Just a Girl in the Eternal City: A Glimpse of Glam Takes on Rome

3:58 PM

Hey everyone!

It’s definitely been quite awhile since I’ve last posted. And I have the best excuse as to why I’ve been gone for so long. I’m currently in Rome. As in Rome, Italy. As in Europe. I still cannot believe it. It’s honestly been a dream come true to be here.

The past month and a half I’ve been residing in Rome, studying abroad through University of Washington and living in the center of the city. I arrived in Italy full of wonder and excitement for the months to come that I would be here for. Back in the early spring, I applied for this study abroad opportunity in hopes of flourishing my skills as an artist in the city that holds much of the world’s most famed works of art. The rich culture and history of the city that I’ve experienced thus far has continued to enlighten me, helping me grow not only as an artist, but also as a person. Three months living here and then back home to Seattle I will go. I’ve already hit the halfway mark, as I just finished up my midterms. In a blink of an eye I will be back home, and it’s crazy to think that.

As part of our program, we are required to take the Italian language class. This has helped me tremendously to learn some key phrases and words that allow me to get through the day without feeling like I’m incredibly lost. Back in middle school and high school I spent years learning French, and knowing another language of similar origin also came in very handy when learning Italian. My fellow friends and classmates who knew French or Spanish also found it way easier to pick up Italian. One of my friends, however, found it incredibly difficult to learn because he learned sign language for his language course requirements, and without that Latin based language background it was harder to understand the rules and rhythms of the language. It’s been so fun taking on another language, and I never thought I would have the opportunity to pick up another language. I’ve learned so much Italian in such a short time, and the biggest reason is because I’ve literally been immersed in all things Italian.

One of my favorite trompe l'oeil works in the Chiesa di Sant'Ignazio di loyola

Each and everyday that I’ve been here has been an adventure. Whether it was trying to find that one art store that has the copper sheets I wanted for my art project, or it was rushing through museum after museum for class, or getting lost in a huge park that seemed to never end. For the study abroad program, we have five days of the week scheduled with many activities, more to do than I would on a typical day at university back home. Here on the other hand, we’ve had so much to do that it’s gotten to the point where my classmates and I feel eternally exhausted yet continuously captivated by what the city has to offer. There is so much to see and do in such little time.

After having spent some time here, I am now neither a tourist nor a local. I reside in the Campo de’ Fiori with six of my fellow classmates, now friends. Literally living in such an iconic piazza. Nights are filled with laugher and music and good food. There’s never a dull moment. Or at least that I have experienced thus far. I do admit that life has not been all rainbows and unicorns. Each of us in our program have gone through our moments of depression and exhaustion and anger and frustration. I’ve certainly gotten quite annoyed at many and all things quite a number of times. It’s frustrating to live with six other people, spending every day in such close proximity to all my other classmates and my professor. It’s a learning experience. There have been days when I’ve wanted to just sit in Tiber Island facing the calm rush of the water, and get away from everyone. I’ve certainly gotten homesick for the food back home, and wished there was a Trader Joe’s to shop at here in Rome. I hate how there isn’t an Ulta here or a Target. I get annoyed when people walk too slow, or when the pigeons can’t leave me alone. But, those small bits and pieces are things that I know I will remember and miss when I return home. I don’t ignore those bad days and those mood swings, I integrate them into my experience of Rome as a whole. Those ups and downs are what makes my time in Rome different and special and unique and mine.

I love walking by buildings and seeing the really interesting doors. Every building I pass by has such aesthetically pleasing architecture. 
Looking through the fence down into the basilica of Saint Peter from up high in the dome

So far, we’ve visited a few other cities and towns outside of Rome as well. This has given me a better view of Italy, and of Europe. Prior to this, I’ve never been to Europe before. At all. The fact that I have three months to learn and live in this city is such a dream come true. It allows me to see more of the city beyond what one would see as just a tourist. Three months is not enough to fully learn a city inside and out, but it’s enough time to dip our feet into the water and get a vague understanding of how it is being in the city.

