doin' it coed since 1981
Needless to say, Rome was unbelievable. Where do I begin? First, the Colosseum looks totally grandiose and isolated in photos (and it IS grand), but in real life it’s actually right in the middle of the city, next to a busy street – people drive past it every day on their way to work, etc, which makes it such a weird, surreal experience to just walk up a city block and see THE Colosseum standing right there in front of you! There’s actually restaurants and little gelato stands and things right next to it:Like that! It’s absolutely magical on the inside, but I’m already writing too much so I won’t put up a photo. After the Colosseum we went to the Foro Romano, which is a vast network of pathways between the ruins of ancient roman buildings. It’s just filled with half-standing but half-crumbling columns, statues, etc. Something cool about Rome is that there are old fountains all around the city which constantly spout out fresh running water using the Roman aqueducts – here’s me filling up my water bottle (with some lovely product placement… gotta represent) in the Foro Romano among the ruins, in one of the Roman fountains!Lots of tourists are pretty lazy and don’t walk ALL the way around to the back of the Foro Romano, so we found this spot with not too many people that has the BEST view of the Colosseum in the city, and probably the best spot for a photo shoot that a tourist could possibly hope for.
Here’s me and my mom there! We’re so proud of ourselves for finding this spot!
Our hotel brought us breakfast in the morning to our room: Croissants, nutella, tea, coffee, yoghurt, toast… All the essentials. Other sights we saw the first day were the Spanish Steps, the Trevi Fountain, The Piazza del Popolo, and otherwise we just wandered around the smaller streets, and had the best cannolis and gelato of my life as a midday snack, and incredible gnocchi and ravioli for dinner outside on a tiny street lined with restaurants, with a musician playing an accordion right across the street and cars driving past us just inches away from our table. The driving in Italy is crazy.
We spent our second day in the Vatican City, visiting all the Vatican Museums, the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, St. Peter’s Square. ^^ Here’s a cool dude we passed on our way to St. Peter’s Square…
And me hanging out on some beautiful steps we walked past just randomly attached to a street we were walking down. Gorgeous courtyards and things like this are all over Rome – there are lots of big, busy streets just like in any city but then you so often turn down a smaller alley and find some unbelievably charming (and totally deserted) spots so close to all the action.
Rome was tons of fun and very exhausting – After our second day we hopped on a train to Florence! We only got to spend one day in Florence but we packed a lot in. I’ll write about it soon!
Love and hope all is well in the Have,
Hi Mixed Co! Hope all is going well back home! Europe is crazy and I don’t know the best way to tell you all about my adventures, so I’m just gonna post up some highlights on our blog for you! :D Ready? Enjoy.
First stop is Barcelona!
Recognize that picture?… ANTM Season 7 Finale y’all! That’s in Park Güell. Barcelona was really a whirlwind. The first day we arrived we walked down this enormous street called Las Ramblas which is a HUGE boulevard with a pedestrian walkway in the middle, lined with stores and restaurants.
We took it all the way to the waterfront (Mediterranean Sea, babyyy) where I took this photo on the Lion, and walked across a really bizarre/beautiful swirvy pedestrian bridge. The next day we spent a LOONG time in Park Güell which is a huge park designed by Gaudi on top of a mountain, originally meant for people to live there, but when that fell through it turned into an awesome park displaying everything Gaudi had originally built/planned for it.
We also saw a bunch of other important Gaudi structures, La Sagrada Familia, La Pedrera, and La Casa Batllo(this photo). All stunning. Everything Gaudi made looks a little bit like it’s melting, and I’m really obsessed: it’s just my kind of whimsical.
We did a lot more in Barcelona including cathedrals, museums, lots of great food, etc, but I’ll just leave you with three last random-ish photos just for fun:
This is me sipping some watermelon juice in an open-air market called La Boqueria.
This one is a view of our hostel room from the outside (it’s the one with the big greenish-reddish blinds draped over the balcony. Beautiful, ¿no?).
And this is just a photo I took of this bizarre store trying way too hard to be ghetto that I giggled at every time I walked past. They kinda missed the mark. But some dude did yell at me for taking pictures.
Barcelona was an incredible start to my trip, and also maybe a good way to ease into things since it was super easy for me to communicate with people in Spanish. (Some people even complimented me on my Spanish accent after finding out I was American! …I’m really stroking my own ego on that one. So glad living in Leon paid off.) Next up is ROME! I’ve actually already been here for a day but I’ll post about it once I head to the next city. :)
Much gumplove! Sorry for the really long descriptions — I originally intended for this to be shorter. I’ll try and cut the rest of them down a bit… I’M JUST SEEING/DOING SO MUCH IN SUCH A SHORT TIME SPAN, IT’S SO HARD.
