It’s hard to believe that just two weeks ago I was leaving London and ending one of my biggest adventures – studying abroad. Once I returned home I meant to write a description of the second half of my vacation with Dani, and wrap up this blog for good. Unfortunately winter break and being home got the better of me, and I never got around to writing that post. I’ll do my best to give some insight into the last leg of our trip in Rome, Florence, Venice, and finally London, as briefly as possible (mostly for my own sake!).
Rome was incredibly superstitious, between praying to God we would make our flight after being stuck in hours of traffic leaving Paris, being pooped on my a bird (good luck), and tossing our coins into the Trevi Fountain, which ensures the person who throws the coin in will return to Rome one day (true fact – I threw a coin into the fountain on my previous trip to Rome!). We also enjoyed an amazing multi-course Italian Christmas dinner filled with various types of fish (not sure if there’s a superstition associated with this, or if it’s just customary). Dani and I also went to an incredibly fancy restaurant for dinner one night, by accident, and were laughed at by the waitstaff the whole time (ok, that story doesn’t have anything to do with superstition, it was just really funny). Additionally we visited Vatican City and the Colosseum, in addition to some other major sites.
On Christmas day we traveled to Florence which was beautiful! El Duomo, an iconic cathedral covered in pink, green, and white marble, was only blocks away from our hotel. Dani and I, on our quest to see as many major pieces of Eastern art as we could also enjoyed the numerous museums in Florence with works like Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus, as well as Michelangelo’s David. One of the best things we did in Florence was walk to the Piazzale Michelangelo, a plaza on top of a hill overlooking the city. It was a nice walk, through a residential neighborhood, then past a small garden, and the views were amazing! We also had one of our best dinners in Florence, eating Tapas style at two different wine bars like real Italians. At one location we enjoyed a plate of meats and cheeses with crunchy bread, and at another we had amazing raviolis! Each spot paired wine with our meals, making the experience that much more fun!
While it’s hard to pick a favorite destination from my trip with Dani, Venice may be the winner by a hair. I love the small streets and canals that create the city. The water taxi’s were frustrating at times (especially when people gave us well intended – but incorrect – directions) and the pigeons in Piazza San Marco were disgusting, but overall it was just such a unique city with so much character. We also visited Murano, a small island off of Venice, and saw a fascinating glass blowing demonstration!
For the New Year we returned to London where Dani and I visited the major sites – Parliament, big ben, Buckingham Palace, the Tate Modern and of course Harrods! Dani and I had the best time wandering around the giant department store gushing over the luxurious items on sale. Our favorite part was picking out various home goods to furnish our imaginary apartment. Dani and I also enjoyed a traditional afternoon tea and spent New Years in an Irish pub (No matter where you are in the world there will always be an Irish pub).
After two weeks traveling it was time to go home, and I was definitely ready to return, but it was bittersweet saying goodbye to such an amazing semester. Having the opportunity to travel, especially with some of my closest friends like Dani, Sarah, Paige, and even spending time with my mom and dad in Europe, was amazing. I also learned so much from my internship, and I’ll always be grateful for that experience. I met such amazing people and had such an amazing time, I just can’t gush about my experience in London enough! Today was the first day of classes for the Spring semester at BU and I feel like I’m starting this semester with so much more knowledge and a wider understanding of the world, and it makes me even more appreciative of my semester abroad.
Here’s some of the pictures from my trip with Dani: