Our Final Trip: AMSTERDAM

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Hello Everyone!

Wooden clogs!

I’m finally having a break in my studying to write about the trip Julissa, Kelly, and I took to Amsterdam last week. I can hardly believe that the next time I’m going to be on a plane, that plane is going to headed home! I remeber when the girls and I first started planning and booking these trips, I never would have imagined that time was going to fly by as wuickly as it has. But, our final trip was to the amazing, beautiful, and relaxing canal city of Amsterdam!

Kelly, Me, Julissa, and Roelof

 

We again took an early morning flight on Friday out of Luton airport, and arrived in Amsterdam at around 9 am. We then made our way to Roderick and Roelof’s apartment. Roderick and Roelof are to native Holland-ers that Julissa met on vacation a couple of years back taht she has continued to stay in contact with. They offered us free accomodation at their apartment for the weekend. We got to their place at aroud 10 am. All of us then set off on a walking tour of the city! We walked past the major square where the Rijks and Van Gough Museums were located, we walked down the main shopping street, through Rembrandt and Dam Square, and walked through Centraal Station. I did not expect Amsterdam to be as beautiful as it was. I also had no idea that there were so many canals? It was beautidful and reminded me of Venice, except it was a lot less crowded. The city of Amsterdam does not have that many tourist sites and attractions as the other cities that we’ve been to. I think that the majority of tourist come to Amsterdam to enjoy the culture and take in the scenery. There were so many people walking around and biking, every where we went seemed so relaxing and easy going. The city has over 2,000 bridges and there are actually more bikes in Holland than there are people?! Just put that into perspective.

In front of Centraal Station

The next day was Saturday and the girls and I woke up and walked over and took a tour of the Rijksmuseum, where they feature pieces by artist like Vermeer and Rembrant. The museum itself was under construction, but thankfully they still had all the popular pieces on display. After we made our way through the different exhibitions, we walked through the winding streets of Amsterdam that line the canals to the Anne Frank House, where we were able to take a tour of the actually living space that Anne and her family lived in when they were in hidingat the beginning of World War II. This was perhaps the best museum  I have been to in Europe because they provided the right amount of imformation that wasn’t overwhelming and had short little video interviews and picture slides going in each of the rooms. It was very well done. The girls and I then took a break and sat down and got some lunch outside of Centraal Station before we hopped on a boat for a canal tour. It was a really cool and different way to experience the city, however, I wish that there would have been a live guide giving the tour instead of a monotone recording that started to put me to sleep at the end. Whoops. We still managed to find out some interesting facts and got to take some cool pictures!

On one of 2,000 bridges!

On Sunday morning after we had all slept in, Roderick and Roelof took us to their hometown which is 15 minutes by car outside of Amsterdam where they showed us Holland’s oldest windmill! It was smaller than I had imagined, and I was shocked to find out that people actually live in the windmill today?! We ended up just spending the afternoon at Roelof’s house watching the Davis Cup and some footy matches on the TV. It was actually really nice to relax under a blanket in someone’s living room and just veg on the couch watching TV. I haven’t done that since I was back home in the States three months ago! We left Roelof’s house around 5 pm, and went and grabbed dinner at an Italian restaurant back in Amsterdam before Roelof and Roderick drove us to the airport.

Amsterdam was one of the most relaxing trips I’ve taken, and it was definitely the right choice of city to go to right before final exams and papers are due. Now that we don’t have any more trips to look forward to, I guess I better buckle down and study. It had to happen sometime, right? My last final and paper are due on Wednesday, and my plane to come home isn’t until Monday. It will be really nice being done with work and being able to enjoy my final days in London.

Only 8 more days until I’m America bound! :)

The Piazza’s Take Over London : Part Two

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Happy Belated Thanksgiving Everyone!

As I am the luckiest girl in the world, my family was just here for a week in London for the Thanksgiving holiday! I picked up my parents from St. Pancreas International train station at 1:30 in the afternoon on Tuesday, as they arrived from a romantic get-away in Paris. We spent an hour hugging and catching up in Costa at the train station, before we made our way to their apartment. Their apartment was only a 15 min walk from my campus, which worked out really well! It was so nice and convenient having them such a short distance away. That night, after we had gone grocery shopping, my parents took Kelly, Julissa, Julissa’s boyfriend Graham who was also visiting for the week, and I out to dinner at Sue Sazzagoni, which was a DELICIOUS italian restaurant right next to Victoria Park.

