University of Wisconsin–Madison

Barcelona, Rome, and Pompeii, oh my!

I think I’ve found a new meaning of being exhausted. A few weeks ago, the university gave us a reading week so we can catch up on all our papers that are due. My friends and I hustled to get our papers done and then it was off to Barcelona for a week! Arriving in Barcelona was one of the greatest feelings in the world. Coming from rainy, cold London and walking off the plane into seventy five degree weather; safe to say I thought I was in heaven.  Not knowing a lot about Barcelona, I thought it was going to be a wandering around type of trip. However, I was totally wrong. It started off a little rough. The airport went smoothly, but then once we got there the language barrier became a problem. Surprisingly not a lot of people speak English in Spain. We ended up getting lost trying to get to our hostel. After a few hours of trying to decode what people were saying, we finally found our hostel! After we settled in we went around to see all of Antonio Gaudi’s amazing architecture. Let me tell you, La Segrada Familia is in the top five of most beautiful things I have ever seen. Everything on that cathedral has so much character and life to it. I could have spent hours just staring at it, but sadly we had to move on. We also walked down the famous Las Ramblas street where we ate loads of gelato and this pizza-like thing. I honestly have no idea what it was, but it was delicious. Of course being in such photo 1beautiful weather and sunshine we had to go to the beach everyday we were there. The citizens of Barcelona were all walking around in their jackets and jeans while we were laying on the beach and swimming. We also ended up meeting a bunch of people who are studying abroad in Scotland that are also from Wisconsin! It’s such a small world. As our trip came to an end, I found it abnormally hard to leave. I could live in Barcelona for forever.  Even though it was a great trip, we learned that not everyone who stays in hostels are great people. For a night we had a man in one of our rooms who ended up stealing these Australian guys passports, wallets, luggage, computers and my phone charger and adapter. So lesson learned, lock EVERYTHING up and double-check everything.

Coming back to London once again felt like coming home! However, coming home to more homework and papers was not ideal. I had four short days to finish some homework until it was off to Rome! I had taken Latin all throughout high school so I have been waiting for this trip to Rome for quite sometime. It was well worth seven years waiting. Everywhere you turn there is something historical to marvel at. We stopped plenty of times for gelato, pizza, and of course pasta. I mean, what else would you eat while in Rome? On Sunday we even got the chance to see the Pope! We went to the Vatican and waited outside until 12:00 when he came out of his window and blessed us all. It was amazing at how many people were there. Even though I didn’t understand a word he said, it was a once in a lifetime experience. After roaming around Rome for a few days I took a day trip to Pompeii and the Almafi Coast. Pompeii was everything and more. I had an idea of what to expect after learning about it for four years, but it was literally breath-taking when photo 2actually there. It’s amazing to think about how they lived and to see all of the original paintings on their walls was astonishing. I can’t even explain how great it was. If you are ever in Italy, you must go. The Almafi Coast lived up to everything it was made out to be as well. The gorgeous scenery and crashing waves made for a perfect ending to a perfect day. I went on this tour by myself so I ended up befriending a few Australian women who bought me lunch and kept me company. It’s amazing to think of how many nice people you can meet in such random situations.

I’m finally back in London to stay for a few weeks and rest. I’m exhausted from traveling, but I would do it every weekend if I could. It’s the kind of exhausting that never gets old because you have had such a great time. Until next time!