Ciao from Rome! I cannot believe that it is now Thursday and we have almost been here a full week-it has already gone by too fast. We got here last Friday and had orientation at the IES Rome Center after flying in from Paris, waiting over an hour for our bags, and having just enough time to quickly get our stuff unpacked at our new apartment. While it was hard leaving Paris, I think it is safe to say that we are all happy here in Rome. The staff at the center have been just as welcoming, and they have even scheduled a ton of extracurricular activities for both weeks that we are here.
One common misconception that I had about studying abroad in Rome was that it would be all pizza and gelato all the time. Guilty, I know, but it's hard not to think that when there is a gelato shop and pizzeria around every corner. I will say, though, that we have had our fair share of both though...5 gelatos and 4 pizzas each! I am happy to say though that not once have we repeated a pizza or gelato shop, but I think that we are starting to develop personal favorites.
But, something that I didn't expect about Rome was how much I would love the field studies that we are doing with class! In Paris, our field studies concentrated most on the different museums in the area or neighborhoods; here in Rome we have already visited two different churches, two archaeological museums, and my personal favorite: the Roman Colosseum! It was even better than going on our own. We went with our Cities as Living Museums professor, who taught us the background and history of the famous structure, its purpose in ancient Roman society, how it has been preserved, and how it serves as a living museum in the heart of the ancient city. Fun Fact: the colosseum once was able to seat 50,000 people at a time. Now, it serves about that many tourists each day! I couldn't think of a better way to have seen the structure for the first time than actually using it as our classroom.
Coming up we have a free weekend here in Rome followed by 4 more days of class before heading to Madrid! I absolutely love it here and cannot wait to continue the adventures abroad.
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Hannah is a rising senior at University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, majoring in Human and Social Development with minors in Psychology and Education. When she is not in class, Hannah serves as Vice President of Coordinators on the Panhellenic Executive Board and a member of the Student Government Senate as well as being a member of the Homecoming Executive Committee and Kappa Kappa Gamma. While she has been on a safari in Africa and tried fresh sushi in Japan, this will be her first time studying and traveling in Western Europe, a dream of hers since high school. She is excited to document her adventures and hopes to share this blog on the study abroad adventure of a lifetime.