little more “beachy.” I gotta come back one day! This week will be spent writing all my papers for my classes…blehhhhhhh!!!!!!

The group of 6 of us before taking the first boat to Capri.

The group of 6 of us before taking the first boat to Capri.

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On the boat to Capri. But then we moved upstairs to be outside.

On the boat to Capri. But then we moved upstairs to be outside.

Tim, Tyler, and me on the top of the boat.

Tim, Tyler, and me on the top of the boat.

Me, Meghan, and Merel. It was super windy outside on the boat.

Me, Meghan, and Merel. It was super windy outside on the boat.

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These boating men had to hold on to a rope and the bigger boat that we were in dragged them to the Blue Grotto. These were the little boats that we took into the Blue Grotto.

These boating men had to hold on to a rope and the bigger boat that we were in dragged them to the Blue Grotto. These were the little boats that we took into the Blue Grotto.

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The boats waiting to enter the Blue Grotto

The boats waiting to enter the Blue Grotto

Meghan, Merel, and me in the boat going into the Blue Grotto.

Meghan, Merel, and me in the boat going into the Blue Grotto.

This is it! The Blue Grotto ladies and gentlemen.

This is it! The Blue Grotto ladies and gentlemen.

Another shot. It's so cool.

Another shot. It’s so cool.

The Green Grotto. Not sure why there are so many different grottos.

The Green Grotto. Not sure why there are so many different grottos.

Katie, Meghan, Merel, Sari, me and Lane on the boat.

Katie, Meghan, Merel, Sari, me and Lane on the boat.

This rock formation is supposed to look like an elephant. The trunk is on the left. Can you see it?

This rock formation is supposed to look like an elephant. The trunk is on the left. Can you see it?

If you look carefully, there is a statue of a boy/man on top of this rock waving. You are supposed to wave back at him and by doing so, you are promising that you will one day return to Capri. You bet I waved!!!!!!!

If you look carefully, there is a statue of a boy/man on top of this rock waving. You are supposed to wave back at him and by doing so, you are promising that you will one day return to Capri. You bet I waved!!!!!!!

Granita stand

Granita stand. Look at the size of the lemons.

The color of these flowers is fantastic.

The color of these flowers is fantastic.

I thought this flower tree was so beautiful

I thought this flower tree was so beautiful

Since Saturday was Little 500 at Indiana University, we decided to celebrate with some Italian beers!

Since Saturday was Little 500 at Indiana University, we decided to celebrate with some Italian beers!

A beautiful view

Beautiful view

Gotta love the solo shots

Gotta love the solo shots

Lane and I

Lane and I

The most amazing juice that I have ever tasted.

The most amazing juice that I have ever tasted.

It's casual. Just a bus that says "Capri." This can't be real life.

It’s casual. Just a bus that says “Capri.” This can’t be real life.

Merel on the way up in the chairlift

Merel on the way up in the chairlift

View of the coast from the chairlift

View of the coast from the chairlift

The chairlift

The chairlift

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We were LITERALLY in the clouds. SO COOL.

We were LITERALLY in the clouds. SO COOL.

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Look how small the people look and they are in the clouds!

Look how small the people look and they are in the clouds!

Some of our new friends. Katie was friendly with them.

Some of our new friends. Katie was friendly with them.

Hi friend!

Hi friend!

Ah! No hands!

Ah! No hands!

Hiya!

Hiya!

She was by far the best.

She was by far the best.

Looking good!

Looking good!

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Amazing coastline of Capri!

Amazing coastline of Capri!

In front of Fiorucci! This is for my mom.

In front of Fiorucci! This is for my mom.

This water..........

This water……….

Docking in Sorrento

Docking in Sorrento after the day in Capri.

Sunset

Sunset

Meghan, Lane, and I at the English Inn in Sorrento

Meghan, Lane, and I at the English Inn in Sorrento

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Positano

Positano

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The walk down to the beach

The walk down to the beach

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Beach bums

Beach bums

This guy worked at the granita stand. He is rocking some American gear.

