Tag Archives: Cinque Terre

Worth the Sweat

22 Jun

Inquiring minds want to know, what is my current bug bite count? 14. Awesome.

This past weekend we left early on Friday morning to catch the train to Cinque Terre where we hiked and cliff jumped! Let me start by saying that I can hike with the best of them, but I suck at cliff jumping. You would think that falling off a cliff wouldn’t take skill but apparently, it does. I landed wrong both times I got the guts to do it and cut up my hands, feet, and knees on the rocks trying to get out of the water. It was cool, glad I can say that I did it, but I doubt I would ever chose to do it just for fun again.

The hiking aspect of the day however, I was pretty damn good at. I kept up at the front of the group for the whole hike and sweated out all 4 bottles of water I drank that day. Cinque Terre is comprised of 5 cities all set in the mountains along the coast. We got off in Riomaggiore, hiked to Manarola which took about 20 minutes. From there we hiked to Corniglia which took about 45 minutes or so. We hopped on the train to Vernazza to grab lunch and swim a bit then hiked all the way to Monterosso which took about an hour and a half. The total distance that we covered was 9 km which is about 5 and a half miles!! Last time I hiked that much in a few hours? Oh, never.

View of Vernazza

View of Vernazza

After the sweatiest day of my life, we grabbed dinner in Monterosso and while walking around looking for a place to eat, our professors asked a cute old Italian woman for suggestions. She told us about her cousin’s restaurant at the top of the mountain. Next thing we knew, she was on the phone with him and there was a bus waiting to take us to the top of the mountain for a fabulous Italian meal! It was an amazing view and just goes to show you how helpful Italian families are. We took a cramped train ride back to Rome and I arrived in my apartment around 6:45a.m.

The rest of the weekend I spent at the markets and relaxing in Rome while my roommates were in Capri. Today is the first day of our 5th week here. Wednesday we leave for France and next week Friday we are flying home! It’s going to be a bittersweet goodbye to say the very least. I’ll post later about why I’ll miss Rome but I can’t deny that I’m happy to be going home. So much is happening that I’m missing and I should be home for. I’ll see you all soon enough! Can’t wait 🙂

Hiking to Monterosso

Hiking to Monterosso

Bless You, MSU

18 Jun

If you are a Michigan State Spartan, you should be pleased to hear that yesterday, the Pope himself blessed Michigan State University! And no, that is not a lie. We got up extra early yesterday and traveled down to spend the day in  Vatican City. It reached a high of 90 here yesterday and we watched the Papal Audience in St. Peter’s Square in the scorching sun. I have never sweat so much in my whole life like I did yesterday, it was disgusting.

Seeing the Pope was amazing and I took some incredible pictures. I also got a video of the five minute English interpretation and naturally, the very last group blessed was MSU so when I post the video, watch it to the end! I will upload photos/videos soon so keep an eye out for that.

From there we got lunch, toured the many, many museums within the Vatican Museum with Susan Sanders and lastly, saw the beauty of the Sistine Chapel. We weren’t allowed to talk or take pictures so naturally Susan told us everything about it while we were there and I got some great pictures I will post for you soon!

Today Aubrey and I went for another run. It was once again amazing but I’m worried my sweat tastes sweet because I am covered in bug bites and Aubrey is fine. Yuck. Tomorrow we are catching the bus at quarter to 7a.m. to go to catch the train to Cinque Terre. Our professor Tom is taking us hiking through the mountains and cliff diving. It will be another super sweaty trip but one I am highly looking forward to. All my roommates and a few other people will be traveling after that but I’m coming back to Rome to shop and catch up on my Independent Study project.

My roommate back home, and my dear friend since kindergarten is engaged so I am researching traditional Italian wedding customs. If you know of anything that you could tell me about traditions/how the weddings compare to American weddings/customs/gifts, any information would be useful. I would like to ideally get her a traditional Italian wedding gift while I’m here so Kerrie, if you read this, hope that works out!

I’ll update again soon with news from Cinque Terre and any findings I have on Italian wedding customs in case you too are interested. Hope you are doing well, miss you as always and I will be home 2 weeks from tomorrow. Gosh time is flying by! Ciao!!