Month: April 2012

The pizza! The pasta! The Sartorialist!

First of all http://www.thesartorialist.com/

I knew what I was up against long before I started packing 10 days worth of clothes into a ryanair sized suitcase. If you’re not sure what that means, it’s like half of a fun sized candy bar, that weighs less than the outer shell of an M & M.

It was also tricky because the weather wasn’t going to be as beautiful as I’d hoped in my dreams. In college I never did a wild “Spring Break” so I figured this was my exciting chance to have a fabulous vacation and soak up the Tuscan sun. HA.

I should throw in that anyone can visit Rome, Florence, and Venice, on a tiiiiggght budget, if you go camping. So yes, I went camping. The Sartorialist would not be chasing me down any cobblestone streets to ask what I was wearing. uff.

Day 1: See the Pope on Easter.

Vatican City, Cathedral. Happy Easter! Feliz Pascua!

I don’t necessarily have a physical checklist of awesome things I’d like to accomplish, or see in life, but I think it would be appropriate to start one now that I have seen the Pope, on Easter, in Rome. CHECK.

After listening to big poppa, we headed into the city to see what we could see- namely the Roman Forum, the various plazas (de Espana, de Navona), cafes for gelato, and the Colosseum.

kickin it by the Pantheon

Giolitti, celebrated since 1900

According to my handy favorite guidebook ever, this place had gelato. I’m sure so does just about every other cafe in Rome, but I trust the guidebooks and the crowd in and out of this place. If you’re in Rome in the Pantheon hood, check out Via Uffici del Vicario, 40.

For someone who doesn't love ice cream, that looks pretty good.

Plaza de Espana

MmmMMmm

The above pizza is from another place i’d really recommend going and waiting. Da Baffetto, Via del Governo Vecchio, 114. The waiters were funny and the pizza was perfection. I had no problem finishing off that entire plate.

Doing as the tourists do. Seeing the Colosseum.

Colosseum at night. And me. Thanks photographer Nicole.

A great tip that I got before this trip was to get tickets to the Roman Forum before the Colosseum. The forum is really cool, and you’ll want to go but the line is a lot less insane, and you can get your entrance for the Colosseum and another museum all at the same time for 12 euros.

Said dal 1923

One of my favorite areas in Rome was in Termini/Pigneto. It felt extra Italian, hippy-ish, and not super touristy. They had cool shops and not everyone spoke English, which was refreshing and then difficult all at once. As a chocolate LOVER I highly recommend Said dal 1923, Via Tiburtina, 135.

It’s like a museum of chocolate wonder. I bought myself 6 fancy chocolates and I ate them on the train later in the trip to Venice while the family in my cabin stared at me. They needed something to look at. Had to make them more jealous.

chocolate

My favorite thing about Rome was everything. I liked the people because they were polite- always saying good morning/afternoon, please and thank you. I liked how you could walk down the street and see something amazing unplanned and unguided. I liked how my guidebook lead me to some of the best pizza and gelato that i’ll ever eat. If I knew even the slightest bit of Italian I would go live there. It’s easy enough to read being so similar to Spanish, but I don’t know if I have the dramatic intonation, hand gestures, or vocabulary to survive a lifetime there.

Trevi Fountain

I also made a wish here which supposedly means you will return to the city. Since that wish was automatic, I made another wish and I think it’s coming true.

un beso

p.s, next up is Florence

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Barcelona: Ga-ga for Gaudi

If you have ever kept a diary or a journal, you know that it’s really awesome at first and you have so many things to say to your new clean slate, blank page friend. It’s almost like a dog because it while it may silently judge you, it loves you anyways.

….And then you get busy, and two months later you write an entry about how busy you’ve been. Months after that you look at it and you’re like, what a piece of crap, this is no Eat, Pray, Love!?

Then maybe you tear out the page where it talks about your crush or one crazy weekend and throw it on a shelf, where in 5-10 years it will really be hilarious. Trust me.

A blog is much different (in my opinion).

I have some mushy days, and funny days, but mainly I want to represent all the good food and travel that i’m experiencing. I know i’ll miss it this summer, but I’ll be back in La Rioja for another school year!

Semana Santa kicked off April 5th for me and I started with some friends in Barcelona. I had been once before in 2009 for a weekend and I went on a wild nearly get hit by cars, drink sangria and get back on your bike, bike tour. It was perfect because with only one full day I saw all the major sites (for about 5 minutes each). I was excited to go back and see it again with maybe a new perspective, and hopefully less rubia and naive?

Me with the holy family: Sagrada Familia

Me and my girls at Parque Guell

my ship

smooch! Dali museum

que religiosa

Holy procession

 

GAUDI!

I love a good market. They are photogenic.

A boquet of jamon sandwiches! or chorizo!

I have so many more pictures of people’s apartments you’d think I was a real estate agent, but I also didn’t take as many photos since it was the second time around for me. The market for me was a high light because I love food.

Also being in a big city reminded me of how many styles of food there are…like food that is actually spicy- something I really miss from time to time.

This is only a preview of what Semana Santa really had to offer, because we landed in Barcelona mainly so we could fly to Italy. It all started with Il Papa in Roma.

un beso

p.s, Il Papa is not a nickname for a rapper, it’s The Pope.

 

 

Life as it should be

On Thursday I will embark on my Semana Santa adventure. It is my spring break, and although I can travel almost all the time on small day or weekend trips to Bilbao for example, I’m ready to get out of my daily routine and clear my head for a week and just indulge in some pizza pasta and fashion.

I was reminded recently that while everyone back home thinks that living in Spain is awesome all the time there are still the same daily heart aches and pit falls happening that would happen to me back home. Sometimes I like to just lay in bed and watch an episode of Stephen Colbert, and sometimes I just want to speak English because my brain hurts from reading Lolita in Spanish. But other times i’m glad I have the great friends that I have here that get me out to see beautiful things.

Olite day trip…

Castle in Olite

Castle in Olite, with model Nicole

Church in Olite

 

Bilbao day trip…

With my roomie in Bilbao

friends in Bilbao

By the bridge in Getxo

Beach in Getxo

 

So now when I sit here in my bed, or on my chair and worry about the near and distant future I try to think about the beautiful weekend I had, and the laughs I had over small things.

These next three days will be a whirlwind of trip preparation and excitement and I plan on enjoying every moment of it for myself.

un beso