For the most part this has been a very uneventful spring break. Everybody was out of town so I spent a good deal of time just sitting around catching up on movies. However, yesterday I arrived home from my big trip to Rome. Rome is an amazing city. I arrived by plane during sunset to see the colosseum and Vatican on my side of the plane. It was a great site and pumped me up to see the city. I went out on the town that night for some pizza and a glass of wine. There are restaurants and bars everywhere and it is hard to choose a good one to settle on. I found some great pizza and listened to Italian singers and it was a nice night. I went back to my hostel fairly early so I could get up early and see the city. That night I could not sleep at all (hostels are not my favorite place). I ended up just giving up at 6am and hitting the town instead of waiting for a walking tour at 10. It was a great choice. I was there for the opening of St Peter Basilica so at 7am I walk in with maybe 40 other people and it is just us and the priests and nuns. If you can only see one thing in Rome it should be that church. It is like 4 cathedrals under one roof. I can't even begin to describe the statues and painting that were all there. It is just something you have to experience. It is a testament to the inspiration of God on people. The rest of the day I spent walking the couple miles back to my hostel. Almost all the old plazas and main sites are on that route so I zig zagged around the city looking at as much as I could. I stopped for some awesome coffee and pateries, too. It was a great day, and one thing I did that I didn't think I would do as much of was stop in most of the churches I saw. I could not believe that every church was a huge cathedral. There are more than 400 churches and while I only saw a dozen, each was spectacular and almost off of them held masterpieces in art and sculptures. 6 hours later I went back to the hostel and took a small name and then headed off for an early evening view of the colosseum and ancient ruins. The next morning (after another sleepless night) I beat the crowds to the Vatican Museum to see all the masterpieces and historical artifacts of Christendom over the last 2000 and more years. They even had Egyptian artifacts and mummys. Crazy huh? I finished up at a awesome cafe and looking at the supposed chains that Peter wore during his imprisonment in Jerusalem. I ended up seeing a friend from school on my flight home so that was a nice finish to a great trip. Pictures are up. Enjoy.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
This is my first Easter away from home. It has been quite around here because of spring break. I only plan on going to Rome next week for 2 days so it has been a lot of vegging around until then. One cool thing I did do is go see Scotland's great wall. Its a stone wall built by the Romans and it goes from sea to sea. It was cool to see the wall, but the museums were the really cool part. The sites are still being explored by archaeologists so all the things in the museum are from about 100 yards away and almost 2000 years old. Crazy. Other than that... not too much is happening. Happy Easter.
at 9:18 AM
Friday, March 20, 2009
Don't get me wrong. I am having a great time here, but this week has been really rough. Cathy's visit reminded me a lot about home and how much I miss it. I see a lot of pictures going up of people getting together for the super bowl and st pats. Its not that I'm mad or anything, I just really want to be a part of everything. This week has been the first time I have ever felt like I am trapped here. Every other day I feel a little homesick I realize that I am here and want to be. This week has not been like that. I feel like I just want to be home for just a minute and that is impossible. Also, I have dealt pretty well thus far with the crazy culture that comes with study abroad and dorm life again, but I am at my end's wit... I have no problem with all the drinking and everything, but it just gets to the point where I am standing in a bar or party, and I am just bored because it doesn't make sense to me to be not your own mind every night or even to spend the money. I personally am done with it. I will still go out with my friends and hang out. I will probably just not be out as late and not have a beer every time or really more than once or twice a week anymore... I miss everyone. I know next week will be better but right now I just want to be home.
