As my semester comes to an end I realized I have neglected my blog. Not just neglected, I completely abandoned it. I realized how bad it was when I couldn’t even remember the web address to my own blog and I had to have wordpress send me my password. That was when I knew I abandoned it. Then I thought this probably isn’t a big deal because people probably don’t have time to read my blog anyways, right? wrong. Even though I have not posted anything for over 40 days ( I guess I am I past the point where I can use the excuse I gave up blogging for lent) I still had views! So, I decided one last blog was needed for those of you who still check this thing! Just so you know I wrote most of this when I was half asleep and I also don’t plan on fixing spelling errors so don’t say you weren’t warned!
Here is an update on my life since I last blogged.. or at least the main points! Ready? GO!
I think one of my proudest accomplishments is learning how to spell Mediterranean on the first try. It is harder than you think.
We went to Turkey! It was probably one of the highs of my trip. Not only is Turkey in both Europe and Asia, it is BEAUTIFUL! If you haven’t talked to me or heard from me since my last blog, my papers have consumed my life. Luckily two of my papers were on Islamic art and architecture, which I saw a lot of in Turkey. This made my papers more interesting to write. Note that I did not say easier or more fun. I do not think I will even be able to use those words when describing my papers. Although, I was able to learn a lot more than I thought I would when I was writing them. Anyways, enough about my papers! Here are a few of my favorite pictures from Turkey!
After Turkey we had a weekend in Gozo, one of the smaller islands of Malta. Here are some pictures from Gozo!
Some of us went to the James Blunt concert! Oddly enough, it was the same night Jason Derulo was at Luther!
SICILY! As a group we took the ferry to Sicily for the weekend. We went to Syracuse, Taormina, and “climbed” Mt. Etna. I say “climbed” because we did go pretty far up, but we were driving the entire way up. So besides the times we got out of the car and wondered around for a bit, we didn’t do much climbing. Here are some pictures from Sicily!
Some of us also went to a wine tasting at Marsovin. The tasting was set up by our local bartender Simon! Too bad he wasn’t able to make it!
Field Trips! Im pretty sure we have had three since the last time I blogged. One was back to Gozo with Father Farrugia, our Christianity professor. He brought us to St. George’s Basilica where he was the high priest for 10 years!
The second field trip was to see a Good Friday procession.
The last field trip of our Malta envirnoment field trip. For those of you who don’t know, Malta is pretty much a rock in the middle of the Mediterranean. There is not much of an environment here. We went to the only “forest” in Malta. Although I was happy to be around trees and plants for once, it is nothing in comparison to Minnesota.
Okay, I may have lied.. we went on one more field trip. St. John’s Co-Cathedral. It is the church built by the Knights of St. John. This is another thing about Malta I probably know more about than I would like. I came to the sad realization that I know more about Malta’s history than the United States. So, if you have any questions about Malta, I am the seven students here would have NO problem answering it. Here is a picture from St. John’s.
SPRING BREAK! Abby and I went to France! We don’t speak French! It was a little difficult at times, but for the most part we manage to make our way around. We did stay at a really sketchy place the first night though. We found this place on airbnb.com. Anyways, it was cheaper than a hostel and close to the train station. Great. Not. We stayed with a man named Sess, his girlfriend Camille, and there one year old daughter, Tess. First, I think they might have been younger than us. Second, after we went to bed at 10:30, they went out with their one-year-old until 12:30. They brought their baby along with them to go out drinking with friends! After they got back Tess cried a good majority of the night. Did I mention they had cats? Well they did. Abby and I both woke feeling misreable. We got ready, wrote a note, took a banana, and got the heck out of there! It may not sound that bad, but if you look at the pictures from the place and the surronding ares you would understand. Is it the smartest choice we have ever made? No, but it was an experience! From there we took a train to Aix Les Bains and stayed with Abby’s aunt for a few nights. It was wondering, beautiful, and relaxing. Her aunt was very welcoming and showed us around. We ate lots of delicious food that was traditional for the area. Did I mention Aix Les Bains is in the mountainous area of France next to a really pretty lake? If I wasn’t missing trees and lakes already, I was at that point. I mean Malta is great being by the sea and everything, but nothing beats the land of 10,000 lakes! Anyways, Aix Les Bains might be a little better than Minnesota.. I mean they do have the mountains. After saying goodbye to Abby’s aunt and uncle we caught our train back to Paris for our jam packed day of tourism. We saw the Louvre… this is partially a lie. We saw the outside. We never actually went inside. The line was RIDICULOUS, and we both would have rather gone to the Orsay Museum. This ended up being a smart desicion on our part as we loved Orsay. Anyways, we also walked the Champ Elysees, saw the Arc de triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, and went to the Orsay Museum. I can’t post anymore pictures because my internet is being slow.. if you are my facebook friend you can see them..
ESPANA! Kristi, Whitney, Abby, and I went to Valencia the weekend before our papers were due! Maybe not the best timing, but how can you pass up a 22 euro round trip flight?! Anyways, Kristi found us a really nice time share to stay in, but they didn’t really speak English. Being the only one who really knew Spanish (Whitney knew some, which was very helpful when I got nervous.. if you know me well enough you know I get chocked up when having to speak in Spanish.. or any language barrier for that reason) I had to rely on what I remembered to get around. The funniest part was when we got locked into our room. No, not locked out, locked in. So, I had to figure out how to explain that to the security guard in my broken Spanish. He eventually came and let us out, and then our landlord moved us the the penthouse! Highlights of Valencia: Tapas, the aquarium (its the largest in all of Europe), and the beach! Overall relaxing girls weekend!
We finished up at Hal Far a couple weeks ago. One of my students told me he would never forget me and that what we did there was really important. This actually meant a lot, as going to Hal Far every week stressed me out. First, I don’t do well with language barriers and second I never knew if what I was teaching was actually helpful. Although having to teach English made me very uncomfortable at times, this conversation made the whole time we were there worth it.
Okay, I think I am done. I have more I could share, but not enough time! I never thought leaving would be so bittersweet. Even though I have loved writing about my last few months in Malta, I think I should go out and enjoy my last night here! See everyone soon!
I MADE IT!