Category Archives: Uncategorized

La Vie En Rose (Easter in Paris)

We took the Eurorail to Paris for Easter. Our hotel was gorgeous and only a few minutes from the Eiffel Tower. In fact, that was the first thing we did. Our afternoon consisted of climbing the stair to the second floor of the tower and seeing the Notre Dame. We were even there for Good Friday mass at the Notre Dame. I had been to Paris before, but seeing everything again gave me a new appreciation for it. On the second day, we spent all day at Versailles. The gardens were breathtaking and the last time was there I barely went exploring, so naturally we spent almost 5 hours outside exploring. We even found Marie Antoinette’s private little house, her garden and the best macaroons and hot chocolate I have eve had in my life. That night, I had escargot for the very first time. Yes, those are snails and yes, it was delicious. On Easter Sunday (AKA my sister’s birthday!! Don’t worry, we skyped and dI sent her a present. It’s all good!), We spent a good six hours at the Lourve, just wandering and taking it all in. I even got to see the Mona Lisa and Wings of Victory again. We also found the lock bridge that is this famous romantic spot. Basically, if you are in love you fasten a lock onto the bridge to symbolize your relationship. If it falls off into the Seine, that means your relationship will last forever. General note, it is hard to no believe in true love after seeing that sight of so many locks dedicated to the relationships that made people’s lives meaningful. Amazing. The next morning we got up and got some fresh fruit and pastries and ate breakfast in front of the Eiffel tour before having to go back to London. Overall, I’d say it was a pretty successful Easter weekend. 

Image

Image

Image

 

 

Cheers!!

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

How Irish am I? Well, I’d say it’s DUBLIN

A few weeks ago, I went to Dublin, Ireland. I loved it! It was really nice to be in a big city where literally everyone was SO FRIENDLY. I went exploring, crossed the Ha’Penny Bridge, went to the Guinness factory (where I even drank a pint in the Gravity Bar), went on an awesome walking tour of all of central Dublin, met up with some other flatmates who were were also in Ireland, went to the Jameison factory, found the leprechan museum, went to Trinity College, saw the Book of Kells (the oldest book in the world) and fell in love with the Long Room at Trinity College. Overall, a very successful two days in Ireland. I truly loved the city and the accents! Literally if you find an Irish person willing to talk to me or read out loud all day long…let me know. I’m in the market.

Image

Image

Image

(I didn’t take this because cameras are not allowed in the Long Room. However….sigh…)

 

Cheers!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

My City

A few weeks ago, my a few flatmates and I decided to finish off everything else on our London to-do list:

The British Library

Tate Modern Art Museum

Twinning’s 

Harrod’s (I know, I know I should have gone before the last week of march, but I have been busy!)

Portobello Road

Yes, we did all of these in one day. We started off with going to the Saturday morning market on Portobello road, then the British Library, followed by Tate Modern, crossed the Millennium Bridge, had a cuppa at Twinning’s and finished off our day at Harrod’s.

Portobello Road is incredible  and I highly recommend it to anyone. So cool and so much going on, but not like Camden or Spitalfield’s. It definitely had an energy all it’s own and has so much to see and do! I also got a really gorgeous watch, so check it out.

The British Library was unbelievable. I saw the Magna Carta, the original scrolls of the bible, the handwritten fragments of Jane Austen’s books and handwritten works by Shakespeare. This place is a gem and definitely something I would not have known about if one of my friends hadn’t said something. Also, they have a large portion of the gift shop devoted to Lewis Carrol and Alice in Wonderland. Loved it.

Tate Modern was built to look like a factory. However, modern art is not my thing. I can appreciate the art, but I don’t think it is my taste at all. That being said, it is still a cool experience and free. Both of which are always great. After that we crossed the Millennium Bridge, which was the one that was destroyed in Harry Potter. If you don’t know what I am talking about, then google it because you will definitely remember it when you see it.

Then we went to Twinning’s, a very famous tea company that literally makes the best tea I have ever tasted. Side note: the tea is so much better, I don’t know if I can ever really go back to liking tea from home. Sounds snobby, but if you have some you will realize it really isn’t. We even got to have a free cup of whatever kind we wanted. So amazing!!

Finally, we went to Harrod’s. I hadn’t been before that which I know is going to shock some people, but it’s very true. Also, I hadn’t heard of it before coming here so it’s didn’t seem like it was really that big of a deal. Harrod’s is a spectacle. Literally everything you could ever want is in the store all at remarkable highly prices. I do recommend checking it out just for the experience.