This guy worked at the granita stand. He is rocking some American gear. I thought this was hilarious.

Hillary Wiesel and I

Hillary Wiesel and I

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The boat to go cliff jumping. I kept saying that this was the spring break that I never had in Eastern Europe...

The boat to go cliff jumping. I kept saying that this was the spring break that I never had in Eastern Europe…

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Jurassic Park-esque

Jurassic Park-esque

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BlueBlueBlueBlueBlue

Cliff jumping

Cliff jumping

The beach in Positano

The beach in Positano

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Groovy backpack dude

Groovy backpack dude

Pompeii! The theater in the ancient city.

Pompeii! The theater in the ancient city.

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An ancient bath

An ancient bath

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The bodies in Pompeii were mummified by the volcano ash that destroyed the city.

The bodies in Pompeii were mummified by the volcano ash that destroyed the city.

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The most famous preserved body. This is a pregnant woman.

The most famous preserved body. This is a pregnant woman.

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Lane and I

Lane and I

Love the Mediterranean pine trees.

Love the Mediterranean pine trees.

Another granita stand. The lemons are HUGE once again!

Another granita stand. The lemons are HUGE once again!

It was time to go back home at this point.

It was time to go back home to Florence at this point.

My Favorite Week In Florence Thus Far

So this was definitely my favorite week in Florence. I was pretty productive, and just had a great time with great weather. So here’s a run down of the week.

On Monday, I met up with my mom’s past employee, Linda Sweeney. She was in Florence with her husband and son. Before I met up with Linda, I went to the Salvador Dali art exhibit. It was pretty cool. There were tons of sketches and sculptures. There wasn’t as much art as I expected though. It was a pretty small exhibit. I met up with Linda and her family after the art exhibit. I took them through the leather market and to the Mercato Centrale and then said goodbye. I had some time to kill before my class, so I went to the Leather School and looked around and then went to Santa Croce church. The church has wood ceilings which is really cool and Michelangelo is buried there. Then I had to go to class.

After class, I met up with Katie and we spent the afternoon at the Boboli Gardens at Pitti Palace. The gardens were beautiful! They are a completely evergreen gardens so it’s in bloom all year long. The weather has been fantastic this week. High 70’s, almost 80’s. We laid out all afternoon. Monday night, I met up with Jenna Cohen, Jenny Graff, Jenny’s two friends and Molly Weber (all AEPhi friends) for dinner at Il Profetta because Molly was visiting from Sevilla. It was great to see Molly! The food was absolutely delicious at the restaurant. Monday night, everyone went out to Yab and I ran into Eric Strumwasser, a friend from school.

On Tuesday, I woke up and went on a hike up to Piazza Michelangelo. It was so nice to just be by myself and take in Florence. I love this city so much and have appreciated it so much more in this weather. Then I had class and then I went back to the Boboli Gardens with Lane and Hillary Weisel. I studied for my Italian quiz and laid out. On Tuesday night, we had a mandatory dinner for my food and wine class that was in place of class that afternoon. We went to the restaurant Boccadama in Piazza Santa Croce. To be honest, the food was worse than what I was expecting. After dinner, I went to Jenna Mizzi’s apartment to meet up with Lena Baker and Kelsey Marks, our friends on Morale (our IUDM committee), who were visiting from Sevilla. They came back home with me.

On Wednesday morning, I took Lena and Kelsey through the leather market, to Mercato Centrale and then we sat on the steps of the duomo. We went up to La Rinascente, the department store, to get the good view of the duomo. Then I took them to meet up with Mizzi because I had class. I had Italian and then TV broadcasting. After class, I met back up with Lena and Kelsey and we went to meet up with Kelsey’s friends in her sorority, and Jess Rosen, who is also on morale with us, and Hillary Weisel and picked up sandwiches at Antico Vinaio (the best sandwich place) to bring up to Piazza Michelangelo to watch the sunset. It was so beautiful, and again I fell in love with this city and the view. After Michelangelo, Lena, Kelsey, and I just hung out at my apartment and they left early this morning (Thursday).

