When I originally started this blog it was to tell the stories of my past travels and share new adventures as they happen. I’ve been going backwards in time with my posts: Colorado, Alaska, China. This series is going to go back even farther. In college I took a summer study abroad class. I was in Italy for almost a month and I went through a company called ISA. We spent a few days in Rome before going to Florence where we had class Monday-Friday for three weeks. These stories won’t be in order and they maybe a little embarrassing but the experience was great and I still speak to many of the friends that I made while there.
I had traveled outside the United States before but never by myself and this trip was partially solo. Upon landing in Rome I met up with the other students there for the summer sessions and the ISA coordinators. They weren’t instructors and they weren’t guardians. They told us when and where to meet for the pre-planned tours in Rome and handled the tickets along with coordinating the travel to Florence and any help we needed once there.
The day we got there we didn’t see anything of any major historical significance, we just wandered and hoped that we could find the hotel again. My apologies for the quality of the pictures. I was not the photographer then that I am now. I immediately fell in love with the food. Not all of it (looking at you eggplant) is to my liking but I tried it. Also, a note on the food, most menus had both everything in Italian and English but there were still plenty of times we still have no idea what we were ordering. I probably ate gelato or tiramisu everyday of the trip and I started that first night.
It was odd and wonderful wandering the streets of Rome with new friends that I’d made just a few hours before hand. They were my age and just as eager to explore as I was. I don’t know if we ever got a good night’s sleep on that trip. We were always going and doing new things or going back to the places that we had found and fell in love with. One of my favorite things about the day was my own private moment on the plane. I woke up and opened the window to see that we were flying over the Alps. The sight was breath taking and I knew then that the trip was going to be fantastic.
More stories to come. Have you ever studied abroad? What was your experience like?