Spain really reminded me of California and made me excited to see my Golden Coast in a few short weeks 🙂
Spending a bit of time in the south of Spain with my brother and a few friends. My high school Spanish is a bit rusty but I am trying! I loved visiting the Mesquite Cathedral here in Córdoba and seeing the intersection of Christian, Muslim and Jewish architecture in the city. So cool!
Amsterdam is so hip. Honestly, I almost didn’t feel hip enough to be there!! It is such an artsy, whimsical city filled with friendly, cool people. I am a fan. The only downside is that I contracted Strep Throat while there! Lame. At least I could suffer in a beautiful place 🙂
I spent the weekend in beautiful northern Croatia with my beautiful friend Ruth! We spent most of our time in the ancient Roman city of Rovinj. It was a dream. I can’t even articulate how lovely every corner of the place was! I want to come back one day in the summer when the water is warm enough to swim! It is cheaper and less touristy than Venice, which is only a two hour boat ride away across the Adriatic channel. I would definitely recommend it to anyone!
Hi friends! How the heck are you? I am pretty good. I sent my lovely friend Annie back to LA on Monday, and am missing her something bad already. But it’s been nice to relax and catch up on answering the emails in my incredibly chaotic inbox. I feel like Ross in Friends when he yells, “We were on a break!”
Above is a video I made compiling some of my favorite moments from the past three weeks. Enjoy!
Hello my friends, how are you on this winters day? My friend Mele is visiting me from California, and boy did Europe have some crazy weather in store for her! We trained down to Interlaken, Switzerland for two days to experience the snow in all its Alpine glory. From Interlaken, we took the little train up through the valley to Lauderbrunnen, the most picturesque valley you ever did see. In fact, this place inspired J.R.R. Tolkien for much of Middle Earth. I can see why. It felt like we’d wandered into a new realm. I was waiting for the White Queen to show up on her sleigh with Turkish Delight…oh wait, wrong book reference ;p Below are a few photos if you’d like to see!Almost needed a grave stone myself from being frozen!Can you say perfeeeeeeeect?!It was almost hard to take a bad picture. Everywhere you looked– boom, beauty!A Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night…;pLove this girl so much and her adventurous spirit that is down for anything! Have a good one friends.
I spent five days in London over fall break, visiting a dear friend from college who is killing it in her masters program at University College London. I spent one month in London after my freshman year of college, so I had already done most of the typical “touristy” things. This trip was all about immersing myself in life as a local. I tried to envision what my daily routine might look like if I lived there. It wasn’t hard to picture- I’ve always been drawn to the city and could easily imagine moving there one day. Who knows?! That seems to be a big theme in my life these days: who knows?
It was so wonderful to have deep, meaningful conversations with an old friend. I miss close friendships with peers. I know it takes time to develop these in a new place, and I just have to be patient, but it’s hard to wait. I want to have best friends here right now…and yet, I’m okay. Day by day, moment by moment. Trips like this sustain me until those new relationships take root and begin to grow. Can you relate?
Below are a few photos from my iPhone because I was too lazy to lug my nice camera around in the rain on that trip. There are also a few other photos from the past few days. Enjoy!Look at this smart lady! She could defend me and my human rights anywhere, anytime.Sometimes you just have to geek out and play tourist.If I look cold, it’s because I was.The Wheel of Fortune, otherwise known as the London Eye.Knotting Hill!Dr. Who fans, where you at? This is the location of the original Tartus in the show.My new university ID. Never mind that I look like a Chinese boy…
My new friend Ian, with whom I take classes at Uni. We are always struggling with Wifi connections but it makes for a funny time.My colleagues and I at a dinner during our trip to Flossenbürg, the concentration camp in Bavaria where Dietrich Bonhoeffer was killed.Famous Nurnberger sausagesI’m always on some train or other. This one was bound for Frankfurt, where I went out with a few friends for Halloween.This photo pretty much sums up how Halloween ended…yes, I do know this person. It was fun 🙂
Have a good week, friends!
This week and next week I have Fall break, so two other Fulbright ETAs and I hoped a bus down to Salzburg, Austria for a few days of fun. The trip didn’t start out so fun, however, as our train was late, which meant we had to SPRINT to catch our bus at the station. It was pulling out as I reached the door and pounded on it with big puppy eyes begging please let us on! Luckily, the driver was a really nice Jordanian who laughed and said “We arabs aren’t very punctual either” and opened the door. My heart was racing for the next twenty minutes but it was worth the work out. We made it down to Salzburg that afternoon and began exploring. It is such a pristine city filled with elegant facades and castles perched on hills. I think my favorite part of the city was the cathedral in the Altstadt.
We stayed in a hostel that showed The Sound of Music movie every night at 8pm. Every. Single. Night. I asked the receptionist if he stilled liked the movie and he just rolled his eyes no– ha! Below are a few photos if you’d like to see 😉That domed building is the cathedral!Casual castle on a hill.It’s always IceZeit (ice cream time). Love Lock bridge, like in Paris!One day we went to Berchtesgaden, a town in Bavaria where Hitler held his summer residence. The actual residence is called Berghof/Eagle’s Nest, and you can take a bus up the side of a HUGE Alp to the tippy top. The view is other-worldly. This is at the Königsee, a lake in the national park just below Berghof/Eaglesnest.The next day we went to Fuschlsee, a dreamy alpine lake near Salzburg. It almost looks like a green screen or some sort of party photo booth backdrop! I was speechless.SmolderWHAAAATTTTTTWe were color coordinated for these photos apparently!
This trip did the soul some good. Now I’m headed to London for a few days to visit my dear friend who is getting her Masters in Human Rights there because she is a boss who will change the world.
Have a good one, friends!
“I just love Rome. It really does cast a spell on you.” -Alec Baldwin
“Italy has changed. But Rome is Rome.” -Robert De Nero
“Italy will never be a normal country. Because Italy is Italy. If we were a normal country, we wouldn’t have Rome. We wouldn’t have Florence. We wouldn’t have the marvel that is Venice.” -Matteo Renzi, Prime Minister of Italy
“Men did not love Rome because she was great. She was great because they had loved her.” -Gilbert K. Chesterton
“Rome was a poem pressed into service as a city.” -Anotole Broyard, American writer