Today me and my friends are leaving for the Amalfi Coast which I am SO excited for. It’s going to be so gorgeous. We are going through Bus2Alps, the travel company. We leave tonight and take a bus. Like I said, this was definitely my favorite week in Flo so far! I love it here!

Dali exhibit. Melting clock statues.

Dali exhibit. Melting clock statues.

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Dali's ode to the Jews during WWII

Dali’s ode to the Jews during WWII

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Little statues

Little statues

Dali furniture.

Dali furniture

The inside of the building where the exhibit was.

The inside of the building where the exhibit was

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Linda and I in front of the duomo.

Linda and I in front of the duomo

The courtyard at the leather school

The courtyard at the leather school

Leather goods.

Leather goods

Students at the leather school.

Students at the leather school

Santa Croce church

Santa Croce church

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The wooden ceiling

The wooden ceiling

Michelangelo's tomb

Michelangelo’s tomb

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Santa Croce church from the outside.

Santa Croce church from the outside

Boboli Gardens

Boboli Gardens

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The Pitti Palace

The Pitti Palace

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Molly comes to Florence!

Molly comes to Florence!

Jenny Graff and I at Il Profetta.

Jenny Graff and I at Il Profetta

The "John Travolta" pasta at Il Profetta. So good.

The “John Travolta” pasta at Il Profetta. So good.

Molly and Dolly!

Molly and Dolly!

My roommates friends, Rachel Broder and Karly Stillman came to visit. Rachel and Karly are good friends with my cousin Jordan Aronovitz.

My roommates friends, Rachel Broder and Karly Stillman came to visit. Rachel and Karly are good friends with my cousin Jordan Aronovitz.

Rachel Heimberg, me, and Lane at Yab.

Rachel Heimberg, me, and Lane at Yab

The hike up to Piazza Michelangelo.

The hike up to Piazza Michelangelo

The view from the top.

The view from the top

Back to the Boboli Gardens! This time with Lane.

Back to the Boboli Gardens! This time with Lane.

Amanda Haas, me, and Stacy Chemtob at the food and wine class dinner.

Amanda Haas, me, and Stacy Chemtob at the food and wine class dinner.

Kelsey, me, Lena, and Jenna.

Kelsey, me, Lena, and Jenna

We spelled out "OMAM." OMAM means "Once Morale Always Morale."

We spelled out “OMAM.” OMAM means “Once Morale Always Morale.”

Lena was so excited to get a porchetta sandwich from Nerbone in the market.

Lena was so excited to get a porchetta sandwich from Nerbone in the market.

This is the best sandwich place in Florence without a doubt.

This is the best sandwich place in Florence without a doubt.

Prepare yourself for some beautiful scenic photos of Florence.

Prepare yourself for some beautiful scenic photos of Florence.

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Jess, Lena, Kelsey, and I. We're all on Morale together.

Jess, Lena, Kelsey, and I. We’re all on Morale together.

Lena and I. Friends since 1992.

Lena and I. Friends since 1992.

The duomo in the sunset. So beautiful.

The duomo in the sunset. So beautiful.

Loving our Antico Vinaio sandwiches.

Loving our Antico Vinaio sandwiches

The group watching the sunset at Piazzale Michelangelo.

The group watching the sunset at Piazzale Michelangelo

This is basically Florence in a nutshell...

This is basically Florence in a nutshell…

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Florence at nighttime. This could be a postcard.

Florence at nighttime. This could be a postcard.

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Hillary Wiesel and I

Hillary Wiesel and I

Indiana group shot

Indiana group shot

All of us.

All of us

Kelsey, Lena, and I on the Ponte Vecchio at night.

Kelsey, Lena, and I on the Ponte Vecchio at night.

