In the words of my house mate, Bridget Walsh, who kept an exact journal during our extended weekend:
This morning Cynthia, Cadence, and I got up at 7 to get ready for our trip to Cinque Terre.We left the house at 8:45 to catch the tram.We had to run to catch the Tram and then when we got off the Tram we saw the bus we needed Bus 40 leaving so we decided to get some breakfast at the shop across from the BNL atm, after getting money out to pay Cadence for this weekend.We didn't get on the 40 Bus until about 9:45 so we were all freaking out since our train was leaving at 10:09.The parade was going on today for the national holiday so it took forever to get to the train station.We got to the train station about 10:02 and ran the entire way to our train and got on it at 10:09.I was lucky because the man accepted my ticket on my phone otherwise I would have been screwed.There were no seats on the damn train anywhere so we sat in a section in between two cars and talked to a lady who is from Italy and had just worked for Disney Cruise as a hostess for the past year.She was so happy to talk to us because she got to practice her english, which she doesn't get to do much at home.Then the next stop so many more people got on, there were easily 14 of us crammed into this little space.One lady was older and really tan, her make-up was scary!Her lipstick & lip liner went outside the actual line of her mouth.Then finally an hour into the train people started getting off so about 30 mins after that we all had seats.Cadence and Cynthia were sitting on one side of the train and I was sitting on the other with 3 men, a father and 2 sons.When the 3 men got off Cadence and Cynthia moved to my section.Cadence and I napped since the train ride was over 4 hours long.
We had a 2 hour layover in Pisa so we walked to the leaning tower of Pisa and took pictures.Cadence and Cynthia wanted to climb to the top but I wasn't feeling it so I sat with the bags while they went to check it out.Since it cost money and was a guided tour they decided not to do it.So then we went back to the train station and got pizza for lunch and bought snacks for the train.Cynthia burped while eating and some older man gave her a nasty look, it was kind of funny.We got on our next train, to La Spezia and had the whole car to ourselves, well there was one other guy but that doesn't really count.There was a girl going around handing out fliers that read something about having 2 brothers and not having money or a home so asking for money.A guy had given us something similar on the last train so we just ignored it.When she came back to see if we would give her money and when we said no she tried to take Cynthia's coke!Then she tried to take my Pringles but I saw what she tried to do to Cynthia so I took them before she really reached for them.When she looked at you, she wasn't really looking at you, it was strange.Then we almost got off at the wrong La Spezia stop but the man in our carriage helped us.The whole time I was taking pics of the landscape and the ocean as we passed.Then we got on the train to Monterosso about 5 mins later.
Once in Monterosso we walked down the boardwalk and found an entrance to the beach.Cadence and I walked across the rocky/gravelly beach down to the water and put our feet in.We climbed up on a rock to get a better view.I took tons of pictures and then Cadence and Cynthia decided to climb a wall of searocks just to climb it and see the view.After taking tons of pics of them, including Cynthia climbing down and flashing her underwear we started walking back to the street.We walked up one random street but decided it wasn't really leading anywhere so we turned around to go back to the main road we had been on.We looked at the map of the 5 cities/towns and then decided to follow a path that went along the water to the next town.We stopped in a little cove where some people docked their boats to put our feet in the water as we sat on some steps.Cadence saw a bunny and decided to pet it.Cynthia was so mad and ranting about how it could have rabies and how could Cadence touch something filthy like that.The bunny was super cute and had long hair and was grey.I had Cadence's camera and thought I was recording but unfortunately I wasn't.It was hilarious though Cynthia was yelling at Cadence about how unsanitary it was and how she wasn't going to touch her again.Cadence was just in love with the bunny and petted it but it wouldn't let her pick it up.After the bunny we walked up the street and went into a jewelry and clothes shop and then a grocery store where I bought batteries since mine were dying.The man working in the grocery store was super nice and told me when I dropped some change.Then we followed the path up some hills by going up steps.It was a pretty view but a loooong walk.Then when we finally were leaving Monterosso and starting to head toward the next town we ran into a couple saying the way was gated off and apparently you needed a pass or a ticket to walk the trail, so we turned around.We sat on a bench and watched the water for awhile because our backs hurt from carrying our backpacks all day.
We walked down the street looking at the restaurants for dinner.We finally stopped at a restaurant that was connected to the Baia hotel.I got mussels (prepared just like mom's), Cynthia got spaghetti, Cadence got ravioli, and Cadence and I shared some bruschetta (which was really like garlic bread).Our server had dreads and was super nice.Cynthia and I made fun of Cadence for sitting up straight all the time.Then we really made fun of her when we found out she had never seen: The Macy's Day Parade, The Olympics, the ball drop (until last year), or the dog show on Thanksgiving.So we said we would show them all to her on youtube or something.
