Roman Holiday and Spanish Love Affair

14 Apr

In the past week I’ve been in 3 countries, 5 cities, and seen things that if you would’ve told me a year ago I would see, I would have called you a nut job.  For our last and final trip with the EU program, we were split up into three groups and we all went on separate trips to various EU countries.  My group traveled to Rome, Italy and Madrid and Barcelona, Spain.

The night before we left for Rome I watched The Lizzie McGuire Movie to familiarize myself with the sites.  Sadly, I must report there was no love affair with an Italian popstar, but the city was even more gorgeous than the movie let on.  I got to see the Coliseum during the day and at night and throw my coin in the Trevi fountain (which means I’ll come back to Rome.  If I do, a second coin means I’ll marry an Italian. Here’s to hopin’!).  I spent a day laying out on the Spanish steps with a friend–one of the best and most relaxing days of the trip, despite the severe sunburn I suffered later.  I ate 6 cups of gelato and tried every pasta dish and pizza place in the vicinity of the hotel.  I undoubtedly gained 10 pounds in 4 days.  I visited Vatican City (did you know its considered its own country?), saw the Sistine Chapel (where I had “SILENCIO, NO PHOTO!” screamed in my ear about 33 times) and almost got taken out by the crazy Italian drivers. Seriously, those people completely disregard the bright yellow stripes on the road called lanes.

Madrid was next, and there began my love affair.  With a country, not a boy. Sadly. Anyways.. we didn’t have a lot of time to see the city between our academic meetings (almost forgot about those), but even the little that I saw was amazing.  After the hustle and bustle of Rome, Madrid was oddly calming and peaceful.  It was also the city where I was introduced to Starbucks Frappuccino’s , and I’m never turning back from that one.  While in Madrid, we did a day trip to the city of Toledo, one of the most gorgeous places I’ve seen.  Only my pictures could do it justice, so don’t forget to check out my album.

Our last city on our Euro Tour was Barcelona, Spain.  Dad, cover your eyes for the next part:  I probably bought more clothes there than I started the trip with.  But hey, with subpar shopping in Germany, I needed to do my one-time splurge for the upcoming Spring months.  At least that how I justified it to myself… We got to go to the IES Barcelona center and see all of those kids in action.  As much as I loved Barcelona, I am so glad I picked my program in Freiburg–they have over 300 kids in their program!!  Thursday night our whole group went to see the DJ Laidback Luke perform at a club on the beach, where I met people from places as different as Chicago, Spain, and Luxembourg. Gotta love the EU.  Our last day we all went and laid on the beach for hours soaking up the last bits of ocean breeze before heading back.  Let me add, this was a topless beach.  An experience I never again want to experience, thank you.

Last night, all our trips reunited at our dorm for dinner to talk about our adventures.  After hearing everyone else’s experiences, we were all so thankful for our trip.  Our leaders were amazing, the weather was perfect, our group got along so well, and we saw some of the most beautiful sites in the world.  I will never forget this week, I am so grateful for this experience–thanks Purdue & parents!!  I ended the week with a camp-out in the courtyard between our dorms with two of my friends.  The Germans probably thought we were totally nuts.  And they’d be completely right.

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2 Responses to “Roman Holiday and Spanish Love Affair”

  1. Doris Block April 15, 2011 at 12:43 am #

    again you really do write very well almost as good as being there (not hardly, but sounds good) what a marvelous experience you have had and are having you will remember this for years as I do my time in the far east and that was really a loooong time ago can’t wait till you get home to see you and hear you tell about your fabulous trips etc. I know you are learning lots also Loveyou, GDee

  2. Ashley in Seville April 23, 2011 at 5:17 pm #

    Hey I was surprised to hear that you made it down to Spain and I’m glad you enjoyed it!

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