Sunday, May 29, 2011

Flight back home to NY tomorrow. Final Post..

I've spent my last 2 weeks in Newcastle relaxing and exploring the city since when I head back to Long Island reality sets in immediately. Tomorrow, my day will begin at 11am where I will set off for the metro. After a 20 minute train ride I will arrive at my first airport, Newcastle International. This is one of the scarier moments of the day because I will be told if either of my suitcases are overweight! I gave away a lot of clothing and threw out a bunch of stuff yet they still feel heavy! I'm taking an hour flight to Heathrow and then have 2 hours to rush around and get to my next flight. This consists of - getting off the plane, getting my suitcases, taking a tram to a different terminal, checking-in, going through security and getting to my gate. I've done it once before so I have faith I'll be able to do it again. Let's just pray my first flight isn't delayed... Once at my next flight I have 7 hours and 55 minutes until I land in New York and then a 45 minute drive home! 14 hours of travel.. yikes...

It has been the most fabulous, exciting, rewarding and craziest 5 months of my life. If anyone has the chance to study abroad I highly recommend they go for it. I want to personally thank Stony Brook & Northumbria University for allowing me this opportunity.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Not your typical Spring break.. London, Paris, Barcelona, Milan


All assignments have officially been handed in (3 assignments, no exams.. the least stressful finals week of my life) and my last 2 weeks in England have officially and quickly came upon us. Before I get depressed I need to discuss the fabulous 3 week spring break I just had (AKA it ended 17 days ago.. but feels like just yesterday!)

I started my break staying at uni. Everyone had gone home and rather than rushing to get out of here, I stayed behind to do some work. I knew there was no way I could get essays done while jetting around Europe so I did as much as I could. After being stuck here for 5 days and being slightly scared to go to the bathroom at 1am, I took a train to Yorkshire. Yorkshire is the home of all good things like Yorkie's, Yorkshire Pudding, and my boyfriend, Steven. Rather than being stuck here for a week before going to London he invited me to his house for 4 nights. It was actually nice to be in a house rather than stuck in one room all day like my dorm. We did a day trip to a town nearby named Hull. They had two very nice malls (something from home I miss) and it was nice to see another different part of England.

I arrived on Wednesday and by Sunday Steven and I were on a 2 hour train to meet my sisters, Krista and Kerri in London. They planned this trip when they found out I was studying abroad. My mother and sisters have never been out of America so I'm glad they got to see London and visit me. We spent the week galavanting around London (my third time to the city). I love NYC, but the more I visit London the more I love it. Upon the exciting things we did, we met Tim Curry while out to dinner. Who doesn't love him in Home Alone 2 and Rocky Horror Picture Show? My sister recognized his voice when we were getting our coats so when we were leaving the restaurant I had the sudden urge to tell him I love him. Luckily, he is a nice man and told me he loved me right back. Ha! Steven left on Tuesday because we had tickets to see the show Wicked at night. It was SO good and we were all so glad we got the chance to see it because we never have while in NY.

On Thursday, we did a day trip to Paris. We had minor panic attacks because the tube wasn't running and the hotel (who told us they could get us a cab at 4am) was having difficulties hailing one. After a while, and £20 later, we took the Eurostar to Paris. In my opinion, I didn't really like it. I loved seeing the city because it was very beautiful, but I wasn't that impressed. Also, some people were nasty and I felt so uncomfortable not knowing the language. It was nice to go in the Eiffel tower, but I don't plan on going back. I also feel other cities are much more romantic so I don't get what all the fuss is about. Who knows.. I'm so thankful I got to make the trip though!

On Saturday, after a week with my sisters, I left for Milan. I have a friend from fashion school (I got my Associates at LIM before transferring to Stony Brook this fall) who was studying in Italy for the semester. I really wanted to see at least some part of Italy before I left so I went to visit. I was only in MIlan for a night before we left for Barcelona for 4 days.

Barcelona, Spain was one of my favorite cities I've been too! Not what I expected at all though! It was a beautiful city with so much to do and see. Just like in Paris, we bought tickets for the Hop on, Hop off bus. Although the weather wasn't the best, We still had some sun and tons of time on the top of the bus with the top down. We stuck our toes in the Mediterranean Sea and rode a cable car to a castle. We had so much fun and were sad to leave. After Barcelona, I had two more days left in Italy. We spent the days shopping, cooking and eating. I was forced to buy an Italian Leather handbag and learned that even it's the store brand, in Italy it is so delicious. I was sad to say bye to Sarah, but also so ready to get home to Newcastle. I flew back to London (the day of the royal wedding) which wasn't as insane as you would think it would be. I took the tube for an hour directly from Heathrow airport to Kings Cross train station for a direct, 3-hour train to Newcastle. There happened to be a stag party (bachelor) in my car and it cost me £50, but I didn't care because I was at the point of exhaustion. I traveled for 3 weeks non-stop with just a little suitcase.. and a new italian handbag.

Since it's now the last 13 days abroad I'm doing nothing except relaxing, shopping and spending time with my boyfriend and other british friends. I'm dreading packing and spending 12 hours traveling back home, but it will be nice to get back to my friends, family and hectic lifestyle. Time to do more relaxing.. last post shall be coming soon!


Outside a Cathedral in Milan.
On our Cable Car back down in Barcelona.
Real Gelato in Italy!
Icebar in London with the sisters!
Eiffel tower!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Sorry.. just been traveling around Europe!

I apologize for this VERY delayed blog post. During the first week in April I set off on my 3 week Easter Break. I took this opportunity to spend 5 days at my British boyfriend Steven's house (don't ask), a week in London & a day in Paris with my two older sisters, 4 days in Barcelona, Spain and 4 days in Milan, Italy. I returned back from all this adventuring to the madness of the Royal wedding in London, but quickly got the next train out to Newcastle. It was all far too fun.. Now, it is time to finish out the semester. I have 3 essays totaling 2,000 , 2.500 and 3,000 words each all due next week. I'm halfway done with all of them! However, instead of procrastinating more by writing about all my adventures, I'm going to save this post for when they are all completed. It's insane to me that in 25 days I will be on my flight back to New York after nearly 5 months away. Here are a few images to tide you over until continue blogging...