Monday, January 28, 2013

Day 1: Arrivederci!!

Well, the time's finally to Italia!! This week has been a whirlwind of "last" dinners (hello ribs and cornbread), planning, last minute errands and the starts of goodbyes.
Errands that were run in pedi flip flops, good thing they looked cute! Obesesed with essie's Play Date.
It's been stressful, exciting, exhilarating and horrifying all at once, but I'm lucky enough to have an amazing family, friends and boyfriend that support me emotionally, physically and of course financially. I cannot express how lucky I am for all that, and it makes being here even sweeter.

Packing conglomeration of necessities and maybe's that ended up being extremely heavy cumbersome.
Bags on bags

I'm writing this exhausted, jet lagged, in dire need of a shower, but in one poorly stitched together piece. At about 5ish, we headed to the airport with the fam, Dennis, Colleen and Mrs. Laughter and anxiously awaited our flight. Though I will admit I did unwillingly shed a quick tear when leaving, I was extremely excited to get to Florence.

Good bye Boston!
My Beauuuu-ti-ful momma
I roll deep

After a 6 hour ( I think)  flight, we landed in Munich, Germany for about an hour. The thing that suprised me the most was the fact that instead of debarking from the plane and heading into the airport, we took the stairs off of the plane, onto the runway, and into a shuttle that took us to another part of the airport. I was pumped to be on German soil, when came my next wave of culture shock. In the airport terminal, there was a "smoking section". It looked like a little box with vents connecting up to the ceiling. Even if I smoked, I would never be caught dead in a little fish bowl like that, but they seemed to be very popular!

After waiting about an hour, filled with "What's your major? Where are you from?" and quite frankly, feigned interest, we took yet another shuttle to a runway. While I was expecting a similar plane to the one that we took from Boston to Munich, I found this plane to be much smaller. It's size did freak me out a bit, but the stairs right up into the cabin were very Jackie O.
pardon the rando photobomb

I was able to sleep on the plane and FINALLY, we landed in Florence. Getting my luggage was a breeze, I loaded it onto a "dolly" type cart, and rolled all 100 plus pounds of it to guessed it...another bus. Unfortunately I got stuck on a curb, and after almost blowing a gasket trying to dislodge it, a kind, toothless  italian airport worker got me rolling again. Phewf. With the exception of that mishap, I fared pretty well. Alot of people in the program actually lost their luggage including one of my roomates (who are fabulous by the way, check Kelli out at ).

We arrived at a gorgeous, old hotel"grand hotel baglioni", which of course oozed Florentine charm, and miraculously hauled all of my baggage to an equally charming hotel room for me and my three other roomates. Check it out:
yes, fancy butt washer on the right
Bedroom entrance

Creepy, old, 20's elevator, which is the size of a broom closet

  After settling for a bit, in true freshman orientation style, we gathered in a conference room and went over safety tips and the plans for the week long...yes week long... orientation. Eventually dinner was served in a pretty rooftop dining room, buffet style ( bruchetta, croissant sandwiches, pasta, pesto on bread, typical italian fare).
There weren't really seats, so everyone kind of gathered around tables. Imagine my surprise, when we wandered up the the outdoor deck and go an unbelievable view of the Duomo.

Literally from out of the books, it was incredible. After joining up with out last roomate, we decided, exhausted, to go explore. We settled on pesce rosso (the red fish), where Kelli got an amazing looking margarita pizza, and I settled for a glass of white wine. They say the wine here is the best in the world, and I must say I was not disappointed. It was ice cold and absolutely delicious.

While we tried to follow directions from our new Pesce Rosso friend, Angelo, back to our hotel, we stopped at a delicious little shop for Gelato. I got Nutella (fave), Bounty ( which I discovered is a european version of mounds...yum) and another one that I can't remember the name of...Overall a great and exciting preview of my home for the next four or so months.
Try not to drool
Michele with one l!!

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