I am back. I understand my readership may have dropped substantially since my last blog because I dropped off the face of the earth for a bit but for all of my loyal fans I am back and here to grace you the excitement of a new blog depicting where and what my travels have consisted of in the past couple months. I understand my last blog took place on May 30th and in order to not make this the longest and most uninteresting blog I will cut a few parts down. But where to start I left you all off with me studying way to much for exams well the good news is I am now done exams and after only a few minor alright major hic ups I have passed them all and moved on to a summer of travelling.
Section Sixty Life leaving Vlissigen
Well people it was a bitter sweet day June 21st when I packed up my Dutch life and said goodbye to the ghetto and all the amazing people I met there. The days leading up to it where an eventful bunch with exams finally finishing and few issues leaving me with an insider knowledge of the Dutch medical system. But once that all got sorted out Ryan arrived from Calgary. For those of you who don’t know Ryan he is the boy I suckered in to dating me back in Calgary that is now stuck carrying my extra backpack around Europe. But I will get back to the Europe trip in a bit first I will get back to how awesome the people I met in Vlissingen are and how much I will miss them. I must say no jokes my semester abroad was phenomenal and full of wicked awesome people so it was hard to say goodbye to everyone. But in the end I guess it just means I will have to come back to Europe to visit them all.
Section Sixty One Life as a Parisian
Once the tearful goodbyes were over I headed out with Ashley, Ryan and Zach (Ryans friend) to our first destination on the Euro trip Paris. Our second night paris Ryan and I went to Beatrice and Michelle (French relatives) for dinner and it was just wonderful in usual Gallagher/Dartnell style we hade way to much food and excellent conversation even with the language barrier Ryans French is even worse then mine. Once in Paris Ashley split off to meet with her mom and sister who had come to visit her, so I was left with the two boys. We attempted to do the usual Paris sites, however, none of that seemed to work out. The day we where headed to the Louvre it was closed which was fine by me since I want to see Musee D’orsay instead which was awesome. And then the next day we wanted to go to Versailles but ended up stuck in line at the train station for three hours trying to sort out our tickets to Rome. Which did not work out as planned. Our easy overnight train to Rome was full and the French train workers decided to go on strike so we were left taking about seven trains over 36hours and being stranded in Nice for a night. But in the end we did make it to Rome. We also tried to go to the catacombs in Paris but we got lost and by the time we got to them they were closed but we did make it to the Eiffel tower of course. Then after only three short days in Paris we headed off to Rome.
Section Sixty Two Life in Ancient Rome
As previously mentioned it took us slightly longer then planned to reach Rome but we did make it there and once there we met up with my friend David from Chicago who was joining me and the boys for the Italian part of the trip. Rome overall was pretty freaking awesome although it was boiling hot or so I thought until I have been in Croatia which is more like melting hot. In Rome we went to all the usual sights, we saw the coliseum which was amazing and then got lost in the Ruins beside it and thought we would never get out. We went to all the fountains which where beautiful and went to the Pantheon. My recollection of Rome is slightly foggy due to the fact it was about a month ago. We also went to the Vatican where you learn just how much money the Catholic Church has. It was pretty amazing but I almost passed out in the museums from the heat and amount of people you would think for such a rich religion they could install some decent air conditioning. I saw the Sistine Chapel which is my opinion is not as cool as st. Peters Basilica which was just insane and so far my favourite. And then on our last day we headed to a park to spend the day. David convinced us he knew how to get to this said park but about two hours into the trek I soon realised he had no idea where this mysterious park was so we spent a good three hours trying to find the park well melting away. But we did finally find the park and it was quite wonderful. We fell asleep for a few hours in the shade and when we woke up we where surrounded by small children’s birthday parties. After watching the children’s riveting game of tug a war we packed up and left to call a cab to the hostel since there was no way we where walking all the way back after five days of straight walking. That night Ryan and I went out for dinner and found a roof top terrace that we got to watch fireworks from which was pretty cool. But let me tell you why we went out for dinner. Zach the lovely boy he is decided to eat all my ichiban that I had trucked all the way from the Netherlands so I was seriously unimpressed so he will be making me an ichiban dinner once back in Canada I have decided. But that was are last night in Rome and the next day we headed south the the seriously sketchy city of Naples.
Section Sixty Three Life with too much Pizza
We got to Naples and quickly realized we had stepped back in time. This part of Italy is pretty crazy and makes you feel as though you are in a scene from the Godfather. We were staying at a pretty strange little hostel well the hostel itself was fine but the man who owned it was quite a character Giovanni. I don’t really know how to explain him Harmless but very odd I am pretty sure he was watching us well we sleep. The first thing he did when we got to the hostel sat us down and gave an hour and a half lecture about Naples and the surrounding area. Where to find the best pizza (and it really was the best) where to take the train and where not to walk since it is run by the mafia (the purple zones as he drew them on our map) we also had to be back by dark as to make sure we were not mugged. The first night we went to go get our pizza and almost got run over by about 10 people on scooters since there are no rules to the roads or sidewalks in Naples. We also accidentally went to the wrong pizza place since there is a man in Naples who had 21 sons and 18 of them make pizza and three of them are on the same street. But it was fantastic all the same and massive pizza for like 5 euro I think I have a pizza belly now. The next day we headed out to Pompeii, Hercules and the Volcano. All really awesome but difficult to write about since I don’t know how to explain except as massive ruins from the volcano with dogs ruing around in them, so I will skip that part, that night though the boys decided it was a good idea to buy 2 litre jugs of 80 cent wine which shockingly was not good at all and tasted more like vinegar not even good enough for cooking then actual wine. Then I woke up early the next morning to leave the boys for a night to go visit Charlotte in Arezzo which I will enlighten you all about in my next blog. But for now I am off.
I do Promise however, I will not leave it so long before I write me next blog I have five days of peace at the lakes in Slovenia coming up so I am I sure I can squeeze some time in to keep you all updated since I am a little behind