Prahahaha (Praha – Prague in Czech)

So sorry this has taken a while to write. This past Thursday, I spent the morning in Florence and then met up with my friend Francesca (Fran) Lamberti who is in ChiO at Indiana and is studying in Florence and her friend Steph. We walked over to the train station and caught a train to Rome. From the Rome Termini station, we took another train to the airport (FCO). We got to the airport and got on our flight to Prague. The flight was pretty quick, we landed at 10:00PM-ish. We landed and got on a city bus to a metro stop where my friends Roni Grant and Jamie Fischer (both in AEPhi at IU) met us. It was so good to see them. Fran, Steph, and I all bought 3-day metro passes and Fran and Steph went with Jamie because Jamie’s apartment is right next to the hostel that Fran and Steph were staying at and I went with Roni back to her dorm, which is where I stayed. Roni and I just hung out and caught up and chilled for the night and went to sleep.

On Friday, Roni and I woke up, and got the free breakfast that is included in her dorm room at this little cafe down her street. While we were at breakfast, Roni introduced me to a friend of hers that goes to Boston College. She was with her friends who were visiting her that also go to BC. I asked if they knew my friend Margaux L’Herbette (one of my best friends from home) and one of the girls said that she was her roommate in Paris! Such a small world.

After breakfast, we walked around the area where Roni lives, Vyshrad. We saw the view from the fortress, a beautiful cemetery, a church, and Roni’s school. We also walked through this statue garden that is supposed to have “good vibes” and healing abilities.

After the walk around Vyshrad, we took a tram to meet up with Jamie, Fran, and Steph. We walked to Old Town with them and saw the astronomical clock, which is one of the oldest astronomical clocks in the world. We walked around Old Town Square and then walked to the Jewish Quarter. Fran, Steph, and I did the Jewish Quarter while Roni and Jamie just hung out. They didn’t want to do it because they’ve done it so many times. So the three of us went to the Maisel Synagoge, The Pinkas Synagogue, The Old Jewish Cemetery, Ceremonial Hall, The Klausen Synagogue, walked by the Old-New Synagoge, and lastly went to the Spanish Synagogue which was definitely my favorite. It was so different and so gorgeous inside. After the Jewish Quarter, Roni and Jamie scoped out this Indian restaurant where we ended up having lunch, called Indian Jewel off of Old Town Square, which was pretty good! After lunch, we walked across the Charles Bridge, but it was cloudy, so I told Jamie and Roni (my Prague tour guides) that I wanted to go back the next day since it was supposed to be nice the next day. After the bridge, Jamie, Roni, and I split up from Fran and Steph.

Jamie, Roni, and I met up with Russell Goldberg at Perrin. Russell is Casey Goldberg’s (my freshman year roommates and one of my best friends at IU) brother. Russell is studying in grad school in Prague for the semester. The four of us climbed up Petrin Hill halfway, but then had to take the tram for the second half because the hill is so steep and we couldn’t handle it. When we got to the top, it of course started to rain. There is an “Eiffel Tower” on the top of the hill that we took a photo of. When we got back down the hill, we got Trdelniks (that’s the correct spelling!) and hot mulled wine. Trdelniks are these traditional rolled sweet breads from Eastern Europe. We definitely got ripped off and over paid for the hot wine…

After our little snack, we went back to Roni’s apartment and got ready for dinner. Roni made a reservation at this traditional Czech restaurant for a big group of us, called U Knihovny. We were meeting up with some of my other Indiana friends. A lot of DZ’s were visiting for the weekend, and Joe Calhoun (who is studying in Prague) came with his roommates too. We met them at the restaurant at 8:30PM.

So the whole point of going to the restaurant was to eat traditional Czech food. I guess people in Prague eat dinner on the earlier side, and they ran out of Czech food by the time we had dinner reservations…so that was a huge bummer. The food and the beer was super cheap. Welcome back to Eastern Europe I guess.

