This week started with attending my classes and going through my first two midterm exams since being abroad. It was considerably more difficult than the exams at my home university since the classes are at an accelerated pace and cover advanced topics. They were written exams that I worked extremely hard on and ended up receiving good grades for. They were essay-based questions about gender norms for one class and business management for my other course.
During the weekend, I got on a train for a small pitstop in Pisa. I was able to see the Leaning Tower and take some photos. It was really hard to get the angles right to take the silly pictures of me holding and kicking the tower over to be leaning. We ate pizza at the “Famoso Ristorante Pisano” and ordered Margherita pizza while we looked at the Leaning Tower of Pisa. My friends and I had some giggles saying we were eating a piece of pizza in Pisa. Try saying that three times fast!!! We walked through the markets and bought touristy t-shirts for keepsakes. We got back on another train to head to our next destination.
Closer to the very end of the week, I traveled to Cinque Terre. The colored buildings were beautiful, and the small business owners were working hard. I think this spot is an underrated place to visit in Italy. It is often overlooked but it was nothing short of stunning. It is so close to the coast and has such gorgeous views of Italy. We arrived and checked into our accommodation for the weekend. That evening, we went to watch the sunset at the beach and danced in the ocean. It is now a core memory of mine. We went to dinner in Monterosso, Cinque Terre. The next morning, we had brunch and got ready to visit the main photo spot of all the towns in Manarola Harbor. The colors of the city were absolutely stunning. We shopped around the towns and then went to Riomaggiore. We had to make sure we saw all 5 towns in one trip. My friends and I had a private boat tour of the 5 towns on the island. We got to jump off the boat and swim in the Ligurian Sea. The water was so blue and quite cold, but totally worth what we paid. I recommend it to any adventure seekers!
I think Cinque Terre was one of my favorite places I went to in Italy. The locals are just so nice, and the views are breathtaking. It felt like a dream. I have so many memories with my friends so I think it will be a memory I take with me forever. We watched Luca the Disney movie which is set in Cinque Terre so that was fun. We had a mini movie night while we ate carbonara pasta and face-timed and our called friends and family back home to stay in touch. Additionally, I think I learned a lot because they were a cash-based economy location which was interesting to experience. I am so used to having a credit card readily available for purchases, so this was a learning experience for me to realize how privileged I truly am. Overall, this trip was one for the books!