Some pictures from the day:Image

Portobello Road Market

Image

Guess what this place is…

Image

Tea Time!

 

Cheers!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Mussels in Brussels…and other things to do in Belgium

Hey Guys! Long time, no blog. I guess it’s time to make up for the last month that this page has been neglected. Well, here goes nothing….

On St. Patrick’s Day, four of us took the Eurorail (the train that goes under the English Channel)  to Brussels in Belgium. You’re probably like, “What is there to do in Brussels?” My answer: besides eating, not a whole lot. I really wanted mussels in Brussels…mostly because it rhymes and sounds like something out of a Dr. Seuss book. So, first thing we did when we got there was go eat lunch. After that we went exploring and found a cool out door market and some of the prettiest architecture I have ever seen! Then we decided to stop by a chocolate shop to test out some world famous belgium chocolate and it was awesome. I got some for my mom, dad and sister, so don’t worry guys you’ll get to test it out too! Then we walked around for a bit more and found the famous fountain of the little boy peeing. He was even dressed up festively for the occasion. Then we had a Belgian waffle for dinner. Did I mention we ate a lot? We totally did, but I mean, you’re only in Belgium on St. Patrick’s  Day for seven hours once right?

Image

Image

Image

(Please take time to note the little boy fountain urinating in the background. Happy St. Paddy’s Day everyone.)

Cheers!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Liverpool

I took a train to Liverpool to see what there was to see in this city I had heard so much about. Also, my friend Brian is studying abroad there this semester so I had a built-in tour guide. I had a great time catching up, seeing his campus and exploring all of the sights and sounds of Liverpool. Of course I made a stop by Penny Lane and Strawberry Fields, but there is a lot more to do than just Beatles stuff. Here are some of my pictures:

Image

Image

Image

Image

 

Cheers!!

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Oxford University

I visited Oxford as part of an FIE tour. Specifically, we went to St. Anne’s College and St. John’s College. Not a whole lot to say, but here are some pictures:

Image

Image

Image

Image

 

Cheers!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Surrey (Spring Break, Part Three)

When I got back (and had fully recovered) from the exhaustion that was Italy, I made a trip to Surrey to visit some (very distant and not-so-related) family. I went to see me Aunt Mary Jean’s sister’s sister-in-law and her family. Is that distant enough for you? I met Sarah, Murray 2/3 of their children (Zoey and Tom) and my aunt’s sister Julie and her daughter Hannah. It was really great to have a full family that was totally happy to have me impose on their lives and make me feel so welcomed. They were so incredibly sweet and it was really wonderful to meet them. They even took me to see my first British football game (Tom was the team captain of his football team at his secondary school so of course we had to go see him play)!! It was a fun day and I’m so happy I go to meet them. Hopefully, I will be able to meet up with them before I leave!

Image

Sarah and I on the football pitch

Image

Tom and his football team

Image

Murray and I at Tom’s school (St. John’s in Leatherhead)

 

Cheers!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Positano (Spring Break, Part Two)

For the next part of spring break, we headed to Positano, which is located in southern Italy. 

Monday:

Woke up in Rome and took the metro to the train station. We got on a train to Naples, which is sketch central and famous for having a lot of pick-pockets. Naturally, I was on high alert and I’m sure I looked ridiculous hanging on to the zippers of all my bags and jacket pockets. They probably didn’t pick my pockets because they were laughing at me. Anyways from Naples we took the metro to Sorrento and then a very long (very carsick) bus ride to Positano. At first sight, the sun had gone down, it was FREEZING and were all exhausted and starving. Not a great start to a vacation in a new place. We finally got to our rooms, had an absolutely amazing dinner, complete with pizza and Italian wine. Then, we all went to bed nice and early, hoping tomorrow would be much, much warmer.