The girls :)

On Wednesday, I (unfortunately) had class until 2 in the afternoon, but after which I basically ran to the apartment because I knew that Matthew had arrived from Newark that morning! That night we went to Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland, where we walked around the Bavarian themed festival, drank hot chocolate and mulled wine, and rode the ferris wheel. The park was all decorated for Christmas and actually reminded me a lot of Munich, with all the bratwurst and beer stands! :) Winter Wonderland really got me in the Christmas mood! After walking around the park, my family and I went out to a nice restaurant in central London called the Mermaid’d Tail, where I got gluten free fish and chips! After dinner, my family and I met up with Kelly, Julissa, and Graham at The New Globe which is that bar right off of Queen Mary’s campus.

The 'rents and I at Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park!

The next day was Thanksgiving! When my family and I came to London earlier, we ate at this amazing gluten free italian restaurant Cotto (which means ‘cooked’ in italian) We became friends with the owner and his sons, and we called them earlier this month and asked if they would cook for us a Thanksgiving dinner. They went above and beyond my expectations! Dinner was absolutely delicious: turkey, sausage wrapped in bacon, gravy, roasted potatoes, carrots, brussel sprouts…Lino and his sons even made stuffing and cranberry relish! Although I love my family’s holiday traditions, I will not complain about how special it was to have a delicious Thanksgiving dinner, in London, with great company!

At the Thanksgiving dinner table!

On Friday night, my family went to go see Backbeat, which was a play with music (not a musical!) about the Beatles early career in Hamburg, their fifth member Stu, and their road to fame. It was a great show and at the end the actors put on a mini concert, playing 4 hit Beatles songs. The audience was up and dancing and singing along. The next night, after a day of lazy Saturday shopping with my mom and Matthew, the Piazza’s went to a Premier League footy match! We saw Fulham play Arsenal at Emirates Stadium. Unlike the game we had seen at Craven Cottage, our seats were up high in the stands, which actually gave us a nice change of view as we were able to see the plays unfolding better. Unfortunately, the game ended in a tie 1-1.

Unfortunately,the Piazza’s had to leave on Sunday and get back to reality. We had planned to go tour the 2012 Olympic Stadium but because certain train lines were closed, we spent the morning drinking coffee and walking around the Westfield Stratford center (which is the largest mall in Europe) and got a nice lunch there before we headed back to the apartment to clean and grab everyone’s luggage en route to Heathrow Airport. It was sad to see my family leave, it was so nice having them here and gave me the opportunity to take care of them and show off my city! I know these next 3 weeks are going to fly by though as I have my final trip coming up (Amsterdam this weekend!) and my final exams and papers after that! I can’t believe I only have 21 days left?!

 

Hope that everyone is preparing themselves for my arrival :)

Until then… <3

PARIS

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Bonjour! :)

I’m finally getting the chance to update y’all about our trip last week to the beautiful city of Paris! I can definitely understand why people refer to romantic Paris as the “City of Love.” All the different places we could have visited and gotten tours of were endless, exploring the city at night, with the Eiffel Tower illuminated in the backdrop, and the amount of history embedded within the streets of Paris all came together to make the trip unforgettable. We also had our own personal tour guide! One of my best friends Jen, who runs track with me back at Lafayette, is studying this semester in Paris and she took us around to all the “hot spots” in the city and gave us litle history lessons as we went along! Although, I did find that Paris was a lot more dirty than most of the other cities I have traveled to so far, and the underground, what they call the Metro, was always overcrowded and smelled like…..urine. And this was the first place I have travelled to where I really felt like there was language barrier. Thankfully Jen and Kelly both knew conversational French so we were able to get by. Without them, I don’t know how we would have managed!

Jen, Julissa, me, and Kelly in front of the Arc de Triomphe

Our trip began on Thursday morning when we took the Eurostar, which is a high sped train, from St. Pancras International train station in London via an underground tunnel that travels under the English channel to Gare St. Nord in central Paris. After dropping off our things at our (slightly shady) hotel in Montemarte, we immediately started sightseeing! We went to the Arc de Triomphe and after admiring Napoleon’s creation, took a stroll down the Avenue des Champs Élysées. This street, as well as the avenue that lies perpendicular to it, are known as being home to the most expensive shops, restaurants, and cafes in all of Paris! We saw major store like Louis Vuitton and Abercrombie and Fitch that had lines of tourist just waiting to go inside! It was pretty crazy. At the end of the  Avenue des Champs Élysées stands the Louvre! We of course took a walk around inside! (It was free! I was surprised at how much students in Paris save! Students can get into a lot of tourist places for free, where in London, students only receive a minor discount) Once in the Louvre, it’s easy to become overwhelmed. The museum is gigantic, and with o many famous pieces of art and sculpture it’s hard to know where to start! We wandered around, making sure we hit the major pieces (like the Mona Lisa!) for about 2 hours.