After we were done with dinner, Roni, Jamie, and I went back to Jamie’s apartment to meet up with Allyson Roseman (our other friend who is studying in Prague and is in AEPhi) and her cousin who was visiting, Elizabeth. We went to U Sudu, this really cool underground bar, where we met up with Matt Sherman and Brian Meyer (IU friends studying in Prague). We went out after U Sudu to this club called Lucerna. It was “80’s and 90’s Music Video Night”, NOT JOKING. It was so fun. They were playing such good throw backs. Music was great. I saw my friend Mark Catanzaro (IU friend studying in Rome), whose nickname is Big Cat, at Lucerna which was awesome. After Lucerna, Jamie, Roni, and Jamie’s roommate Sophie, walked to Wenceslas Square and New Town Center and then we went home.

On Saturday morning, Roni and I met up with Jamie and Sophie at Bohemian Bagel, this bagel/breakfast place. We then walked across the Charles Bridge, took some good pics, and then went to the Lennon Wall. When I first came abroad, I expected the Lennon Wall to be huge, with all this graffiti. Everyone said that the Lennon Wall is so over rated and that it’s actually so much smaller than you expect it to be. Since I’ve heard this so many times, I thought it would be tiny, but then when I saw it, since I was prepared for it to be so much smaller than I thought, I was actually very satisfied with the size and not underwhelmed at all. Took a bunch of photos there and then walked over to these babies sculptures. The artist of the baby sculptures is David Cerney.

Then we took a tram up to the big castle and walked around there for a while. After the castle, we went and had lunch/dinner at a Thai restaurant called Noi. We stopped by the communist memorial statues on the way back home. On our walk back home, we ran into Russell Goldberg and he walked with us for a little bit. That night, Jamie, Roni, and I, met up with Allyson and Elizabeth for dinner at this Cuban restaurant. Since we ate Thai food so late though, we weren’t hungry at all, and just ordered an appetizer. After dinner, we walked around Old Town again, and then chilled at Jamie’s and didn’t end up going out.

On Sunday, Roni kindly took Fran, Steph, and I on the metro to the bus stop where we caught the bus to the airport. We were flyig from Prague to Rome and then taking the train from Rome back to Florence. Prague was definitely my favorite Eastern European country thus far. The architecture was amazing and it’s a really cool city in general! There were a bunch of familiar faces on our flight. So last Wednesday, my friend Dylan Sklare (studying in Rome), had a horrible accident and fell five stories down his apartment stairs. He broke his cheek bone, collar bone, arm, and tore a ligament in his leg. So he is in the hospital in Rome. Coincidently, Big Cat was on my flight, who is in Phi Psi with Sklare, and since we were flying to Rome, Big Cat and I decided that we’d go visit Sklare in the hospital. So I called Dylan’s friends and we met up with them and they took us to the hospital and we went to see Sklare for a few hours. He is doing a lot better now. We are so happy that he is alive. It was such a bad accident. After the hospital, I went to Roma Termini, the train station, and caught a fast train back to Florence.

The cemetery in Vyshrad

The cemetery in Vyshrad

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My favorite grave stone. This guy was a Czech comedian, so there is a sculpture of gesturing hands on the grave stone.

My favorite grave stone. This guy was a Czech comedian, so there is a sculpture of gesturing hands on the grave stone.

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Thought this door to the church in Vyshrad was so cool

Thought this door to the church in Vyshrad was so cool

The statues in the "good vibes" garden

The statues in the “good vibes” garden

Roni on the tram

Roni on the tram

All the buildings in Prague are so cool and colored

All the buildings in Prague have the best colors

Jamie, Roni, and I with the Charles Bridge and the castle behind us

Jamie, Roni, and I with the Charles Bridge and the castle behind us

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Old Town Square

Old Town Square

The astronomical clock

The astronomical clock

Old Town Square with Jamie and Roni

Old Town Square with Jamie and Roni

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There are gold plates placed on all the buildings where Jewish families were taken from their homes during WWII in Prague. The plate is on the ground right outside the apartment with the person's name who lived inside the apartment at the time.

