Rome is Where the Heart is.

Well this is it.

It has been one hell of a semester.

Yes, I do still have to blog about my trip to London and this past week (when my Mom and Uncle Ken visited me), but I have been so busy between finals and being Miss Tour Guide USA in Rome that I have not had time to blog. When I do post those, they will hopefully be below this one, so this will be my last post.

I came to Europe 108 days ago, not knowing what to expect. Prior to this, I had been out of the country once (to an all-inclusive resort, aka: an American colony). However, a little over a year ago, I decided that not knowing what I was missing out on (in traveling the world) was not a good thing. Yes, I didn’t know what I was missing out on, but in this case, ignorance was not bliss. As I have quoted once before, “The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page” (St. Augustine). So this is the end of my book, for now, but it already consists of chapters that no one else can understand.

Tomorrow I will be boarding a plane back home and my study abroad experience will be over.

I am so grateful for the experience I have had.
Over the past 108 days, I traveled from NJ to JFK Airport, over Canada to Dublin to Rome, where I then ventured to Vatican City, Tuscany, Pompeii, Sorrento, Capri, through Austria to Munich (Oktoberfest), Venice, Paris, Florence, laid over in Zurich, Switzerland, Amsterdam, laid over in Frankfurt, Germany, then went to London, and Paris again– not to mention all of the amazing places I have visited around La Cittá Eterna.  Counting the layovers, that’s 10 countries.

I have learned so much in each of these places, especially in Rome, where I have had the time of my life and have learned so much, academically, culturally, linguistically, and historically. I would like to thank my parents, grandparents, and family members who have all made it possible for me to have this experience.

Thank you, grazie, danka, merci, dank u, cheers, and gracias. No matter how many languages I can say “thank you” in, it cannot even express how grateful I am.

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Arrivederci, e ciao, Roma.

Baci.

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5 responses to “Rome is Where the Heart is.

  1. Dad

    “What is this salty discharge?” – Jerry Seinfeld
    To my wonderful and beautiful daughter whose return I anxiously await, you’re welcome, you’re welcome, you’re welcome. I could probably figure out how to say that in a few different languages through a google search, but the sentiment would still be the same. I am grateful for all the spectacular blog posts that had me traveling with you. You certainly took full advantage of your time overseas and I cannot be more proud of how you went about your travels, mixing in your education with having a good time while having “one hell of a semester.” You are the poster child for how a study abroad program should be done. I could not have asked for a better way for you to spend your time while in Europe; I think you accomplished most everything you set out to do, which will carry over to many other things in your life. I love you and miss you and look forward to your arrival back home.
    Love,
    Dad

  2. Aunt Kathleen

    Lauren,
    Thanks for taking me along on your experience. I loved reading your well written, informative and ultra descriptive posts! I am so happy for you. You recognized the opportunity you were given and you chose to make the most of it. I agree with Dad, you are the poster child for studying abroad. Your choices to not “sleep in” waiting for Rome to come to you, but going out and opening yourself up to all the experiences, cultures, foods, people, etc will be invaluable for years to come. You also wholeheartedly know the sacrifice your parents have made to provide you this incredible gift, and for that and much more, I am so proud of you.
    I can’t wait to see you and hear about all the stories that couldn’t be published! It has been a pleasure “watching” you have the time of your life. Our Rometown Hero!

    Love,
    Aunt Kathleen

  3. neil mcnulty

    Grammy & Grampy Everything that dad & Aunt Kathleen has posted is everything we feel too. You have made us very proud of all that you set out to do. We were happy to be included with your blogs. It was like you took us along with you. God bless you. Looking forward to your return home. Thank you . Love Grammy & Grampy

  4. Glad you all enjoyed it! I’m glad I could share it with you all!

  5. MaryPat Mannion

    Lauren,
    Your blog was amazing!! It looks like you had the best time ever and I am sure you learned many, many things in your travels!! Thanks for taking us all along on your journey!!

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