All good things must come to an end…

The world is a book and those who do not travel only read one page.
Saint Augustine

A semester abroad…..4 months, 18 weeks, 126 days and a million moments I will never forget.

My Facebook status 4 hours before leaving Florence:
As I spend my last few hours in Florence, I realize how cliche this all is; how students come here step out of their comfort zones, live and fall in love with this city. However, I know one thing and that is that these buildings may or may not last a thousand more years, but the memories and friendships that I’ve made will. Thank you everyone and fly safe. Keep in touch and expect a visit from yours truly. 

I didn’t think this status was that good. But as the likes accumulated and comments came I guess it was pretty good. These last few months have been more than extraordinary. The people I met and the sites I saw will forever be ingrained into my mind. The utter grandeur and amazing people I met will walk with me for a long time if not forever. Going abroad is such a temporary “thing” with such a lifelong impact. It’s kind of crazy. My status in retrospect is perfect in explaining it. Living in a foreign or at least my case, barely foreign place, alone, forces you to step out, forces you to do things you usually don’t. It makes you take initiative. Mom isn’t there to wash your clothes or make your bed or feed you or do groceries or anything. You have you, yourself and the people you meet. I’ve been trying and trying to grasp or put my finger on what it is that could, in one simple thought, describe studying abroad in its entirety and I just can’t.

I think the sites and images in your mind eventually disappear. Everything you saw, smelled and heard. All that fades away, hence why pictures are seen as so essential sometimes even though they never do the scene justice. But what doesn’t fade are the people. The people you meet abroad, whether local or other students, are literally growing as you are. The moments lived with them….will change you. Knowing all these people abroad and all over the US now, opens so many windows. Oh I’m in California, let me see what ______ is up to or hey I’m in Baltimore, I wonder if _______ wants to grab lunch or dinner. Even better, hey I’m going to visit ______ down in Charleston or the Cape for the weekend, ciao! I don’t know what you think but that’s awesome.

I mean, I’ve never been the type to get soft and sappy over things like this because people come and go in your life but this was different. It was so cliche and everyone saw it coming everyone knew it was going to happen. Millions of students that go abroad experience this but it happens anyways. I don’t know, maybe I am overdoing this but, who knows.

All I have to say is I’m more than grateful to have been given the opportunity to study abroad. More than grateful to have met the people I have met, do the things I’ve done and experienced what I’ve experienced. I wouldn’t have changed a thing. And I promise you I’ll be back. AND you best believe I’m planning some type of reunion. Already have a standing agreement with some of the boys that if one of us makes it one day we’ll reunite and buy a place out in Tuscany and open a club in Florence and put all the others out of business. Haha….one day. Nonetheless, I’m almost at a loss for words becuase it hasn’t all happened  or set in yet. Maybe there will be a part II of this post. Anyways, thank you for reading.

Alla prossima.

Ciao

M

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The Lives and Legacies of Catherine & Maria de Medici

 

If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.

Benjamin Franklin

If there is one thing that is, was and always will be constant between today and the time of the Medici, is that wealth is power and power is politics. However, talent in one does not mean talent in the other. What changed throughout the time of the Medici was exactly this. As extremely able bankers, the Medici sought power after three generations of successful, love fueled marriages. The marriage of Lorenzo the Magnificent to Clarice Orsini was the first of its kind and the turning point in Medici history. Besides the fact of Lorenzo’s extraordinary contributions to Florence and his family’s social position, the marriage was politically motivated. For the first time, the Medici family sought its power through marriage. This marriage signified the beginning of a political future for the Medici family as the Orsinis from Rome were wealthy and had blood in the Catholic Church. This change in direction would affect not only the Medici family, but eventually change the course of European history. Two results of this change were two French Queens, Catherine de Medici and Maria de Medici; both with rather interesting stories and a legacy that would transcend their time.

Catherine de Medici was born in 1519, great granddaughter to Lorenzo the Magnificent. Protected by Pope Clement VII, Lorenzo Duke of Urbino and Maddalena de la Tour d’Auvergne orphaned daughter Catherine, grew up to become a very powerful lady, Queen Consort of Henry II, son of King Francis I of France. However her early life was nothing of that of a typical queen. An orphan at a young age, Catherine lived in Florence when the Medici were not the most popular family in the city. In fact, after the invasion of Italy by the German barbaric tribes, many Florentines wanted to kill off the remaining Medici; which led Catherine into living in a convent most of her youth, hiding from the turmoil that was Florence. In addition to this, after her parents’ death she was passed from the care of Alfonsina to Clarice Orsini. This childhood formed Catherine a very resolute and cold character that would attribute to her legacy as Queen of France. After the restoration of order in Italy and Florence, Catherine stayed in Rome in the hands of Maria Salviati. But it was in Rome where under Pope Clement VII, she would marry by proxy, Henry of Valois the Duke of Orleans. The Duke of Orleans, was the second son of King Francis I of France. Her time thereafter in France was rather interesting. Unhappy with her husband and without the sympathy of the French people, Catherine was a one woman army. Miles away from home and any type of family, it is here that her childhood and character would distinguish her as a very strong woman. Catherine was a woman of sport; she loved hunting and very skilled with a bow (Catherine de Medici, Frieda). She complimented her sport equally with her knowledge in science and math as well being a more than generous patron to the arts. Catherine was not the most beautiful of women but wasn’t ugly. Her features were not abnormally displeasing and she was not absolutely stunning but what was always seen was her sinister appearance. In 1536, the heir to the throne died, Francis II, leaving Catherine’s husband, the next in line. As a mother, after nearly nine years of nothing and threat of divorce, Catherine bore ten children including three later French Kings; Francis II, Charles IX and Henri III. In 1547 however, the King of France died, Francis I, putting her husband in power over France. The next few years proved extremely trying for Catherine. Besides the death of her husband in 1558, she also had to deal with her husband’s mistress, Diana di Poitiers. However, after the death of her husband she became Queen Consort of France, a regent, because her son Charles’ young age. The years following her Queenship earned her the nickname, “Madame Serpent.” As one can probably guess, this was due to her political behavior as queen. Defending not only her, who was not French but nonetheless Queen of France but also her young son during a time of religious conflict.

The religious conflict in France would later be known as the French Wars of Religion that lasted from 1562 to 1598 between French Protestants and Catholics. This religious conflict translated directly into the politics of France, of which Catherine clearly had to deal with on a daily basis. While Charles IX was still king, Queen Catherine had arranged the marriage of her daughter Marguerite de Valois, to the Protestant Henry III of Navarre.  The wedding took place in Catholic Paris despite the Pope’s rejection of the marriage. A few days after the marriage, on St. Bartholomew’s Day, 1572, Admiral Gaspard de Coligny, a Huguenot leader and admiral, was murdered. The Admiral’s death spurred the killing of dozens of Huguenot nobles still in Parts after the wedding, and the rounding up and massacre of hundreds of other Huguenots in Paris and then throughout France.  The St. Bartholomew’s Day and subsequent massacres are regarded in history to be the work of Catherine. Historians point her motives to be that of obvious political power and stability. The resulting deaths and conversions of St. Bartholomew’s Day Massacre solidified Catherine’s son’s throne and diminished the political threat caused by the French Protestants. Protestant Henry III of Navarre became Catholic Henry VI of France, and when the half Medici Marguerite died, he married the full Medici Maria de Medici. Catherine later died in 1589 and was buried in Castle de Blois, where another Medici would one day reside (Catherine De’ Medici, Havemeyer & Malone).

Catherine’s tough youth and life was not only plagued with years of war and conflict but also self-reliance and struggle. Although one of the more prominent figures of the 16th Century, her legacy will go on as the same manner in which it was created, out of violence and hardship.

A later Medici daughter Maria was born in 1573 at the Florentine Palazzo Pitti, daughter of Francesco de Medici the Grand Duke of Tuscany and Joanna Archduchess of Austria. Maria also became Queen Consort of France by marrying the first French Bourbon King Henry IV by proxy, also known as the Protestant King of Navarre and then later, Henry IV Catholic King of France. Of her childhood, there was nothing very out of the ordinary for Maria other than the early deaths of both her parents. Similar to Catherine, she was orphaned at a young age and put into the care of other relatives. However, unlike Catherine she did not take to them as well. Her father, like many powerful men and Medici husbands had a mistress in which both her and her mother despised during her youth. Maria lived in Florence for the first 25 years of her life until she was sent off to marry Henry IV of France at the age of 18. Nicknamed “the foolish,” she as well was not particularly liked by the French people. However, unlike Catherine who was cultured and had a strong nature, she was uncultured and frankly unintelligent. Her figure was short and stubby with blond hair. She unfortunately had the characteristic bulging Medici eyes and with age she slowly became fat and inelegant, not a typical French Queen. Having another Queen from the Medici family made Florentines ecstatic, unlike their French counterparts. The French counterparts had reason to hate her though. She was known for spending outrageous amounts of taxpayer money for vanity and the famous artist she provided thousands in patronage to, Rubens.  During her time in France she became a puppet of two of her closest confidants. She was not the wisest of women and remained oblivious to Leonora Galigai and Concino Concini who were out for power but luckily never resulted in anything major (Brittanica). 1610 came with the assassination of Maria’s husband, leaving the throne to her son Louis XIII, who would then have to wait because he was only 9 years old. After the death of Henry, the queen became snappy, irritating and unappreciative. After getting even with Henry’s mistresses and various courtiers, and advised “unscrupulous Italian” Concino Concini and later the famous Cardinal Richelieu (Brittanica). Maria managed to overcome Henry’s death and overstay her regency to 1617. When son Louis XIII took over, Concini was assassinated, Richelieu became even more powerful as chief minister, and the half Habsburg half Medici Maria was exiled to Castle de Blois due to her political ties with the Hapsburgs and Spain. After two years in the Castle she allegedly escaped by rope with the help of her artist, Rubens. Later, with the help of Cardinal Richelieu she then reconciled with her son. Despising Cardinal Richelieu however, for being so close to her son she attempted a coup to remove him in 1630, but failed.  Her failure led to her exile for good to the Netherlands in 1631 as Bourbon France took on Habsburg Spain. However it was not here that Maria would leave her mark. Maria left her mark on history and her legacy in those that would come after her. Among Maria’s descendants would become the most famous Louis XIV, “Louis the Great,” “the Sun King,” who also became the longest reigning king in French history. In addition to Louis XIV, she would give birth to Elizabeth, later the Queen of Spain, Christine, later the Duchess of Savoy, Henry, later the Duke of Orleans, Gaston later the Duke of Orleans, and lastly Henrietta the later Queen of England. Her legacy unlike Catherine’s ended on a much higher note as her children would start long lineages of royalty all across Europe, coining Maria’s nickname as the “Grandmother of Europe” (Saward, 311).

The two Medici queens had many similarities and many differences. One can quickly see that both of their childhoods were one of sadness and hardship. They were both arranged to marry a man they had never met, that lived thousands of miles away. They both were shipped off, away from the little family they had left. It is quite possible that it is exactly their upbringing and youth that shaped them into the negatively connoted queens they are regarded as today. Both were not seen as fit queens and hated by the French people. Unfortunately as well, both queens were not regarded as the most aesthetically pleasing women either. In addition both of their husbands passed before them leaving them in power of one of the most powerful countries in Europe.

The queens’ differences are interestingly many. Although studied in a mostly negative light they both seemed to do a decent job of keeping France afloat and staying in power. However, Catherine was much more instructed, with both her mind and body she was a much better queen, especially under her circumstances. As a woman highly known for her wits and hunting abilities she presents a much more independent woman that simply fought back for not only herself but her sons. Maria on the other hand was not intelligent and actually let herself be manipulated by her confidants. She had no admirable skills that are ever mentioned and let her husband off with his mistresses. Although their upbringings may have been, with a few exceptions, very similar their time in Paris was not. They were two different French queens but very similar Medici women. In a way they were opposite ends of the spectrum in regards to their political life. Catherine was extremely involved, knew the court well and how to impose her will and push her agenda whereas Maria seemed to barely hold onto power. Then when her son came of age she was quickly sent away and basically kept away from any position of power. Their relationships with their sons were also very polar opposite. Catherine is depicted in literature and films such as 1994’s Queen Margot directed by Patrice Chéreau; where she is shown to be very affectionate to her sons and very family oriented. Whereas Maria was the absolute opposite in this respect, her son exiled her twice after her incompetence on the throne.

Nonetheless, one can see the utter differences and peculiar similarities between these two queens in their early years and their time as French royalty. However the main difference lies in their legacies. Although a better queen all around, it was the state of affairs she had to deal with that ultimately led to her violent and infamous legacy. Known by some to the extent of being a “Poisoner, besotted mother, despot, necromancer, engineer of a massacre: the stain on the name of Catherine de Medici is centuries old,” clearly demonstrated the more gruesome depictions of the Queen (Catherine de Medici, Frieda). Then on the other hand, Maria, the more incompetent queen who ruled rather poorly, ended up with the greater legacy thanks to not necessarily her intent but more so how her children wed after she passed. As much as the French may have despised the Medici queens and how poorly they represented Florence, but thanks to them Florentine blood would forever run throughout the bloodlines and history of regal Europe.