There are gold plates placed on all the buildings where Jewish families were taken from their homes during WWII in Prague. The plate is on the ground right outside the apartment with the person’s name who lived inside the apartment at the time.

The old new synagogue. The oldest functioning synagogue outside of Israel

The Old-New synagogue. The oldest functioning synagogue outside of Israel

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The Maisel Synagogue

The Maisel Synagogue

Inside the Maisel Synagoge

Inside the Maisel Synagoge

Inside the Pinkas Synagogue

Inside the Pinkas Synagogue

Holocaust victims names are written on the walls of the Pinkas Synagogue.

Holocaust victims names are written on the walls of the Pinkas Synagogue.

Upstairs the Pinkas Synagogue, there are children's drawings from the Terezin concentration camp.

Upstairs the Pinkas Synagogue, there are children’s drawings from the Terezin concentration camp.

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The Old Jewish Cemetery. It contains almost 12,000 tombstones, but over 100,000 people are buried here. Jews weren't allowed to be buried outside the ghetto, so people were buried on top of one another, up to ten layers deep.

The Old Jewish Cemetery. It contains almost 12,000 tombstones, but over 100,000 people are buried here. Jews weren’t allowed to be buried outside the ghetto, so people were buried on top of one another, up to ten layers deep.

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Inside the Klausen Synagogue. It was the largest synagogue in the ghetto.

Inside the Klausen Synagogue. It was the largest synagogue in the ghetto.

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Outside Ceremonial Hall.

Outside Ceremonial Hall.

Inside the Spanish Synagogue. One of the most beautiful synagogues I've ever seen in my life.

Inside the Spanish Synagogue. One of the most beautiful synagogues I’ve ever seen in my life.

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With the Franz Kafka sculpture

With the Franz Kafka sculpture

Bride and groom in Prague

Bride and groom in Prague

Fran and I in Old Town Square

Fran and I in Old Town Square

Cool buildings

Cool buildings

Roni, Russell, and I walking up to Petrin Hill

Roni, Russell, and I walking up to Petrin Hill

Jamie, me, and Roni

Jamie, me, and Roni

Steep walk up the hill

Steep walk up the hill

Waiting for the tram to take up the second half of the hill

Waiting for the tram to take up the second half of the hill

The Eiffel Tower in Prague

The Eiffel Tower in Prague

Getting our Trdelniks

Getting our Trdelniks

Trdelnik and hot wine

Trdelnik and hot wine

Roni, Jamie, and I on the Charles Bridge

Roni, Jamie, and I on the Charles Bridge

View from the Charles Bridge

View from the Charles Bridge

Praha! Their city!

Praha! Their city!

Bright pink car. Love it.

Bright pink car. Love it.

Spooky old building

Spooky old building

Allyson, Elizabeth, and Jamie at U Sudu

Allyson, Elizabeth, and Jamie at U Sudu

Sophie, me, and Roni

Sophie, me, and Roni

Matt Sherman, Jamie, me, and Sophie

Matt Sherman, Jamie, me, and Sophie

Meredith Davis and I at Lucerna

Meredith Davis and I at Lucerna

Joe, me and Big Cat

Joe, me and Big Cat

Jamie, Roni, and me at Lucerna

Jamie, Roni, and me at Lucerna

The astronomical clock

The astronomical clock

On the Charles Bridge.

On the Charles Bridge.

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The ENTIRE Lennon Wall. Thought it was way bigger.

The ENTIRE Lennon Wall. Thought it was way bigger.

Our spidey senses are tingling

Our spidey senses are tingling

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Due from the Lennon Wall

Due from the Lennon Wall

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On the baby statues

On the baby statues

Modeling with the baby

Modeling with the baby

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Sophie and I on the walk up to the castle

Sophie and I on the walk up to the castle

In front of the cathedral at the castle

In front of the cathedral at the castle

Inside the cathedral

Inside the cathedral

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View of Prague

View of Prague

At the communist statue

At the communist statue

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Roni and I at the cuban restaurant.