After dinner we walked down the street to where cabbies pick people up.The cabbie said it would be 100 Euros to take us to where we needed to go and it would be 50 Km away.The town is only 18 Km away so I have no idea what he was talking about.He told us to just go buy train tickets.So we went to the train station, bought some train tickets but the train wouldn't be there for another hour n a half.So we went and sat in a cafe where I had my 1st Cappuccino and we just sat for an hour.Then we went back to the station and waited for the train.We just sat around and talked, our train was 15 mins late so that was annoying.Once on the train we all almost fell asleep since we were sitting down and just so tired.Cynthia kept hitting me to keep me awake.30 mins later we finally made it to Monaglia, the town we are staying in for the night.We had no idea where to go from the train station so just started walking.We ran into a couple and asked them.They were in the town on holiday and didn't know but the lady said she saw a theater with the same name so to go toward that.On our way we stopped in a restaurant and asked a man who worked there.He said we looked really tired and then said, well, you have to get back on the green metro line and then...we all groaned and he just laughed because he was playing with us!!Then he told us we weren't far at all we just needed to walk to the end of the street.He asked where we were from and we talked to him for a few minutes about how everyone in the country was so much nicer than in the city.He said it's b/c to be nice is in their bones haha.So we have decided to just hang out here tomorrow until we have to get on the train to catch our train to Venice.When we got to the hotel no one was in the lobby so we were annoyed but Cynthia found her outside.We finally got in our room, the lady gave us water bottles and a hair dryer.Our room/apartment is really nice.We have a small kitchen, and a deck.It's a cute one bedroom, one bathroom, and small kitchen/family room.We are waking up around 9 or 10 tomorrow to shower and then check out is at 11.Tomorrow shall be interesting.
This morning we wake up and find out that our room looks out at the ocean and can see the mountains!It was so pretty!We all showered and then Cadence and I took pics of the room we had, the deck, and the ocean.We checked out from the hotel and started walking.We decided to go up to see the ocean which was beautiful and had sand instead of rocks.On our way back to the train station we saw the man who helped us find our hotel last night.His wife and child had stopped by or walked with him to work, which ever, and the baby boy was gorgeous!!! So we talked to him for a few minutes and then we walked to the train station.We caught a train to Riomaggeria and found out that there was a train strike today until 5 and that one of the trails was closed so we would have to go back to the next town to start a walking trail.But then we found out how long it would take to do each of the trails so instead we went to Vanazza by train.On the train we got busted for not having tickets and I had to pay a 51.60 euro fine because I paid for me and Cynthia because a woman gave Cadence her extra ticket.Then when he left Cynthia told me she want to cuss me out for paying the 50 euro fine for the 1.60 euro ticket.She was pissed at me and all I could say was "you know what I paid for you too", she pissed me off sooooooo much!!So we are walking around Vanazza since we decided to take a boat taxi to Monterosso and I started crying b/c she pissed me off so much and I was upset about getting a ticket.So naturally I was not happy with Cynthia for the rest of the day.
We got gelato that made me a little better and then we walked around the town and they both went into a ton of stores and I just waited outside each one.We went into one store that was run by 2 ladies from California that someone from ISA told Cadence and Cynthia about.They both bought jewelry from there.Then we walked back to the bay area to catch the boat.We waited there for about 20 mins in this huge crowd of people waiting to get on the boat taxi.We didn't make it onto the 1st one but I was 1st onto the second boat taxi.It was only about a 10 min ride.Right after we all sat down on the boat it started to down pour.So Cadence and I agreed that we were happy we weren't walking the trails in the storm.At the train station it took us almost an hour to get our tickets b/c the man's computer was down so it created a huge line.We finally got our tickets at 4:45 so we had 10 mins to get food and then get on the train.We got pizza from the bar and I got a Magnum bar and a sprite.
The train ride from Monterosso to Milan was 3 hours.We sat down in 1st class at first and then figured it out and went to 2nd class.We sat in the carriage Cadence and Cynthia were sitting in.We had a full carriage for pretty much the whole trip.At one point a man got on who was a professor at Georgetown from Turkey who was on sabbatical.He is a History Professor and staying in Venice during his sabbatical.We talked to him most of the time he was sitting with us and then we all got off at Milan.We had 20 mins to kill so we looked for a bathroom but had to pay so Cynthia said no and then we went into the Bar but they didn't want any of the food so we got stuff from the vending machine and then got on the train.We walked the whole train didn't find anything, and then walked almost all the way back before finding seats.The finally ride was fairly boring.Cynthia slept and was leaning over on me.Cadence slept and then just stared around.I played games on my phone.The professor told us what stop to get off at.From the station we went across the street to the Best Western to ask for directions to our hotel.They told us to get a taxi.So we walked to the other side of the station, into sketchville and then after walking about 1/2 a mile we turned around and went all the way back and got a cab on the other side of the train station.The cab cost us 30 euros so Cadence paid and then we paid her back.There were 3 boys checking in when we walked up, so that was cool.