So what started as a move by Piero the Gouty and Lucrezia Tornabuoni to marry their famous son Lorenzo the Magnificent to a wealthy Clarice Orsini as an arranged consolidation of power, then served as a catalyst in the Medici family marriages. This trend of arranged marriages was not only spurred by the Medici success but also their ambition for power and prosperity. Their ambition succeeded, with a bloodline that can be traced to even modern day royalty, these two unanticipated Medici women’s legacies, made it possible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Works Cited

Frieda, Leonie. Catherine De Medici: Renaissance Queen of France. New York: Fourth Estate,    2003. Print.

Havemeyer, Janie, and Peter Malone. Catherine De’ Medici: “the Black Queen” Foster City, CA: Goosebottom, 2011. Print.

Saward, Susan. The Golden Age of Marie De’ Medici. Ann Arbor, MI: UMI Research, 1982. Print.

Queen Margot. Dir. Patrice Chéreau. Perf. Isabella Adjani, Daniel Auteuil, Virna Lisi, Jean-Hugues Anglade. Miramax Films, 1994. DVD.

“Catherine De Medici.” Catherine De Medici. History Learning UK, n.d. Web. 24 Nov. 2013.                  <http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/catherine_de_medici.htm&gt;.

“Marie De Medicis (Queen of France).” Encyclopedia Britannica Online. Encyclopedia Britannica, n.d. Web. 25 Nov. 2013.      <http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/365073/Marie-de-Medicis&gt;.

 

10 Days | 5 Cities | 4800 km

Ello folks. Hope all is well. Just dropping in again.

Two weeks ago now I finished my 10 day 5 city tour of Western Europe. 42 hours of bus and 4800 kilometers later and I’ve seen more than 99% of the world has. This is going to be a brief overview of everything I did and saw with a little of my 2 cents of each city. My trip started in Berlin. Berlin was very unique. The mixture of history and German modern architecture/fine engineering made Berlin so memorable. One of my first stops was the historical Reichstag which for a long time in German history simply represented a false promise of democracy. The phony parliamentary building was barely put to actual use during its early years when Germany was still ruled by monarchs. It was used slightly during the Weimar Republic but then was burned down and bombed during the rise of Nazi Germany. During the reconstruction of Berlin after World War II it was reconstructed with meaning and symbolism. It now stands with a steel and glass dome. In this building now, visitors can freely walk up and around the dome, which is situated directly above the elected German parliament. A symbol not only of transparency but also the people standing over the government. This is just a taste of this historical but modern Berlin. Other than that, I visited the Brandenburg Gates, the Holocaust Memorial, Checkpoint Charlie, the Berlin Wall and a myriad of other memorials, gardens and monuments. To sit here and give you a history lesson would be boring and lame so if you’re that interested, let me know and I’d be glad to fill you in. Berlin and most of northern Germany in general has a big rave and metal scene. Your stereotypical guys in black skinny jeans, chains and ridiculous Mohawks are common pedestrians. Likewise goes for nightclubs, they’re your typical stone arch basements with sketchy huge bald bouncers. We went to the most well known club in Berlin named Matrix. Entry is sort of hard but we managed. Place is pretty big. On a packed night, all 7 dance floors are shuffle room only,no room for the Holy Spirit out here boys and girls, and every room is playing a different genre of music. Pretty sick and a must if you can in Berlin. Nonetheless prepare yourself for a good time & try to stay away from the insanely attractive hookers.

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My next stop was Amsterdam. Amsterdam was one of a kind, filled with thousands of canals, it is a unique city. With an aspect of magic and beauty with a splash of mischief in its coffee shops and Red Light District. It’s one of a kind and for stories, you’ll just have to ask me in person. Amsterdam I noticed had an interesting demographic as well, I’m  assuming because it’s government is so tolerant and opens its arms to refugees seeking asylum because I felt like a Dutch person was 1 in 6 people I saw. Possibly due to being in the more touristy areas of the city, nonetheless, just an observation. Last note about Amsterdam, definitely visit the Heineken factory and don’t be out in the Red Light too late, scene gets sketchier than it already may seem. Overall, great impression. Its Europe’s city of sin.

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After the mischief of Amsterdam we headed out for Brussels. The center of the European Parliament, the grand palaces, Belgian waffles and their renown pommels frites (since saying French fries wouldn’t make any sense in Europe). Brussels was everything I expected. Clean, wealthy with a whisk of sophistication in the air, everything you’d expect from a country stuck in between France and Germany, the best of both worlds.

