--Friends Lisa and Ben visited. Since they'd both been to Rome before, I was able to show them a piece of "my" Rome. I love showing off this incredible city!
--Went to Bologna and Ravenna with two friends and one of my students. Let's just say that the trip to Bologna was well....never ending. We took the train to Bologna only to have it hit something in a tunnel about 45 minutes outside of Rome and stopped. And there we sat for 3 hours. Yes, three HOURS. Without any information or anything. Well, except for the free soda we got. Then, they turned the train around and sent us back to Rome only to put us back on a slow train. All in all, we arrived in Bologna much later than we'd expected. Since it was closing in on 6:30 by the time we were able to get out to see anything, most everything, ie. churches, museums, etc, was closing for the day. So, we spent our time at Tony's eating the most amazing Bolognese of my life. Of course, we were in Bologna, so I wouldn't expect anything less!
The next day my friends returned to Rome and my student and I forged ahead to Ravenna to check out the mosaics. Can I just say WOW?? Absolutely, positively unbelievable! They were so gorgeous and I am still floored by what people were able to create out of tiny pieces of glass.
--My cousin, Brooke, arrived for her first European adventure! We spent some time together in Rome, Florence, and then she went to Venice by herself for a couple of days before we went to...Barcelona! I first visited Spain in 2000 while my sister was studying in Granada and Barcelona was the only major Spanish city left on my list. So, we headed to Barcelona with Sean and Joy for 4 days.
|La Sagrada Familia|
My favorite thing, though, was the day that we saw the Barcelonans (is that even a word?!) gather together in front of the Cathedral and dance the Sardana. It was so cool! Here's how this works: an orchestra plays whatever music it is that one plays to do the Sardana, then one by one people begin to gather in a circle and dance.
November: (I don't even know where November went!!)
--Venice: As always, the 10th weekend of the semester found us in Venezia. I never get tired of that city and wandering around. I discovered some new gems on my own, and Joy, Sean, and I went to the island of Torcello to look at some beautiful mosaics.
--Vienna: Well, this weekend getaway deserves its own post....