We soon realized that we were are starving, and Jen took us to an area of Paris that is near the Notre Dame, called San Micheal. San Micheal reminded me of the Barri Gottic district in Barcelona with it’s winding streets that one could easily got lost in. The San Michael district has a bunch of little restaurants lining the winding avenues that all offer a 3 course meal for 10 euros! I was so surprised that we were getting such a deal on food. (Especially because I had heard before coming to Paris that it was more expensive than London!) We ate in this district every night for dinner and never had a bad experience.

We had plans to go see the Eiffel Tower on Friday morning, but the crappy weather (that seemed a lot like the weather we should have in London!) put an end to that plan. We instead went to see the Musee d’Orsay, which I actually liked 100 times better than the Louvre! This museum located across the river Seine from the Louvre, was smaller and much more manageable, and is home to a lot of Impressionist, and Post-Impressionist painters like Monet, Manet, Van Gough, Cezanne, Sisley…and countless others. Let’s just say I could have walked around there all day! After taking a little break to sit down and get some coffee, we made our way over to the Notre Dame Cathedral! This cathedral was amazing, and although I have a soft spot in my heart for Westminster Abbey, is sure came close as being one of the most beautiful churches I’ve seen.

Kelly and I in front of the Notre Dame Cathedral

That night, Jen was able to somehow snag us tickets for 10 euros to go see the France vs. USA soccer match in the Stad France stadium. We had great seats that were high up in the stands, parallel to the 16 yd. line. We could see everything! The atmosphere was amazing, and since it was a national game, everyone was on their feet and cheering the entire time. I was surprised at how much like the Premier League games this soccer match was. I had a great time, even though the USA ended up losing.

At the France vs USA soccer match

 

Saturday morning we woke up to a gorgeous sunny day, and headed to the Eiffel Tower. We decided to talk the stairs (up 43 stories!!) in order to save time and money waiting for the lift. We were actually pretty exhausted once we finally made our way to the top. I got to learn more about the Eiffel Tower than what I had known before and we were able to take a bunch of great pictures of the city of Paris with the bright blue sky in the background. After we finally made our way down the 43 stories of stairs, we headed over to the Pantheon, where we were able to see the famous pendulum clock that hangs in the center of the Pantheon as well as a bunch of tombs dedicated to people like Joan of Arc, Rousseau, and Voltaire just to name a few.We then went to the Sacré-Cœur Basilica, or “Sacred Heart.” This church is located on the top of the hill in the Montemarte district of Paris, and we were able to sit on the steps in front of the church as watch the sunset over the city of Paris. It was very romantic and beautiful, and made me glad that I had my three best friends there!

 

In front of the Eiffel Tower

On Sunday, our final day in Paris, we went to Louis IV’s Palace of Versailles. Walking around this magnificent building with my audioguide I could (understand why France went into debt after building this!) draw a resemblance from this Palace to our own Buckingham Palace back in London. However, we were able to see much more of the Palace of Versailles because it is no longer lived in. The Hall of Mirrors, where the Treaty of Versailles was signed, was breathtaking. The wall of mirrors balanced with the arcade of windows with the sun pouring in from the gardens was beautiful. It was easy to tell that Louis IV really thought he was the Sun God. The gardens were just as intricate and breathtaking as the palace was, and we aimlessly wandered around admiring the gardens for about an hour. After we left the Palace of Versailles, Jen, Kelly, Julissa and I got lunch in the town of Versailles and sat in a Starbucks sipping our special Christmas drinks for two hours, just talking, until it was time for us to catch our train. It almost felt liek we were back at Lafayette spending just another lazy Sunday together. It was a great way to end the trip!

In the Hall of Mirrors

After our long week of traveling around Europe (not that I’m complaining!) I was able to appreciate living in London, and I’m glad to be back home! :) Next on the agenda is that the Piazza’s are once again taking over London for Thanksgiving! My parents are actually coming this afternoon, and Matthew is coming Wednesday morning. I’m really excited to have them here for Thanksgiving, and to be able to show them more of London from a “Londoners” perspective. As of now we’re planning on going to the Arsenal/Fulham footy match, seeing a show, and going to Winder Wonderland in Hyde Park. It’d hard to believe that I only have 4 more weeks left until I’m coming home for Christmas?! As the famous Ferris Bueller once said, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

Have a Happy Thanksgiving everyone! :)

Gardens at Versailles

 

Munich!