What do you get when you mix yellow spray paint, Greek yogurt, sheet music, and a cold swimming pool?
Mixed Company Rush Retreat 2012!
Before going back to Yale, members of Mixed Company met in Bedford, New York to get ready for rush and a new year of a cappella hilarity. We spent our days lounging poolside, breaking out board games on the porch, and playing sumo on the unbelievably green lawn.
Of course, there was also work to be done! One wing of the house became our rehearsal loft, where we started polishing sets for Woolsey, Dwight, and our singing dessert! A sneak peek of how the Rush Managers were preparing for the next few weeks…
Thanks to Sam and his wonderful family for making retreat a fun and relaxing way to end the summer. We are excited to be back and even more excited to find our newest taps! Rush, here we come!
(ya like dat alliteration?)
Many apologies for the late post. I was waiting for something interesting to happen to me this summer. And it did!
I went to a bunch of concerts at the Hollywood Bowl, which may just be my favorite place in the world. I saw the Producers (with Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Dane Cook, and Rebecca Romijn) and Frozen Planet (the next installation in the BBC Planet Earth series) and Norah Jones!
I was working at this e-commerce startup littleblackbag.com. It’s a really cool shopping website where you can trade items and get things that are really cute. This is my shameless plug: sign up!!
Besides working there, essentially online shopping all day (I know, right?) I took an improv class at the Groundlings!! It was super fun, and I learned a lot, and I got GREAT material for schticks… Look how funny we are!!
For my birthday (August 11 - mark dat shyt down. it’s imPORtant!), my family and I took a trip to ITALY!!! We went to FLORENCE,
(you know dat one??)
(me being super touristy)
(this is literally a monumental screw up)
(we celebrated the PALIO with the PANTERA contrada and were invited to their dinner and blessings)
(this is the PALIO. it’s this crazy horse race. it’s one of the coolest things i’ve ever seen)
(you know dis one too? i took SUPER stealthy/illicit photos)
(me at Hadrian’s villa. it has the coolest ruins and was incredibly beautiful)
(me at Villa D’Este. it’s a mid renaissance papal summer home with these incredible fountains. apparently the bellagio fountain show is based on these fountains!)
It was such an incredible trip and a great way to spend time with my family before coming to retreat!
Now, I’m sitting in a room with Mixed Co, playing Catan and listening to every kind of music under the sun. I have to say it was a pretty great summer, and I’m glad to be going back to school in a couple days!!
MUCHOS BESOS AMIGOS,
¿Imaynallan kashankichis? ¿Allillanchu?
Hope this post finds everyone well! I find myself daydreaming about Peru, my home for most of the summer.
I was greeted by the peaks of the Andes Mountains, some capped with snow, others bubbling with hot springs, others carved with messages. I hardly had time to absorb the view from above before I was racing and swerving between the cliffs, stuffed in the backseat of a colectivo with a broken speedometer and blaring huayno radio.
That first colectivo foreshadowed many transportation adventures. I went to work in the trunk of a taxi, carried dark-eyed infants and fuzzy yellow chicks on my lap in an overstuffed bus, and drifted on one of the world’s largest lakes in a boat woven from reeds. Every journey and destination was singularly beautiful.
Each morning, I walked to the bus terminal to catch a ride from Urubamba to Chinchero. There, I taught English to 10 classes at Colegio Inka Tupaq Yupanqi. Some of my students will grow up to farm or become artisans; others hope to live in a city like Cuzco or Lima. Days were spent conjugating verbs and playing games to master vocabulary. Sometimes, I sang. Rihanna and Adele were favorites!
My friend Vicente hiked with me on a 12 hour pilgrimage up the peak Siqllakasa with thousands of Peruvians. Mass was held on the mountaintop as morning mist rose from the valley.
The highest point on Amantaní Island is the temple of Pachatata, or Father Earth. I climbed to the temple with Leigh of the United Kingdom, Erica of New York, and Britt of Denmark as sunset painted the still waters of Lake Titicaca. The dark clouds rolling in started spewing hail!
Machu Picchu at dawn is idyllic. Mist seems to emanate from the open temples, llamas peer through the fog on agricultural terraces, and the first rays of light slip between cracks in the mountains to illuminate a city that has stood remarkably intact for thousands of years. Waking up at 4:15 am was well worth it!
Interestingly, it was a Yale professor, Hiram Bingham, who shared Machu Picchu with the wider world. He first saw the site just over a hundred years ago, but now 2,500 people wander the paths each day.
