Ciao! A Semester in Firenze

It's been exactly one week since beginning my new adventure in Florence, Italy and let me tell you, it's been something of a dream. Florence is even more gorgeous than anything I could have imagined. With a week under my belt, there are a few things I would like to share about my time in Italy thus far...

1. JET LAG IS SO, SO REAL! After a bumpy landing in the windy city of Florence, I was extremely antsy to start exploring my new home. However, my eyelids had undeniable rocks attached and every blink was a struggle. At that moment, nothing sounded better than my head hitting the pillow. Unfortunatley, even after a week of living in Italy, I still cannot say i've caught up on sleep...

2. New friends are the best of friends. I'm living in an apartment located in the heart of the city. I may be a little biased, but I scored big time with not only the location of the apartment, but also the roommates themselves. The surprisingly large apartment is located on the lively street of Via Dei Neri. The street is packed with yummy sandwich joints, leather stores, cafes, and arguably the best gelato shop in town. Before January 18th, I had never met any of my six roommates. However, we instantly clicked and became very fast friends. Our first night was spent getting to know each other and sharing our expectations for the semester ahead over a glass (or two) of wine at our local pizza joing, Pizza Napoli. I'm definitely in for a treat living with these girls.

my cute roomies

3. If you want to survive, learn the difference between sparkling and still FAST. Although this seems like a no brainer, its tough to spot the difference between sparkling and still water. There have been countless times where I am dying of thirst, only to buy a 1.5L bottle of water and be widely disappointed by the bubbly liquid swishing around in my mouth. A word from the wise, read the label very carefully before purchasing water.

4. DOGS! If you want to experience overwhelming amounts of joy, then Florence is the place for you. Not only do many locals own cute pups of all shapes and sizes, but they are also allowed EVERYWHERE! Clothing stores, restaurants, even the apple store. Study abroad really is all that its cracked up to be and more, but I can't help but miss my puppy :(

5. Sunday's are for family and friends. This is something I absolutley love about Italy. Stores either don't open at all or close really early, people slowly meander through the streets of Florence, and no one is worrying about completing errands or chores for the day. Sunday is for rest. Sunday is for relaxation. Sunday is for appreciating what you have instead of what you don't. I can already tell i'll miss this once returning to the states.

7. Heat, hot water, and a strong internet connection are not guaranteed. Upon arriving in Florence, my roommates and I quickly learned that we said goodbye to perfectly insulated and warm houses the minute we set foot on the cobblestones streets of Florence, Italy. One would think that coming from weather that dipped well into the negatives we would be well prepared. But this is simply not the case. We are all looking forward to the near future when the temperatures begin to rise.

8. Planning trips to travel throughout Europe is immensely exciting, but also a tad stressful. AH! There are so many cities and places that all of us want to experience while studying abroad this semester, but picking and prioritizing certain locations can be a tad overwhelming. Making sure you are getting the biggest bang for your buck is also a major concern. But, putting that all aside, pulling the trigger on a trip you've been dreaming about is INCREDIBLE! A large group of us just booked a weekend to Interlaken, Switzerland. An updated itinerary to come

9. Vodophone is the WOAT! (worst of all time for those of you aren't up with the lingo). I won't bore you with the details of my SIM card from hell, but trust me when I say you should be very thankful for the cellphone companies we have back in the States. Once again, updates to come

10. Four months is too short. This first week flew by in a blink of an eye and 'm positive the following weeks will pass even faster. There is so much to see, do, and experience not only in Florence but also around Europe, that four months is certainly too short. Sorry mom and dad, I might need to stay a little longer..

Before I write an entire book on the adventures of this past week in Florence, I'm going to quit while I'm ahead. The past seven days have been the best of my life! Exploring a new city in a foreign country has had its challenges, but none of them have passed without a smile and a few giggles. I'm excited to finally lose the facade of a lost tourist, and fully embrace the role as a resident of Florence.

Wish you were here... xo

Created By
Morgan Collins
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