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My trip only spent half a day in Brussels, plus everyone was anxious for Paris. So that afternoon we shipped off to Paris. After another long and uncomfortable bus ride, we arrived in Paris. We stayed in the Montmartre quarter and to my surprise the bus dropped us off literally right in front of the famous Moulin Rouge. Montmartre is an interesting neighborhood, originally not even a part of Paris it sits on a hill with a beautiful white church (Sacre Croix) on top. From that church you had a beautiful view of east Paris. In Paris I visited Notre Dame, many of the palaces in the city, the famous lovers bridge covered in locks, of course the Eiffel Tour, the Louvre, the Arch of Triumph, the famous Champs Élysées, all of the gardens in between and Versailles. Knowing I wouldn’t have enough time to calmly see the Louvre, I decided to leave that for another time, figuring I wouldn’t do it justice if I rushed through it. Versailles however was impressive, it’s immensity and grandeur was as expected. I was impressed more with the gardens than the actual structure. Versailles interior has been renovated several times, with the possible exception of the famous bedrooms of King Louis, his queen and mistresses. So a lot of the inside simply didn’t seem original. My favorite room was the Hall of Battles, a long hall with huge paintings of Napoleon’s battles. Lastly I noted that the city of Paris, more so the city center, is extremely clean but as soon I stepped outside of the city, that standard completely disappeared. Oh and one more, you wonder why they picked a rat to be the animal cooking in Ratatouille? Because in Paris these things are everywhere and they’re f-$&/&:?! huge. I fed a few under the Eiffel Tour and my God they put New York’s to shame.

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Next stop, Barcelona. Off to the Catalan hub and home of Lionel Messi. After doing the walking tour of Barcelona, seeing the Olympic Park, Gaudi’s Segrada Familia, the Gothic District and all the sites, we had some free time. I ate paella for lunch and hung out by the port and beach, it was much hotter than I expected but it didn’t matter, I was in Barcelona. I wasn’t sure what to expect of Barcelona but it surely didn’t let me down. The first night we went out to a couple well known bars and ended up at club Opium right on the beach, the place was awesome(warning, the drinks are 10-15€ right off the bat so heads up) but the DJ absolutely killed it. We literally couldn’t leave the dance floor because the next song was always the best. It was absurd, we were out until 7 am where we then exited the back of the club and sat on the beach to watch the sun come up. Got back to the hostel around 8:30 and passed out until 2ish. Woke up and had a day to ourselves. I got up and checked out the port a little more but then got in contact with an old high school buddy studying there in Barcelona. Lucky for me, I come to find out il Classico was going on that night, in Barcelona! I don’t use exclamation points that much but, it was a big deal. After meeting my buddy studying there we went to a bar, grabbed an early table and watched the biggest rivalry game in Spain surrounded by Barca fans. It was glorious, granted I wasn’t at the stadium, it was still great. I mean when the game at the bar you’re at is on a projector and there are people on the second floor leaning over the balconies waving Barca flags and cheering, that’s as close as you can get without dropping €350 on a ticket to actually go to the game. However, final result, Barcelona 2 – Real Madrid 1. With one questionable non call for Cristano Ronaldo in the box, Barca fans got away with a 2-1 win over their rivals over in Madrid. After the win we all went to Piazza Catalunya to celebrate. Slightly partial to Barcelona I joined right in. It was unbelievable, wouldn’t have changed a thing. Good company good time, great timing.

 

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And that was my night, called it an early one after stopping in at a bar with a couple of my roommates and then got up for the last 12-15 hour voyage back to Florence.

 

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There you go, a small taste of my fall break. Hope you enjoyed it.

Thanks for reading.
Stay classy

M

Ciao Bella

Giorno 24

Well this is long overdue, but better late than never I suppose. I’ve been very sluggish in getting this ball rolling. I haven’t been in the writing mood where I just need to document this shit stuff. Its almost like taking pictures. Sometimes the camera just can’t fully capture what your eyes can and all you can do is surrender yourself to the moment and take it in.

Well in a unnecessary metaphor, that is how my time here in Florence has been. There has been so much that has already happened and so much going on, even getting the time to write is a commodity. I’ve probably walked more than I ever have in my life, spent the most money I ever have in my life and started one of the most interesting times of my life.