Tuesday:

We woke up at 11:00 and had a really great brunch at this place that was literally on the beach. Then we went exploring. Southern Italy and Positano in particular are famous for their large lemon crop. They make  lemon soap, lemoncello, lemon candy and lemon perfume. Positano is a tourist city and, as were there in February during the off-season, it was like we literally had the whole place to ourselves. After a bit of shopping we hung out on the beach and enjoyed the sun before it went down and got cold again. We dinner at the same place we had lunch and then came back and watched legally blonde on my roommate’s computer. Also, if I had to sum up italy in one word it would be: STAIRS. There were over 500 steps between our room and the beach. Now imagine climbing that at least three times a day, including late at night. Yeah…I sounded like a wheezing asthmatic kid all the way, but I made it. =) 

Wednesday:

We got up and had oranges for breakfast and headed down to the beach. Now, for those of you who know me extremely well, you will know I am terrified of the ocean. Like, deathly terrified. However, I (somewhat) conquered my fear and went out with my friend Kelly up to my waist. Even though the beach was beautiful and warm, the water was not. The beach was really rocky and the water was incredibly cold. Guess what? I swam in the ocean past my knees. I guess there’s a first for everything.

When we got back to our room, we learned that that the next day (aka when we were supposed to leave) there was a huge labor strike in Southern Italy. So, after a bit of freaking out we called a cab and got everything sorted out and got dinner at the place we ate at the first night. It was a great last full day in Italy.

Thursday:

We got up early and packed all of our stuff to go to the airport for our flight that was at 9:00 at night. Our roommate who booked the cab told him to be ready to leave at 10:00. Our cab ride was an hour and a half. So…if you have put two and two together you will notice that we got to the airport at 11:30 and our flight was nine and a half hours later. NINE AND A HALF HOURS IN THE SUPER SKETCHY NAPELS AIRPORT WITH NOTHING TO ENTERTAIN ME BUT A RED PEN AND A NOTEBOOK. By this point all of my electronics had died and I may or may not have lost my sanity in the midst of such a long waiting period. Also, people were literally leering at all of our bags…it was very unsettling. Fun fact: my favorite thing to draw is elephants and after nine and a half hours I could literally teach a class in it. We finally got on the plane, exhausted and cranky, and the eventually through customs. The two flatmates I was with and myself had to take a wired route home and didn’t get in until two in the morning but it was was good to be home after such a long trip.

Image

(the view from my room)

Image

 

I guess that’s all for now!! Ciao!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Roman Holiday (Spring Break, Part One)

So I went to three places for spring break…this is part one of three. We started off in Rome then moved to Pasitano and then back to England. This will be yet again another diary style post. I hope you like it…but if not…well, keep reading anyways. 

Day One:

We got to Rome took a cab and made it to our hotel. We got some money and then we met one of my flatmate’s friends who is studying abroad in Rome to show us this AMAZING pizza place. Okay, who are we kidding? It’s Italy. All the food is amazing. I had Capriccosa…or hard boiled eggs, olive, mozzarella, mushroom, artichoke and prosciutto. (I hope you aren’t hungry because there is going to be a lot of food in this post.) Then we went to get chocolate shots, pistachio gellato and then we went out to a club. Overall the first night of spring break in Rome was amazing!! 

Day Two:

I have been to Rome before, but I forgot how beautiful it was. I am not sure how that is even possible. Woke up and got got breakfast then headed to the Vatican. First off, we went to St. Peters, the Cupula and the Vatican Museum. In the afternoon, we went to the Colosseum and then wandered around the ruins in the area. It was so beautiful outside and everywhere we looked it was gorgeous. For dinner we went to this incredible restaurant at the top of the Spanish Steps. They food was so good and the Steps were so beautiful at night. After that, I (thankfully) made a quick dash to the Trevvi Fountain and made a wish. It was the perfect end to our last night in Rome.

 

Some quick photos:

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Ciao!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Two Places at Once

Sorry for the delay in blogging, but I was having some technical difficulties. As in, sauce-got-on-my- keyboard-while-I-was-cooking-and-then-I-got-locked-out-of-my-computer-because-I-couldn’t-type-in-any-passwords kind of difficulty. So, that was fun.

Now, as for the actual blog. I got to do something REALLY cool a few weekends ago…go to Greenwich, England!! What is it about Greenwich that makes it so cool? Well, that is where the home of the Prime Meridian is and also the home of GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) which is what all other all other time is based on. Are you starting to understand why it was such an awesome place to visit? Image

(My feet are on either side of the Prime Meridian…hence the title of this post)

Image

(see!!)

Image

Image

Did I mention this is also an observatory? The planetarium is incredible and I highly recommend a visit if you ever get the chance.

Not only that, but on the way there I met another girl who is in my sorority at Temple University and made some really nice friends with all of her friends. 

Image

 

Well I guess that’s all for now! Cheers!!

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized