Saturday, April 28, 2012

Beach Day

The ultimate summer treat.
Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls... It's the moment we've all been waiting for... Summer has arrived! Well, at least it has in Italy! The weather is getting hotter than the new purse on display at Louis Vuitton (my birthday is only a couple months away, hint hint), and today was a whopping 27 degrees. So when Jeanny asked me if I wanted to spend the day at the beach with her, my immediate reaction was to pack my beach bag and head down to Ostia with her. Ostia is the beach in Rome that everyone flocks to between April and October, when the city is lingering with bus exhaust, millions of people, and humidity. Escaping to the sea was just what we needed, and apparently, hundreds of other people had the same idea.
This morning I grabbed the beach bag that came with the awesome purple bikini with the cool 
Jeanny and I at the beach. Note the
Italian flag wavering behind us.
print I bought here in Rome with my beach towel, reusable bottle of water, and some fruit. Jeanny and I met up at the train station where we stopped by the market before hopping on the metro and bought some cookies and paninis (tomato and mozzarella for me, salami for her). Unfortunately, I was an idiot when I got dressed this morning, and paired a long sleeve white shirt with Daisy Dukes and black leggings underneath. Clearly, I had seriously underestimated today's weather forecast. I knew that if I had wanted to survive the stickiness of the metro where people are packed tighter than sardines in a can, then I would have to shed some layers. Of course, the bathrooms cost 50 cents in the train station, and being the penny pincher that I am, Jeanny and I found a semi private area in the train station where I stripped down to my bathing suit bottoms and got changed. I don't think anyone saw, but as soon as I was done getting dressed while doubling over in laughter, I stuffed my leggings in my purse and we headed off. This taught me a truly valuable lesson - you can't really call a person your best friend until they've helped you get dressed in a busy train station.
After the metro ride was over, Jeanny introduced me to this incredible gelato shop (and I mean
incredible) that had really cheap prices and delicious flavours. On the way to the beach, I got blueberry and cotton candy. On the way back, I got watermelon and blueberry again. Although I've been super committed to my new workout regimen and healthy lifestyle I've been working on for the past couple of weeks, well... I hate to join the bandwagon as I seriously cannot stand this expression, but... YOITO. You're Only In Italy Once, right? Hopefully not once, but after June I don't know when I'll come back, and I feel responsible for enjoying this creamy treat as often as I possibly can.
What a day we had! We spent some time laying on the beach getting some colour, having girl talk, and admiring everyone else's choice in swimsuit wear for a few hours, sans sunscreen. BIG MISTAKE! I don't have any lotion left, and I got a bit of a sunburn. I feel like such a hypocrite for always lecturing my friends about how bad the sun is for your skin and how
you should take care of yourself. I feel ashamed for allowing myself to frolic on the beach without any form of SPF. 
Being the brave girls we are, Jeanny and I decided to jump into the sea. Oh, did I say jump? What I meant to say was timidly tip toe into the beach's edge where we screamed at the frigidness of the water. It wasn't so terrible, though. After a while it felt better, and the further we went out, the less cold we were. It's April, and I've already been swimming! Hopefully this sunburn will fade soon, because I'm supposed to go to a picnic at Villa Pamphili tomorrow.
Villa Pamphili is my European oasis. I've spent the past several days here jogging and working out. The park is massive and is filled with these cool trees that look like the ones from The Lion
King, and there are plenty of beautiful fountains to admire. Not only that, but there is also a beautiful pond with willow trees that is inhabited by swans and turtles. When Kelsey and I went for a jog together on Thursday morning, we literally saw dozens upon dozens of turtles there. There had to be hundreds. Most of them were average sized, but we saw a bigger one with a pointed nose that had to be a snapping turtle, and a mini baby who we called Piccolo (Italian for small). 
I'm also hoping my sunburn fades soon because I have my trip to London next Saturday, and Amsterdam the following Wednesday. I don't want to give people the impression that Canadians have pink skin, nor do I want to look like a flamingo in my pictures. It feels like everything is coming up so soon, and time really does fly when you're having fun. I have so much to look forward to, and it's hard to believe that in a week, I'm going to visit two new countries I've never explored before. This entire experience of mine has been so amazing, and for all of those who religiously read my blog, here's some exciting news for you...
THIS IS THE 100th POST!!! Thank you all so much for reading my work and showing interest in my experience abroad. I know it's not over yet, but I appreciate all of those who take the time out of their day to listen to what I have to say. Here's to 100 posts of the University of Life!


  1. Congratulations on your 100th post! A very good job done here in your blog!
    Enjoy the beautiful weather and have a great vacation! :)

  2. Thank you Agnes! I'll see you after the vacation!

  3. Congrats Michelle! And btw, love that bathing suit on you! :)