There's No Place Like Rome

Hannah Webster
July 16, 2018
Trevi Fountain

June 3rd, 2018

I can't believe that my first whole week in Rome has already flown by. Being here in Italy over the course of 10 days thus far, has been anything but terrible. The first few days that we arrived in Rome was jam packed busy with IES Abroad orientation and exploring the Eternal City. And already, I have made a great group of friends that will eventually be so difficult to say goodbye to.

Some of my initial thoughts on being here:

  • People weren't kidding about this Italian heat!!
  • I think I might eat pizza for every meal these next eight weeks...
  • "Oh hey, that's a cool monument!"
  • "I can probably throw a rock at The Vatican, that's how close we live to it.."
  • "How did people back then sculpt THIS?"
  • "WOW!"
  • "Okay is anyone else sweating through their shirt?"
  • "...another gelato break? Yeah, I could do that."
  • "Seriously, can we find a place with air conditioning?"

Luckily, I’ve been able to pick up on some of the Italian basics, like “buongiorno”, “posso avere”, “per favore”, and can successfully order food on my own (most of the time).

So far, the biggest obstacle that I have faced is trying to unlock my iPhone. Unfortunately, unlike the rest of my roommates, my iPhone is not automatically unlocked through my phone provider so I was not able to use my Italian SIM card or have any service until a week and a half of being here. So note to anyone with AT&T: make sure your phone is unlocked before going abroad and getting a SIM card over here or else there's so much unwanted stress added.

I have also been very lucky with my internship position. Over the course of the next eight weeks I will be interning as a media content producer for Romeing Magazine. Romeing Magazine is an English-language magazine for expats and tourists. I’m very eager to start working for them and producing my own content that I could show off to the people of Rome and people back home, of course.

It has been such a whirlwind of emotions, mostly shock due to me still not believing that I’m HERE doing this. I do miss my family, but in such a different way. I love being on my own and being independent in Europe, but each time I see something incredible or do something fun, I can’t help but think “Man, I really wish my family was here with me to experience this with me.” But when I think of it, it is such a blessing that I’m doing this on my own because I’m pushing myself to be alone and do things that I’m not used to, and fortunately have the memories and pictures to go back and share with my family at the end of this.

My first weekend trip was this past weekend when we traveled to Florence for my birthday. Initially, it was very confusing and scary planning our trip because we weren’t sure if we were booking the right trains and whatnot, but it worked out perfectly. It was very exciting being in Florence because it is a lot different from Rome in regards to a smaller town feel, but still as beautiful nonetheless. What I did not know about Florence was how rich in art the city is. Everywhere you go, you can find significant history and art forms, such as the statue of David. So for people that are very passionate about art history, Florence is the perfect place for you and you will not be disappointed.

Though our trip to Florence was short and sweet, it was so nice to finally get back home to Rome. As cheesy as the saying is, there is no place like Rome and my roommates and I experienced this first hand after leaving for a few short days. The feeling that we had in our stomach when we arrived back at Termini the train station, felt like a huge sigh of relief knowing that we were done traveling for a few days and could comfortably get back to our apartment.

Though it’s only been a short period of time that I have been in Rome, I’m already dreading the day that I have to say goodbye to this electric place.

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Hannah Webster

<p>I am a 20 year old pursuing a career in Journalism at the University of Iowa. Thrives off quoting The Office, making&nbsp;people laugh, and lover of puns and pizza (obviously).</p>

2018 Summer 1, 2018 Summer 2
Home University:
University of Iowa
Lockport, IL
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