The one downside to this is the lack of stable wifi I’ve had. My apartment has wifi, but I can only get good signal in the kitchen and living room area, whereas my bedroom has such weak wifi I can barely use Snapchat or Instagram. At the Rome Center for my school, the wifi logs us out in hour intervals. I also have had such a busy schedule that I haven’t gotten a moment to really sit and relax and blog. I’ve certainly missed out on a lot in the blogging world in the past month and half, but I’ve also experienced so much in my time abroad thus far that I anticipate to share.

My apologies for being so absent from the blogging world. I really will try to keep you guys updated, and continue to share more of my experiences as I go. I know that I can post about it when I return, but that’s not the most fun, because I would be recounting my travels afterwards when they’ve had time to sink in. Whereas sharing as I go would allow me to look back and see how my perspective’s changed over time. It’s difficult to find the time to actually sit and blog, but I will try to when I can. I do try to post on my Instagram Story the highlights of my day, whether it be the food I eat (as most Instagrammers love to do), or the weird activities my classmates and I do throughout our days. Don’t hesitate to follow me on Instagram and reach out to me if you happen to be in the Rome area!

To all of you out there who have continued to stop by here despite my lack of updates, thank you for your patience! I really appreciate all your support, and I am definitely looking forward to posting more about my time in Rome.

Lemme know in the comments below if you have ever traveled to Rome before! Or if you are from Italy, comment down below! If you haven't been to Rome before, where would you want to visit?

Thanks for stopping by and reading! I wish you all have a lovely day!

Til next time,

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  2. That’s a pretty good excuse! I say soak up as much of Rome as you can and just blog when it feels natural to. There’s plenty of time to blog when you’re ready. I’ve never been to Rome but I’d love to go one day.

  3. How amazing for you lovely. And wow what an incredible experience and opportunity. I have a friend who happened upon a similar opportunity with school and she's continually returning back to Milan because she loved it so much.


  4. Oh my goodness, these photos are beautiful, what an amazing experience! we are going to Milan at the end of the week, and am so excited!
    Farah x

  5. Love your photos! Rome is one of my fav cities in the world ♥


  6. Rome is such a beautiful city that I would die to visit! Thank you sooo much for sharing your experience and some Italian vibes through this lovely post and photos. :-)


  7. Nice pics

    Instagram: @itsjustwinnie1

  8. It must have been wonderful to have the chance to be learning to speak Italian and visiting Rome for three months as you were studying abroad. I have never been to Italy but I have heard from friends who did that the food and desserts there are delicious.
    Your photos are great. It will be fun to read more once your settled in after your return.


  9. I've never been to Rome but I'd love to go, it looks beautiful.

    Rosy | Sparkles of Light Blog

  10. Gorgeous post, I really , really love the pictures.


  11. Your blog looks beautiful and I love your style!
    I followed you, please follow me back ♥


  12. I've visited London in the past, and I have totally fallen in love with it. Great photos.


  13. You are such a lucky! Rome is beautiful, just like this post. :-) Unfortunately, I've never been in Rome, but I hope that one day I will.


  14. I'm Italian and Rome is one of those cities I MUST visit in my life! It looks so magical!! Spanish steps and the Coliseum are the places I want to visit most!
    Great pics dear!!

  15. This is such a great post. Very informative and detailed too! Thank you for adding the images, it makes it easier. Planning to visit the said country soon though, this is what I need! xoxo

  16. Really appreciated that you shared about your travel experiences. Keep up the good work. Cheers!!!

  17. WOAH!!! Amazing is an understatement! Thank you very much sharing this!

  18. Such a useful post for tourists and anyone who's coming to Rome.This makes me miss Rome so much. Take me back pls!

  19. Very interesting! Definitely different from where I live indeed.

  20. This is by far the best post I’ve read so far!killing it!

  21. Another awesome post from your side. I just love reading your blog posts, Im a fan!

  22. Awesome! I can’t wait to visit this place next week!

  23. Hello Andrea!I don't know if you still remember me, but we used to visit each others blogs and leaving some love years ago. Thing is, I'm back from my blog hiatus and I can't wait for your comeback too!

    Anyway, I've always wanted to visit Rome, and it must have been such a nice experience to be able to bask in everything italian.


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  29. Shared on twitter! Love this so much!

  30. The best city in the world. I wish to go there one day

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