Ciao Amici! I’ve made it safely to Rome after a very long trip. My apologies for not blogging more previous to leaving, but I was just spending time with family and trying to get as much done as I could! I did most of my packing all in the day that I left in hopes that I wouldn’t forget anything (failed, I forgot mascara so far…) so it was a very stressful day. I flew out of LAX, so Mom, Dad, Nana, and I went to Paul Martin’s for dinner, and then for the fateful drop off. It was difficult to say the least, our little group is pretty tight. I cried and promised I’d come back (it’s on the record now).
The flight was relatively simple, as simple as 14 hrs of travel can be. Was delayed in Zurich, but it was okay because we were on the plane and I was already asleep. Took the train to the main station in Rome, and then a taxi from there to the apartment. I am staying with a couple called Rebecca and Federico (Freddie). They are about my age and very nice. My room is very large with probably a queen size bed equivalent; comfortable, but no where near my dream bed that I left at home (I miss you my darling!). Its pretty far outside of town, but on a really great bus line and about a 5-10 minute walk from a Metro station so it’s well connected.
I read an article on how to make sure you don’t have horrible jet lag, and it said to try to switch to their time as soon as possible, instead of constantly comparing it to your own time and what your body wants to do. I wasn’t supposed to sleep on the plane, but screw that, but I was able to go to bed at a somewhat normal time. I slept in until about 10, which is decent considering. So hopefully I’m on Rome time at this point.
After getting ready and having a small breakfast, I walked around, wandering for about 4 hours. I honestly saw a ton of stuff, but didnt really stop to take pictures or anything so I couldn’t tell you what they were. After that, I was having a bit of culture shock I think, so I came back for siesta. I think all countries should get to take naps mid-day. Took the bus back to the city center, and enjoyed a nice glass of vino rosso and an ortolana pizza (vegetable- eggplant, zucchini, and mushroom). I ate at kind of a touristy trap place in Piazza Navona, but that’s okay, I needed to hear some English, and seriously, you’re paying for the view.
Eating dinner for one is always a little bit weird, but like I said, you’re paying for the view. My mom suggested I bring my journal instead of a book, because according to her (Google’s) advice, a book means you are standoffish, while a journal or magazine still shows you are open for conversation. I actually never took out my journal due to the above view, but I know I will at some point. I met a college aged girl and her dad at dinner, they are from Indiana and she is here to study abroad. After explaining what I was doing out here, the dad gave me his business card and said he has a friend up in Florence that he could inquire about working on some wineries.
After that, I walked around a bit some more. I was near where our apartment was last time, so I took some comfort in familiar places and laughing over some old inside jokes, even went to the supermarket we used to go to. Bought a couple bottles of wine and a Kinder Maxi chocolate bar (pretty much every girl who has been here with me knows and shares my affinity for anything Kinder or Haribo), and now I’m enjoying the wine and the chocolate while sitting in bed writing this post.
I’m still dealing with the idea of not getting to see my family for awhile, but I think I would feel like this even if I had just moved to another city. My Italian is HORRIBLE, but I’m hoping that falls into place as I get more settled and more immersed. I don’t remember it being this hard in the past, maybe I’ve finally crossed over to where you brain starts to melt away instead of grow.
Tomorrow all of the guests of the house are taking a pasta making class with Rebecca, so I will be joining in that, which is good, I found the hardest part of my day not having a plan or any idea really of what to do.
Also, a hint to anyone who plans on visiting Rome– I’m pretty sure it’s one of the loudest cities in the world. I’m outside of the City Center, meaning its a bit quieter, but as I write this there is a crowd of men outside yelling and laughing and beating on something (a trashcan lid) and its 11:30 PM. This morning, a car alarm went off for about a half hour. BRING EARPLUGS!! I did and I slept like a baby. You can thank me later.