My first trip was to Cinque Terre and Pisa. As my family has always told me, if you go to Pisa, go to the tower, take a look around, and leave. It’s no Rome trust me. And the crazy thing is, after all the architects had accomplished back then you’d think they would’ve mastered the level and or checking out the land before building over huge deposits of water, hence why everything at the tower is out of plumb. Then on the other hand they could’ve just been drunk and not cared so then again if that was the case, well played gentlemen you inadvertently created one of the most well known monuments in Italy. Cinque Terre was as expected, a smaller, less populated and a uniquely beautiful version of the Amalfi Coast. Cinque Terre was the epitome of a small Italian coastal town smack up on unbelievable cliffs that reminded me of the images in Jurassic Park of the Galápagos Islands.

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My second trip was to San Marino, Riccione and the Misano World Circuit, now known as MWC Marco Simoncelli, named after the amazing young rider that died recently. I went to see the MotoGP on Sunday and to see my dude Valentino “il Dottore” Rossi 9x World Champion ride again. Although he didn’t race like he did last time I saw him in Indianapolis, it was awesome being there on home turf. I don’t know what it is about it but hearing the bikes and watching them fly around the circuit is just awesome. Loved every minute and made me want to ride so bad.

That definitely is a huge craving I’ve had since I got here. I’ve wanted to ride anything on two wheels, even a bicycle and its so frustrating.

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So, now to everyday matters, old business. Life in Florence is interesting. I’ve never seen such a diverse population in my life, between tourists, immigrants living here now and street vendors, it’s ridiculous. I’d say even more diverse than New York City. There are literally like 15 different languages being spoken in Florence at any given time. The ambulances are so goddamn annoying, there are condom dispensers built into buildings like vending machines, I’m convinced the street vendors are being forced to sell the same annoying useless shit because nobody in their right mind would be selling the same shit the guy next to him is, like where’s the competitive advantage chief? I want to know who the hell is the supplier of all this nonsense because they’re making a killing, like where do you get roses every morning? I don’t see a big warehouse full of roses anywhere around here. And there are small closet like stores with random stuff from floss to your latest edition of Playboy, toilet paper, or fine Italian cheese or wine; I’ve now labeled these as 7/11s because I have yet to find one without an Indian employee. They formally have no name, simply “Cold drinks, beer, whiskey, aqua, pasta, wine, cigarettes” is always somewhere on their windows. So, 7/11 it is. There’s your shutout Singh.

I was lucky with my roommates, we are all different. And not to sound corny but I like that because you always need a dude with a third nut or something that’s gonna be the wild card and do we have some wild cards. With the apartment, not so lucky, great location, however too far from the rest of civilization, I call our apartment the IKEA apartment because it is the most bush league Mickey Mouse household I’ve ever had the pleasure of living in. Pot has a hole in it, faucet just falls off, fans don’t work, get replaced and last a week, broken again, shower has a door but instead someone decided a metal quarter inch cable with a shower curtain is much more chic, none of the appliances in the kitchen work and for some reason we have more security on the inside of the house when we’re home than when we leave because there are approximately 5-7 different dead bolts or chains, whatever.

Nightlife is pretty sweet. We’ve made some great friends and met some wild people that ill always remember. And a lot of people that one day I’d love to treat the same way they’ve treated us. It’s interesting how all the places split up the week, there’s never one solid place you can usually go and it’ll be good. You always have to know where the flow is.

School is school, always will be. Reading writing etc. classes are all good and interesting. I’m starting to notice some of the classes are overlapping now and it’s interesting to see how you can bring something from one class to connect to the other and seem outlandishly smart. Unfortunately I have a couple classes that are filled with airheads that either talk but never say anything or nobody answers the teachers questions and create the worst, most painful pauses when nobody raises their hand and I’m always that guy because nobody wants to put themselves out there. Like c’mon who cares if you’re wrong, you seem like more of a douche sitting there looking at the teacher like you just shit your pants or awkwardly avoiding eye contact like you just saw your ex. I feel like I developed that mentality thanks to BC High, literally never gave a shit about what people would think by answering the question and avoiding the painful silence of stupidity.

Nonetheless, anywho, comunque, hopefully ill be traveling a lot more soon. I have intentions of going to Munich for Oktoberfest, Croatia, London, Prague, Barcelona, Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Amsterdam, and hopefully Copenhagen along with a couple domestic visits to family and friends. If anyone wants to come or meet up let me now, I’ll shoot you my tentative calendar. I know it’s ambitions but how many more times may I have the opportunity to do it? I don’t know maybe ill have ten more chances but I’m sure as hell going to make sure I don’t regret it.

Thank you for reading if you’ve made it this far. Tip my hat to you, thank you, grazie.

Ill be posting again soon.

Cheers & Ciao Bella.
M