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Hallo meine freunde! :)

Last week was called “Reading Week” at Queen Mary University, and there were no classes all week. So of course, the girls and I capitalized on that situation and spent four days in Munchen, flew back to London for two days to do laundry and breath, and then took the Eurostar high-speed train and spent four days in Paris!

Munich was an amazing city! It was definitely a lot different from London in that it isn’t some huge, international, crowded city. From the food, the drinks, the people, the sights…what more could a girl ask for? I have decided that out of all the countries I have visited so far, I would definitely want to go back to Germany first and spend some more time traveling around. We met up with our friend Jen, who is studying in Paris and is on the track team with us back at Lafayette, at the airport in Munich. We also met up with our friend Mia, who lives 2 hours outside of Munich. We met her in Barcelona on the bar crawl that we did there. She saw via facebook that we were going to be in Munich, so we got to meet up with her again! It’s nice that we have friends all over the world :)

The first day in Munich we of course had to go straight to Marienplatz at the city center and see the Glockenspiel. The clock only goes off  at 11 am and noon, so luckily we were there at 11 and got to see the figurines dance and hear the beautiful bells of the clock tower. We took the lift up to the top of the Glockenspiel tower and got an amazing view of the entire city of Munich.

Kelly, Jen, Julissa and I in Marienplatz in front of the Glockenspiel

We then took the Munich underground system, called the “S-Bahn” to the 1972 Olympic Park stadium, and took the 2 hour tour. The stadium and it’s arenas were all so close to each other, 80% of all the summer events took place in the park. The design and architecture of the park was stunning, and we were lucky to be there in the fall, as walking around the grounds of the par at this time of year was gorgeous because we were able to see the changing colors of the leaves. It was really a beautiful setting, and  we could see a bunch of bikers, walkers, and runners were taking advantage of the now public park. Luckily for us track stars, we went inside the track stadium, and even got to go down onto the actual track and infield! That night, we made our way to the quintessential beer hall, the Hofbräuhaus! Where we were able to see  our waiters in the traditional liederhosen, serving us delicious bratwurst, sauerkraut, kartoffelsalat (potato salad) and of course…beer. It was such a fun, laid back atmosphere, with live music and long, wooden tables where we just sat ourselves down next to strangers, who weren’t strangers by the time we left.

On the starting line of the 1972 Olympic track!

The next day we took a 2 hour train ride south to Neuschwanstein Castle. I didn’t even mind the long train ride, I just stared out the window and admired to beautiful German countryside the entire ride. As we got off of the bus, we realized we had a 30min trek up a huge mountain in order to get to the castle. However, the struggle was worth it and we were able to have to most amazing views of the quaint town below. There was a suspended bridge that hung between two mountains, where we were able to get the most amazing pictures of the castle. It was a great time walking around with my best friends, being in the most beautiful setting, and eating the greatest bratwurst. :)

The next afternoon, the girls and I decided it would be well worth it to visit the first even concentration camp, Dachau, which is located just outside of Munich. A lot of the original buildings have been burned and destroyed, but the original crematorium and gas chambers still stand today. It was a very sombre place, and the museum was great and was packed with a lot of information to read and videos to watch. I was glad we we spent some time learning about and visiting the historical part of this country.

Monday was our last day in Munich and spent the day walking around the beautiful Englisher Garten, where the tree’s leaves were changing color, and Kelly, Julissa, and I walked around for two hours just enjoying each others company and the park’s atmosphere. We then spent some more time in the city’s center, visiting the old churches, Peterskirche and Theatinerkirche. Let’s just say we don’t have churches like that back home in the States. We had one last meal in the Viktualienmarkt where we got to see stands selling fresh fruits, meats, cheeses, and Holiday popery and enjoyed our last hot chocolate in Cafe Rischart in Marienplatz before it was time to come home.

At Englisher Garten

I’ll update you on our trip to Paris in another post. I don’t want to get you guys too jealous all at once :)

Auf Wiedersehen!

 

Doing All Things English

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Hey Everyone!

I’ve been so busy these past two weeks, and I haven’t even been traveling, that it’s been hard to get a post in to update you guys on what has been going on!