at 3:51 PM
Sunday, March 15, 2009
So begins the story of my best week in Scotland :) Cathy flew in on Wednesday morning to spend 5 awesome days in Scotland. We got this awesome price on a plane ticket here so we could not pass up on an awesome experience. We got our money's worth... We spent most of Wednesday just sitting around being lazy and napping cause Cathy had a long trip and I am not a morning person. That night we went to international night so we could say hey to all my friends here. This place was so cool. It had an 80's club upstairs and everything was decked out in mirrors and 80's movie posters. I felt like I was in a VH1 special. Amazing. Thursday was Glasgow day. We saw the old church, went to a graveyard and just meandered the city kicking pigeons (sorry PETA). Next day was Stirling. This is where one of the palaces in Scotland is located. It is also the area that Wallace fought some of his major battles. There is a monument to him near the tower the English kept him in before he was put to death. We saw the castle and walked around the city. We drank coffee at this cool local place that was owned by this young Canadian. She was really cool and played awesome music while Cathy and me passed time till our ghost tour. That night we followed a fully costumed executioner down the streets of Stirling and into the old church graveyard. All this was about 2 hours after sunset. It was a very creepy but fun experience. After a train ride home and an early morning we bused up to Inverness (highlands) to stay in a B&B at Loch Ness in a small town about 20 min away from the city. It was a nice little country town in a beautiful area. I bought a wool hat and we walked down to an old ruined castle, saw Loch Ness and ate dinner at a hotel that was in a 300 year old house. We woke up to a homemade Scottish breakfast (I had haggis!) and started the long trip back to Glasgow... It was such a fun visit and I am going to miss not having her around. I got a little homesick watching her leave to get on a plane. I shall return one day though. I still have a little more to do here, I just'll have to do it alone. There are some pictures up already if you are interested.
at 11:49 PM
Monday, March 2, 2009
Well I just went on my first big trip to Sweden to see Stockholm. When my friends first said they were going to Stockholm I wasn't too sure about it.... What is in freakin Stockholm? Once I was there I realized I was stupid. Stockholm was such a cool city. It had a medieval section in it with all these crazy old buildings and churches. We even ate at a restaurant that used to be a prison and all the little cells had tables in them! We ate right next to the cell that held the man who killed one of Sweden's most famous kings, and I had an awesome meatball sandwich... I asked the guy whether they were Swedish meatballs and he said "Uh, yeah, this is Sweden." I felt a little dumb but he was a cool guy and told us a little about Stockholm.... At night we stayed at a hostel (interesting experience) that used to be an old boat so when we looked out our windows we saw the frozen Baltic Sea. The first night we went out I talked to this Swedish guy at this really cool bar that had beer from around the world and he talked to me for like 30 min about American micro-brews being the best in the world and I saw a cider named Perry! I couldn't take it on the plane though so i didn't buy it... kindda lame. I ate deer meatballs that were so good I cried and then I got to go to a museum that had an old warship from the 17th century. It sank in 20 min after 3 years of construction and they raised it in the 60s and it is in perfect condition. Amazing... It was such a great experience. Look at pictures!
at 9:24 AM
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
The cool thing about Scotland is that o matter what you do, you go to the pub first. For most people here it is definitely an alcoholic tendency, but I feel (I guess out of hope) that this is like the gathering point for discussion and social activity. If you want to go the the movies then you say, "Hey! lets meet at the pub at 8 and head over to the movies." Then after you are done you head back to the pubs to talk. It is a crazy town... So, this week was slow but!!! I did do something productive. I bought Cathy a ticket to come see me! I am so happy that she is coming and we are going to go see Loch Ness together. It is going to be so fun. I haven't been able to take a lot of pictures so far. We all usually go out and socialize and I never want to haul my camera around. Pictures that other people take will go up shortly... Well, lastly, I am almost finished planning my spring break. I am thinking about motorcycling through Italy and in the middle, a Mass done by the Pope. How crazy does that sound? Awesome huh?
at 6:07 PM
Friday, February 13, 2009
I haven't really had a chance to write any stories lately. Glasgow is a really fun city, but for the most part is has been business as usual. I go out with my friends here most every night to try and see the city and explore a little more. This last weekend was a nice lazy one. I just sat around and read my book and played on the computer. Sometimes it is important to just push the reset button. I am meeting some great people here. I will never make fun of the French again! My french friends are some of the nicest people I have ever met and I already love them to death. At the end of the month I am going to Stockholm so that should be a fun experience. You will have to wait for those pictures! Tomorrow I am going to try and go to a castle so those pics will be up really soon... My last story is that I won 30 pounds tonight at the local casino! haha, it was great fun and we all just hung around after at this really cool Sinatra themed restaurant. Good times every one. I miss home dearly though.
at 4:09 PM