Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Last One

Well folks, I do believe this will be my last blog post for RSU Italy. Of course, I could be totally wrong. But it is here that I will leave you with my closing thoughts.

Before I went to Italy, people who had been to Europe told me that this trip would change my life and that I would come back a new person. They told me I would probably love it there but that I would also have a new found appreciation for everything I have in America. Most of this is true. I have come back changed. I have come back with a lot more friends than I had when I left. But I don't think I could say I've come back a new person. I learned a lot over there and saw a lot of things I've wanted to see my whole life. I met some wonderful people and learned a lot about the Italian culture.

Oh! I did discover something new about myself: I'm an excellent haggler! There's all sorts of street vendors in Italy and I haggled for me and all my friends! Those awesome red sunglasses...7 euro! The guys originally wanted 20. I tried to go for 5 but he just wouldn't budge.

Anyways, I'm still the same person I was, just more well traveled. And I definitely have a greater appreciation for the following more American things: washing machines and dryer, air conditioning, level roads, my car, whole wheat bread and pasta, my mattress, being on time, and American Men. Italian men made me grateful for American Men. Seriously. I also have a great appreciation for the variety of all sorts of things that we have available to us in America.

That being said, I don't want to make it sound like I didn't have a blast in Italy. Because I did. I absolutely 100% LOVED IT. And I will definitely go back. I would love to see things in Florence and Rome that I didn't get to see this time. And I love the people and the food and everything there is to see there. I'm just glad to be home :)

So, fellow students and other blog readers, if you are considering signing up for the trip for next year, I HIGHLY recommend it. You will have the time of your life. You will see things you might not have otherwise gotten the chance to see. You will make friends that will probably last you a lifetime. And you will spend a lot of money. Seriously...start saving up now. Especially if our economy doesn't start swinging back upwards. It's totally worth it...but start saving now!

If you have any questions, please feel free to post them here or talk to Gary Moeller (head of the RSU art department).

Now I take my leave of you, friends. It's time for me to get back to reality. It was a pleasure being able to share all of this with you. I hope you enjoyed it.


Jennifer Hanley

Roma Amor!

I offer you a tour of Rome:
The Pantheon

Just me and the oculus (the hole in the top of the Pantheon)

Rapheal's tomb (in the Patheon)
The Trevi Fountain

Me and Kendra (at the Trevi)
St. Peter's (known to us as "The Pope's House")
Obligatory myspace photo of me at The Pope's House

Inside of The Pope's House
Beautiful right? The Pope has awesome natural lighting!
St. Peter's tomb ('s beyond those lamp things)
Michelangelo's probably know what this is. It's only the most famous ceiling in the world. and I obtained an illegal photo of it (ha ha ha).
The Last Judgement in the Sistine (also illegally obtained...well...I don't know if it was actually against the LAW but we weren't supposed to take photos).
Bernini's Ecstacy of St. Theresa.

Boromini's Church of the Four Fountains.

My favorite restaurant in Rome. Oh. my. gah. That was the best hamburger I've EVER eaten! Seriously. I think the Pope made that hamburger.

This is just some old structure you may know as...THE COLOSSEUM. No biggie.

Myspace photo of me and my new bff, the Colosseum.

Kendra, Becky, and Rachel just the Colosseum.

The Arch of Constantine.

Part of the Roman Forum.

A view of the Roman Forum through the Arch of Septimus Severus.

The monument to Vittorio Emmanuele II, the first king of unified Italy. (This is right in front of the Roman Forum)

Some street views of Roma.

Our last days in Montone

Our last night up on the hill we ate at the Pizzeria and had a yummy meal and lots of laughs. I took a few last photos and I'll post them to give you all one last view of the town we all knew as home for three and a half weeks.

On our last night at the Adamo, Giovanni and Beatrice and their family (these are the owners of our hotel), threw us a big seafood feast and it was GOOD!
this was our bathroom that we (me, Kendra, and Charlotte) shared for almost a month!
Rob showing his love for the Jitterbug.
Me all fancy on our last night in the Adamo.
Archway into/out of Montone

The place we hung out at and bought gelato from often.
The piazza we always hung out in.
My last Montone sunset (sniff).
Meagan and Charlotte at the Pizzeria. Below are Charlotte and Rachel.
We also had a big barbeque at Luca's (the blacksmith) house and it was totally awesome! The food was great, the people were unique and entertaining and the house was gorgeous. and kinda quirky. They had a trapese swing in one room. and yes...some of us hung upside down from it. That's Meagan hanging upside down from it, by the way (the picture is on it's side)
Oh...that crazy Rob :)
This is Enrico (Matteo's bro), umm...can't remember the other woman's name, Rebecca Bachetti, and Rebecca Reed.
And Cayla entertained everyone for a while by playing a guitar and singing. She's very good! Of course, we all sang along and teared up a bit when she sang "Time of your life" by Greenday.

I think I speak for all of us when I say we will miss Montone and it's people. They were incredibly kind and hospitable and I thoroughly enjoyed my stay there. For those of you considering this trip next year, I highly recommend it. I had a blast! And it was truly the experience of a lifetime.

Brandon's Birthday Party

Well folks, we're all home now. But, there are a few things I need to post about before I wrap this blog up. Thanks to my lighting fast internet courtesy of Cox, I can actually do that now. Seriously folks...Italy's internet is slow and unreliable. It's a good thing they have all those pretty buildings and really old stuff. Nah...just kidding. But I am really glad to be home.

I did want to post some pics from Brandon's birthday party though. It was a blast. The best part is we all jumped in the freezing pool to commemorate the occassion. Well, not all of us. First Rob jumped in because that was Brandon's birthday wish. Then Jitterbug Jim (Professor Ford to the rest of you) jumped in and then me, Whitney, Charlotte, Kendra, Meagan, Cayla, Alice and Brandon jumped in with them. And yes, the water was cold as a...well...fill in your on euphanism here.

But, it was LOTS of fun!

Photos courtesy of Lynn Crockett (cuz I was all wet!)

Monday, June 23, 2008

We're Baaaaack.....

....and we're stuck in the Newark airport. But Charlotte had internet so I'm posting to let everyone know that we're home...and we're stuck. Yay. and awww. Anyways, at some point our flight will leave here and we will be home and then tomorrow or the next day I will put up a bunch of posts on Rome and Brandon's birthday party and other fun stuff. Okay...that's all for now.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Florence in a nutshell....

The facade of the Duomo.
Alberti's Gates of Paradise on the Baptistry by the Duomo

The Ponte Vecchio
Sculptures in the Piazza della Signoria

Santa Croce where Michelangelo is buried.
Rebecca, Bree, Cayla, and Lynn in front of the Baptistry
Me, Rachel, and Kendra
Me and Kendra at Pitti
Palazzo Pitti
View of Florence from Palazzo Pitti
Rachel in sunglasses that we bargained for 6 euro (down from 15)
You have to rub the nose of this boar if you want to come back to Florence!
Rob and Jenn White being silly
Donna Jo, Greg, and Pam waiting for the bus
Brandon waiting for the bus back to Montone