Last week was pretty eventful and filled with traditional British activities. I went to go watch a true, live, English Premier League football match! Julissa, Kelly, and I went to see the Arsenal Gunners play against the Bolton Wanderers at Emirates Stadium! We got tickets for only ten pounds and were in the seventh row! They were amazing seats, and we were able to see everything little bit of action, and every move that they players made. It was unreal, and I’ve come to the conclusion that soccer (football) is definitely much better to watch live than on TV. I had gone to a Fulham match at Craven Cottage with my family earlier this summer, but seeing a big time match at Emirates Stadium was in a whole other league, the atmosphere was crazy! The fans were on their feet and chanting the traditional Arsenal cheers the entire time. Arsenal ended up winning 3-1.

  
The girls and I at Emirates Stadium

Kelly and I went to a free lecture that was being held at Queen Mary by Lord Sebastian Coe, better known as Seb Coe. It said in the online description of the talk that he was the head of the 2012 Olympic committee who was responsible for bringing the 2012 Olympics to London, and that he was going to be giving a motivational talk on how to maintain a winning mind. I looked him up on Google before I went to hear him speak and found out that he was an AMAZING track and field athlete! He was an Olympian in the 1500m, and broke and held records in everything from the 800m to the 5k. As a fellow mid-distance runner I was more than impressed and it made hearing him speak that much more meaningful. After the lecture, Kelly and I went up and had a chance to talk with the man himself for a brief 5 minutes, where we talked about track and field in the states, having your dad as a coach, and training. I was really happy that I got the opportunity to hear him speak about his life, and what kind of attitude it is necessary to maintain. My dad (and coach) and brother were pretty jealous  :)

On Friday night, the girls and I got a chance to enjoy another British past time – going to the theater on a Friday night! Julissa found cheap tickets online (12 pounds!) to go see Priscilla Queen of the Desert! I had seen the show when I was here earlier this summer with my family, and I knew that my friends would have a good time. I guess you get what you pay for, because our seats were wayyyy up high in the nosebleeds, but it didn’t take away too much from the show. Priscilla is such an flambouyant, over-the-top musical that it would be hard to not have a good time!  Especially on Halloween weekend it was pretty entertaining to see men dressing up as women and lip-syncing to songs like “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun!”

On Saturday, IFSA-Butler organized another day trip for it’s study abroad students. They took us into Bath, which is about a 2.5 hour bus ride southwest from London. Bath is one of the oldest cities in England, and was founded by the Romans when they took over England. We got to take a free tour of the famous Roman Hot Spring Spa’s. The site was a little too crowded for my liking, but it’s amazing to have seen what the Romans built, and how the hot spring water rises up through these specific cracks and fissures. The rest of the afternoon we just ate lunch,walked around and shopped in the quaint streets of the town. Bath is also where Jane Austen sets the scene in a lot of her novels, and there was a Jane Austen memorial museum. As I am a huge Austen fan, I went to visit, but it was pretty expensive to get a tour, so we just took some pictures outside with her statue! :) We also found this cute little Old Tyme Candy Shoppe where they had every type of candy and chocolate you could imagine, all made by hand! Although, I thought it was interesting that they had some American food, like Pop-tarts and Lucky Charms for sale! It’s funny how we think of that as breakfast and they were selling it in their candy store! I bought a couple of chocolate bars to take home for my family.

Kelly and I at the Roman Spa

The girls and I are off on our next traveling adventure, on Friday morning we have a 6:15 am flight to Munich for the weekend! We come home Monday night, because next week is reading week and we don’t have any classes! Our friend Jen who is on the track team with us back at Lafayette is studying abroad in Paris right now, and she is meeting us there! I can’t wait to go to a traditional German beer hall, visit Dachau, and see the Glockenspiel! Can’t wait to tell you guys all about it! Auf Wiedersehen! :)

 

PS- Check out the pictures tab, I’ve added some new ones!

Translating the English Language

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Even before I set off on this London adventure, I knew that there were differences in the way English is spoken in America to how it’s spoken here in England. (Mainly just the accent!) But as I’ve realized in living here the past month, there are actually A LOT of differences in the words and phrases that are used back home, that aren’t used here!  There are some that my British friends have never even heard of  before! There are even differences in the way that Brits and Americans pronounce the same word, like “fillet,” and it’s not just a “potatoe/potatoe, tomatoe/tomatoe” difference.