I was lucky to spend time studying Quechua, the indigenous language of the Andes Mountains, and learning about the culture. I danced in festivals and visited sites such as Pisac, las Salineras, and Ollantaytambo.
Food in Peru is unbelievable. Would you like a leg of guinea pig? Or a bowl of raw ceviche? Or some alpaca steak?
Peru is full of flavor, full of color, full of history.
Love in many languages,
Yes, this is the title of a song from the show Grey Gardens, perhaps one of the most heartbreaking shows ever. Thankfully my parents did not trap me in my house (like in the show) and my summer has been amazing traveling “Around the World”
My summer vacation started at school where I got to produce a little show called Hair!. It was a mega-hit and was the most successful Commencement Musical in the past 3 years! If you missed it DVDs will be arriving whenever I decide to come to school :D
After spending a week recovering from the commencement process I headed up to San Fran to spend a week with one of my besties from San Diego. We happened to be invited to go to a baseball game with Mary, my other best friend Catie (Mary’s sister), and her sister’s friend. (I ate half of that pizza)
Then from there I flew to Hong Kong! I’ve been here with my family before, but only for about 4 days and it was 7 years ago. This time I’m all on my own though.
My apartment is on Hong Kong Island and I live on top of a mall and grocery store. Across the street is another mall. Life here is very convenient for me :D
My birthday is the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre so I went to Victoria Park to see the service. There were hundreds of thousands of people in this one park. It was a sad, but a very memorable way to spend my 21st.
I work for the Hong Kong Arts Festival doing interny things. It’s basically the best arts festival in Asia and they already have the programmes lined up for 2016 Festival. I’m able to learn a lot about the business even though I’m not handling super important stuff.
I took a long weekend to go to Thailand with some of the other interns here. 1) Thailand is dirt cheap. If your dinner costs more than 2 USD you’ve been scammed. 2) Their food is also really good. To be expected though. 3) Their massages are the craziest things ever. they massage every part of your body with every part of their body. Sounds weird? Well, the positions I was put in were weird.
Here is a picture of an amazing temple. The person posing is not a stranger. Her name is Julia and she’s a rising Junior at Yale.
Here are some “ladies” I met after a show. Well, it was their show. Because it was a ladyboy show.
Here is a picture of me jumping off of where the king’s throne used to be with a giant temple/tower in the background.
After I landed there was blood running down my chin. I treated myself for two days and had to get 5 stitches when I got back to Hong Kong. That was the first time I’ve ever been to a hospital!
Having a giant flesh wound didn’t stop me from going to the ABSOLUTE Ice Bar though where it’s -5 degrees Celsius! It was a Sunday night and we needed to drink before going out. We paid roughly $15 USD for 20 mins in this bar and received unlimited shots! I think my friend said he and I were averaging 6 shots a minute?
After the Ice Bar we went to something called a ping pong show. If you don’t know what that is…look it up online because I’m definitely not allowed to talk about it here.
Pictured below are the best things in the entire world. It’s one of the only things I actually know how to say in flawless Cantonese. They are “Egg Tarts” and the grocery store below my apartment makes them fresh all day long!
This is one of many outdoor exercise machines that they have in Hong Kong parks for old people. One might ask, “How could a wheel be exercise?” Well you put two hands on the knob and then spin the wheel as fast as you can! <3 my ancestors.
This is a picture of a secluded beach on Lamma Island, a 30 min. ferry ride from the Central Port on Hong Kong Island. The water was so clear and the water was super warm. I hiked with Andrew, my sister’s boyfriend from high school/Yale who was in Hong Kong on business, to the beach and even though it was super easy, it wasn’t as easy as the Hunter’s Beach hike we did up in Maine last year. There were also giant spiders every 10 feet.
Most recently we encountered a signal 10 typhoon, which is the highest level of tropical cyclones here in Southeast Asia. They haven’t had a signal 10 since 1999 I believe. It reminded me of when I lived in Florida and had to evacuate my house for hurricanes. Luckily I was perfectly fine and seeing how other cultures react to natural disasters is actually a really intriguing process.
ANYWAY, I’ll be back to the states in a week and I’m gonna stay with Steph for a couple of days and re-celebrate my birthday in New York style. Then I’m going up to Maine to hang with the fam. I’m planning on doing a 10 hour hike up the tallest mountain in Maine/end of the Appalachian Trail. I did it 10 years ago with my family in the rain so if I pick I good day I feel like it’ll be even better. I’m also planning to raft the Bay of Fundy with my Dad. The Bay of Fundy is in Canada and has the highest tides in the world. FUN TIMES.
Ggma’s 100th birthday is tomorrow. If you wanna email her just lemme know!
See ya soon!
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