So we get to our hotel we have to walk all the way around this huge compound to find our room all the way in the back.Then as soon as we walk in Cynthia goes "I call the big bed!" so Cadence and I have the bunk bed.How the hell does that make sense?That the tallest person has to sleep in the smallest bed??She has been driving me crazy all day, I just need some space from her right now and I can't get it since we are together all weekend and we are roommates back in Rome.All day on the train she kept saying "what'd you say?" and I hadn't said anything.Then in the room she said something obnoxious and no one responded and she was like "don't whatever me Bridget!" when I didn't say anything and Cadence didn't say anything either so that kinda annoyed me.Then she was talking about how black my heels were and how gross they were, what does she expect after being in the rain in my shoes and walking around all day.
We slept in today until about 10.Then we got dressed and walked to the bus stop, we started out walking the wrong way and then the lady working the morning shift ran out after us telling us to go the other way.We had to catch the 25 bus, go a few stops, and then get off and wait for the 53 to take us into town.We were the only 3 on the 25 bus and the bus driver decided to take a 10 min break so we just sat there for awhile.He told us where to get off for the 53 bus and we waited for about a half hour.Then we took the 53 straight into town.We wandered around the and found lunch in a little restaurant where I had an amazing panini of salami and grilled veggies.Then we wandered around Venice and went into a mask shop.I bought 2 Venetian maskes, one was red with a tall red feather and then one that was blue and I had her put a stick on that one instead of the ribbon ties.Then we just wandered around the city, we bought a map and found our way to Piazza San Marco which I was really excited about because that's where The Italian Job starts!!!! :)Then we decided to go to Piazza San Polo and there was a band starting to play.We decided to have dinner at the little restaurant in the square.It was such a nice area and the food was really good.I had tortolinis with creamy sauce and ham.Then we started to walk back to the bus station and of course got lost on the way.Venice was so pretty though with all of it's little streets, bridges, and waterways.We thought about taking a gondola ride but it became 100 euros after 7 pm so we just walked.When we got to the bus stop I didn't have a ticket so I had to buy one from the ticket station.While waiting for a bus we sat on a wall and ended up talking to a local who didn't have anything to do so he was just sitting at the bus station waiting for the last bus before going home....sounds SUPER boring.We got off the 53 and had to walk all the way back to the hotel.It was a little sketch walking back in the middle of the night with not a lot of street lights.When we finally got back we discovered we didn't have any internet in our room so we couldn't do that so we just laid in bed and talked for awhile.Cadence swaddled with Cynthia which was pretty funny and then she went back to her bed and we all went to sleep.
This morning we all woke up around 7 because some asian family was yelling and then again around 9 because another group was being loud.So we left the hotel by about 10:00 and walked back to the 53 bus stop and waited for 45 mins for the bus to come.Once in downtown Venice we walked to the train station, bought breakfast/lunch, bought snacks for the 7 hour train ride and just sat around until 12:40.Then we found our train and sat down in a random place.Turns out Cadence and Cynthia both bought their tickets for the wrong day, their tickets are for tomorrow not today.We sat down in some random seats and then decided to find my actual seat so we didn't have people telling us to move.We are back in a Harry Potter type carriage which I like.They are just going to have to pay the fine when the ticket man comes but whatever we shall see what happens.I don't feel that bad though since I already had to pay a fine for when werode the train for free in Cinque Terre.We closed the door and the curtains and then two ladies opened them because their seats were in our carriage.One only speaks Italian and the other speaks a little English so her and Cynthia are having a Italian-English conversation, pretty funny.Nothing too exciting happened during our train ride.This one girl came into our cabin and she had short hair on the left side and the hair on top and to the right were wavy and a little longer.I actually really liked the effect and she had kind of a Hermione look to her which was pretty cool.When we got home Cadence made pasta and red sauce with basil which was perfect and simple after the long journey."
So that was the weekend! Quite an adventure, and, although there were ups and downs, I really loved the exploration, exilleration, craziness, and life-long memories with such good friends! Every where we went was simply breath taking, just beautiful. Italy is an insane and beautiful country. I would go back to Venice in a heart beat, it was more fantastic than I could have imagined. Now it is time to prepare for this coming school week (3 uizzes and two midterms), and a trip to the Vatican!