With all these difference in mind, I thought that it would be cool to create a guide for translating the English language here in England! I’m sure there will be more to add to the list as I continue to live here over the next two months, but this is what I’ve come up with so far! :)

Band-Aids- Plasters

Fillet- In England they pronounce the “T” at the end

Jelly- Jam

Sweater- Jumper

Stand in line- Stand in queue/ Queue up

Thanks- Cheers

Herb- They pronounce the “H”

Attractive- Fit

Ugly- Minging

Trash- Rubbish

Garbage can- Bin

Sausage- Bangers

Chips- Crisps

Fries- Chips

Early dinner- Tea

Cool/Sounds good- Decent

Pulp (like in orange juice)- Juicy Bits

Juice- Squash

Schedule- Timetable

Diss/Call out- Parr

Adventure Weekend in Lake District National Park

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Hey guys!

I got back yesterday from my Adventure Weekend in Lake District National Park, which is in northern England about 50 miles south of Scotland which was a 6-7 hour bus from from central London. This weekend trip was organized and included in my IFSA-Butler program, and about 150 students came! We left Friday morning at 10, and got to the Barrowdale hostel at around 6pm. The hostel reminded me of going to sleep-away girl scout camp back in the states, with the bunk-beds and shared bathroom facilities. The hostel provided us with all of our meals for the weekend, FOR FREE. We had home cooked traditional meals from around the region that were surprising really delicious. I definitely didn’t go hungry.

Saturday morning saw the beginning of our extreme activities. We got a jump start to the day by waking up at 7:30 am, in order to eat breakfast and be at the Glaramara Outfitter center by 9 am. My first activity was gorge scrambling. I didn’t really know what to expect, but one of the guys in the program, Terry, said that it was his favorite activity that the center offered. I was a little apprehensive at first since I was going to climbing through a gorge, which meant water. And in northern England, lets just say it is definitely not warm. Thankfully, the center provided us with lots of warm gear which included: a fuzzy, fleece onesie, waterproof pants, a waterproof jacket, Wellies, and of course a helmet. There were about 20 students in the group,  Julissa, Kelly, and I obviously lead the pack during the scramble. :) Gorge scrambling is literally like rock climbing through the water. We were hiking up the stream, had lots of points of contact, were climbing up waterfalls, and army-crawling through tight tunnels. I had some bumps and scratches by the end of the hour and a half activity, but it was definitely worth it. I wish I would have brought a waterproof camera, because the view from inside the gorge at the section we scrambled in was so secluded and beautiful.

In my gorge scrambling gear!

After we got back from the gorge scramble, changed into some dry, warm clothes and ate lunch, we were off to our second activity! Julissa and I did the Via Ferrata, which is Italian for “by way of iron.” For a little background history, the Via Ferrata was used by the Italians to navigate throughout the gorge to different mines, and was also used by the army in order to have an advantage over the enemy that would be passing through the bottom of the gorge. The Via Ferrata was definitely my favorite activity of the weekend, and gave me the ultimate adrenaline rush! We wore harnesses that were attached to a cable that ran along the mountain, and used what looked like big iron staples as places for our feet to step. I was definitely freaked out at first, being 2,000 ft high in the gorge, but after about 5 minutes I got really comfortable and definitely enjoyed myself. At certain points, we were able to unhook ourselves, and walk through some of the old slate mines. The whole experience lasted about 2 hours, and we ended up on top of the mountain and had the most breathtaking, 360 degree view. I have no words to describe the view, but I felt on top of the world. Apparently, the region of the Lake District that we were in, is the wettest part of England. We lucked out (thanks to Julissa’s good weather bubble) and had nothing but gorgeous sunshine!

On the top of the mountain

On Sunday, we unfortnately had to leave, but not before we made our way into the cute town of Keswick. I was surprised to see how crowded the town was! Keswick is full of sandwich shops, coffee stores, tea rooms, and outdoor supply stores. My friends and I stopped at one of the quaint little tea rooms and treated ourselves to some traditional English tea! I really enjoyed our trip to the Lake District, and wish that I had more time and could go back. It was so nice to escape from the polluted and crowded city, and breath in fresh, crisp air. Even though I was doing all of these extreme activities this weekend, I felt so refreshed being out in the English countryside. Especially after talking to some of the guides on our activities, the Lake District definitely seems like a peaceful and easy-going place to live. The only thing I would worry about living there is access to television so I could watch Glee! But I’m sure it’s something I could  learn to live without :)

This weekend, I’m staying put in London and plan on having no plans. Maybe I’ll even get some homework done….?

PS- I’ve uploaded some new pictures for the weekend, so check them out the Pictures tab!