I apologize for not keeping up with this blog!!! School has been crazy. Anyways, I will update you with what I have been doing. In the beginning it was so relaxing here in Rome, before all of the craziness of school began. There was a night where all of the graphic design students got together on the Spanish steps and just talked and talked for awhile and drank some wine, it was so much fun to sit back and relax and enjoy eachother's company. Afterwards we walked around a bit and checked out the Trevi fountain at night, which is remarkable, it's quite the tourist attraction, which takes away from it, but I could just stand there and stare at the fountain forever dreaming about never leaving Rome...it is so romantic (I wish I could have seen it with you Blaine, haha). This night seemed to never end as one of the girls met a guy named Alfredo that has a dancing role in a moving that is coming out called "When in Rome" and he told us to find this dance club...so we checked it out. It was crazy! Very cool, but I felt like I was surrounded by the rich and famous of Hollywood or something, I was definitely out of my zone. We didn't stay there much longer than 20 minutes or so before we made the long treck back to our apartment. The next day we went to a beach that is outside of Rome. The name of the beach is Ostia Lido...very pretty. According to Italians they don't consider much of this beach, but just a place to get away to on the weekends, but to me, an Iowan who doesn't have beaches, it was gorgeous :) We had such a great time at the beach we went there again a few days later. Within the next week we did a lot of exploring throughout the city, which was great. For class we were told to go on a scavenger hunt and to document places by taking photos. I roamed around (haha get it?) with Becky and Karen, two of my roommates, and we tooks 7 hours to do it, but we also went into a few stores here and there. One of the reasons we were asked to do this scavenger hunt was for a project, we were to find a location that stuck out to us that we would like to sketch at, in which we found interesting, that we would like to design an identity for. I chose Campo di Fiori. Campo di Fiori is really great...it's an area that is filled with an open market everyday except Sunday in the mornings and early afternoons and then the spaces becomes a social space, full with people of every age eating, drinking, and talking. It is a great area to be in.
Moving on...my first weekend trip was to Tuscany! I went with Laura, another friend and roommate :) We had a ball. Our first stop was to Grosseto. Whoops, was that a mistake! That was definitely my fault, I had found online all of these great things about Grosseto, and how it was so pretty and what not...well, that must be in the country side, because the city was grungy. We stayed in the town for not much longer than an hour to catch a train to Siena :) Siena was BEAUTIFUL! So quaint, yet full of life. We both loved it! The streets were windy and we had a ball shopping our hearts out, even though we didn't anything, but a couple scarves. For dinner we ate a cute restaurant that served us a plate of goodies for free as an appetizer (that was nice!) poor Laura couldn't eat any of it, but the cheese because she is Celiac. I got spicy salami pizza and Laura got an omelet, we both split a half liter of their house red wine. After dinner we walked around a bit, got gelato, which was the best I have yet!!!! I got half cafe (coffee) and half pistachio...delic! Then we stopped in a little, cute bar. There weren't many bars that we saw in Siena. We both had drinks and then went back to our hostel, which was more like an apartment, and got up early the next morning to take pictures around town. We waited around a bit until noon for our train to Florence and rode that for a couple hours. Right away we dropped off our backpacks at the hostel (which was amazing, I highly recommend Plus hostel) and went out to explore. We had a lot on our to do list, not to mention a lot of shopping to do! There were a lot of markets so we hit those up, which was fun, we got to barter :) Laura ended up with a new leather purse the first day, haha. We both fell in love with tons of scarves, they were amazing. After our detour we went to see the David! It was breathtaking, truly. I had no idea he was that large and that perfect. Seriously, it's amazing. The sculpture is so beautiful, we were both in awe. There were also sculptures from Michaelangelo leading up to David that were never finished and get this...they were all laying among ruble until 1860 (or something close to that year)....isn't that crazy?! After the museum we explored some more, saw the Duomo, which was beautiful to say the least, and then grabbed some dinner right across from it so we could oo and awe :) I got the dinner combo of a salad, lasagna, and a glass of house red wine for 9 euro, I thought that was a great deal! After dinner we took a bottle of wine to the famous bridge on Florence that you always think of the Ponte Vecchio, and just sat back and people watched and talked. The next day we went on a wine tour in Chianti wine region, which was incredible!!!! Karen and Becky also joined us for the tour as they were also in Florence for the weekend! The vineyards were beautiful and picture perfect. We got to cut grapes from the vine, all while seeing villages in the distance, truly magical. They fed us and gave us plenty of wine, believe me! We had a blast! When we got back into Florence we rushed back to the markets to look at the leather once again, you see we had been told that Florence is the place for leather. I had been contemplating getting a weekender bag, but I'm so cheap that it took me forever to decide, finally I gave in and I got it! I love it and it makes me think of my grandpa because I always use his old leather weekender bag :)
This coming weekend we are going to Assisi with school and then when we get back the 7 of us from our apartment are going to Cinque Terre! I cannot wait, Cindy always talks about Cinque Terre so I'm excited to see what it's all about!
I will keep you posted with how the trip goes....love Carolyn!