Roni and I at the cuban restaurant.

Salsa dancing at the restaurant

Salsa dancing at the restaurant

Allyson, me, Jamie and Roni

Allyson, me, Jamie and Roni

Living My Life In Flo

Yesterday, I was super motivated to be a “tourist” in Florence and woke up early to go to the Ferragamo museum before class. It was raining, and of course when I got there, the museum was closed because they were installing the next exhibit and it doesn’t open until April 20th – fail.

Then I just killed some time, got a coffee, used some wifi and then went to art history class. We are learning about the Romanticism era and French artists right now. After art history, I had my pairing food and wine class. We made a pesto pasta with vegetables, a chicken and vegetable relish dish, and a chocolate cake. I made the pesto and helped with the pasta. Then last night, I went out to dinner with my AEPhi friends, Jenna, Allie, and Liza for my birthday since they weren’t here this past weekend. They took me out to dinner at Acqua al Due, which is known for their blueberry steak. It was delicious! Dinner was late, so I didn’t get home until around midnight.

When I got home, I had to book my train ticket for Rome for Thursday afternoon because I’m flying to Prague from Rome. I booked the ticket, paid online, and then when I looked at the date, I booked the wrong date. Go meeee!!!! So I panicked and looked up if it was possible to switch the train and everything. I emailed the company and asked them to help me. After emailing them, I explored the website some more and I figured out a way to change my ticket. But now I’m not sitting with my friend who I’m traveling with. Whatever. At least I am on the right train now and with no extra cost.

Recap of Last Week and I’m 21!!!! And Italian Soccer Match

We went back to school this week from spring break and we got our midterms back. Well I only got 3 out of 4 back so far, but so far so good! What a relief.

About two weeks ago my phone had been acting up and then I realized that my phone wasn’t sending iMessages from my phone number and they were only being sent from my Apple ID. I couldn’t receive iMessages that were sent my phone number either, so I was very frustrated that I couldn’t communicate via iMessage. Oh and to make matters worse, my Viber app wasn’t working anymore so I deleted it and reinstalled it, but I couldn’t reinstall it without having an activation code that was sent to your phone via SMS which of course I don’t have on my iPhone. The two of these things combined really stressed me out. So on Tuesday after my class, Sari met up with me and we went on a big adventure to the mall which was a 40 minute drive away. The bus there was easy. Really cheap, easy, but long. We got out of the bus and we were shocked by this mall. It was like real life civilization. So we went to the Apple store, had our genius bar appointments, and then left. It was 8:10PM. We went outside to wait for the bus and the bus never came…we waited for 45 minutes and nothing. So at this point we’re freaking out thinking we’re never getting home and we call our program director, Milva, and she told us that there should have been a bus, but there never was and we literally waited outside for 45 minutes. So we had to call a cab. We waited forever for a cab and finally we got home at around 11:00PM. The cab was so expensive. I was so angry and so confused about how the bus never came. After coming up with a solution to fix my phone, and talking to my dad, the phone was back to normal the next morning.

Wednesday night we had aperitif through Wells at the Savoy Hotel near Piazza Reupubblica. Aperitif is when you go and have drinks and appetizers with friends. Wells set it up for us so Lane and I met up with my friends Emily Clark, Jenna Mizzi, and Holly and we met the rest of the program at Savoy. It was a nice little gathering.

Thursday was just a chill day. Did nothing too exciting during the day. At night though, my friends and I celebrated my 21st birthday! So Sari, Merel and Zorn all came over to hang out with me and Lane before going out and then Stephanie Miller came over a little later too. When Steph came in, she said that she had a surprise for me, and in walked Jenny Siegel (one of my best friends that we were in Dublin with and is studying in Copenhagen). She came and surprised me for my birthday! I was sooo surprised. I had no idea! It was such a great surprise. So we all went out together that night which was fun.

Friday, the day of my actual birthday, Lane and I went to go get lunch at Antico Vinaio and we just walked around for a little bit. Jenny then came over and we hung out. That night, Jenny, Sari, Lane, and my two other roommates Amanda and Rachel went out to dinner to Trattoria Anita. They have really cheap and good pasta. My teacher told me about it. It was yummy! Then that night Jenny, Steph Miller, Lane, Sari and I went out to Kikuya and Babylon. I ran into Pauline Dora’s son, Lowell (the son of my boss at the store that I work at in New Canaan, Design Solutions) at Babylon which was funny. He is traveling around Europe for a semester.

On Saturday, I met up with Emily Clark, Holly, and Matt Andre (Giggles) and his roommate Coop, who I met in Vienna and Budapest. They came to Florence for the weekend. Matt wasn’t feeling well so he dipped out, but then Clark, Holly, Coop and I walked around during the day. It was so beautiful out. 65 and sunny. I got a name necklace on the street! It’s so cute. After walking around all day, Jenny met up with me and we walked around some more and then went back to my apartment and then we went out to dinner with Sari. We wanted to take Jenny to our favorite restaurant Il Giova, but they were all booked so we asked the people who worked there for a restaurant suggestion and they told us of this place called La Pentolla dell’oro. It was so delicious and authentic. We all just went home after dinner and I said bye to Jenny.

Today, we went the Florence vs. Milan soccer match. Lane, Sari, and I went down to the leather market this morning to get a Fiorentina TShirt to wear to the game. Meghan Keith met up with us and then we caught a bus to the stadium. I brought my big camera and the security guards were telling me that I couldn’t bring it in the stadium and that I had to leave it at some “belonging/coat check.” I told them no way and that I would rather just not go to the game because I wouldn’t risk losing the camera. I emailed Luca (one of the program directors, Milva’s husband), the day before asking if cameras were okay to bring in and he told me yes, so I told the people at the gate that I checked with my teacher before who told me it was okay to have my camera and that I even looked on the website and didn’t see anything about not bringing a camera in. They brought in this other security guy to look at my camera and he told me again that I wasn’t allowed to bring it in because it was too big and he told me again that I could check it in the lockers. I told him no. So then I called Luca and told him they weren’t letting me in, and he said to wait for him to get there and I was planning on just putting it in his car. While waiting for Luca, the security guy came back up to me and told me that he would let it slide and let me in. So lucky. So we went into the game, got our seats and watched the game. It was great! We had awesome seats and the game was so fun. The fans were heated and super into it. It was really cool. The score was 2 to 2. It was a tie. After the game, we didn’t know where to catch the bus, so we walked all the way back home, a 30 minute walk. It was really nice out today though, so it wasn’t too bad.

Had a great weekend, and tomorrow is just another Monday!

Jenny, Me, and Steph

Jenny, Me, and Steph

Me, Sari, and Lane at Kikuya

Me, Sari, and Lane at Kikuya

Lowell and I at Babylon

Lowell and I at Babylon

Clark and Coop modeling some bags

Clark and Coop modeling some bags

My new name necklace

My new name necklace

Holly and Dolly modeling their necklaces

Holly and Dolly modeling their necklaces

Clark got a name bracelet

Clark got a name bracelet

Jenny and I at Piazza Repubblica

Jenny and I at Piazza Repubblica

At the Fiorentia vs. Milan game!

At the Fiorentia vs. Milan game!

Lane and I at the game

Lane and I at the game

Steph Miller and I

Steph Miller and I

Meghan, Sari, me, and Lane

Meghan, Sari, me, and Lane

The stadium

The stadium

Lots of purple

Lots of purple

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MIlan scored

MIlan scored

Things were getting heated on the field

Things were getting heated on the field

Angry Italians

Angry Italians

 

The final score

The final score

 

End of the game. Look at the mountains in the back!

End of the game. Look at the mountains in the back!

 

View of the duomo on the walk back from the stadium

View of the duomo on the walk back from the stadium