Two days in San Diego just flew past. I can’t describe the feeling when I drove on the I5 South toward San Diego and drove past all of the exits in Carlsbad and lower, remembering things from each of them. I still remember how to drive places and what things look like. Insane! But so much fun. The feeling of home has never been stronger.Miriam and her brother didn’t want to spend the full day today in San Diego, so they took the train up to Fullerton this morning. So we drove them to Oceanside and said goodbye and directly after found a breakfast place that was incredible: Petite Madeline. I ordered crepes with white chocolate mousse and strawberries and a french toast on the side. They gave me the wrong crepe (with whipped cream and raspberries) and shortly after came out with the right one. I’m not the one to pass down a crepe or let it go to waste, so I ate both. So delicious! So stuffed!After the intense 26k step day yesterday we just drove down to La Jolla Shores and stayed there for the day. Since I have gotten a pretty bad cold, surfing was out of the question. Everyhing but laying on the beach reading was out of the question. Muscle soreness in our butts from yesterday’s hike is revealing itself more and more for each hour. So all three of us just laid there. It was cloudy like no other days, but it was still warm. If it was sunny I think it would have been unbearable. We only stayed until 3pm and since those 4 hours flew past I guess that I must have fallen asleep pretty hard right there because I got burned. Pretty bad on my stomach. Even after putting on SPF 30 twice!We then drove to Fashion Valley, the prettiest shopping center I know of. I wasn’t planning on getting much, and the one thing I really wanted, they didn’t have. But I somehow managed to spend over $100. I wanted to get new panties from Victoria’s Secret, but they for once didn’t have any nice ones, so I skipped. I did however buy two new bras. I have many, but honestly I should throw many of them away since they don’t fit well anymore. These two though, oh my! They were perfect!I also got a pair of summery jeans from Forever 21 and SPF 50. Also som Dayquil. I hope this cold goes away. I don’t feel too well. I wonder if I can take this as a sick day instead of a vacation day. I I felt like this at home, I’m not sure that I would have gotten into work honestly. I’ll have to check when I get back home.Last night when I was talking to my hostparents, they told me the sad news of Famous Dave’s in Vista (San Diego). The restaurant had permanently closed. Fortunately for me, it is a chain and is open in Irvine, so we drove there, it was on the way back home to La Habra, and had a really late dinner. It was as delicious as I remember. Oh my goodness!It was great being back in San Diego. I already miss it, but I am also very excited to go up to SLO this Sunday.
Rain, rain, rain and even more rain. Proably not as much as it can get during monsoon season in July and August, but it was constant throughout the day and got way worse by the time we were on our way back to the hotel.
So we planned today’s activities accordingly and ended up doing some shopping.
First we went to Yongsan electronics market. Along the whole street was small shops and at the end was a mall, ET Land, where they had most things to do with electronics. We didn’t buy anything, didn’t really have any plans for it anyway, but when we saw the prices, we definitely didn’t want to buy anything. 956 000 for a Samsung Galaxy S9! Haha, the prices here are ridiculous. It equals around 7 700 SEK, and if you buy it in Sweden right now, it is 7 000. Not worth buying electronics in South Korea.
We then ventured outside of the Metro comfort bubble and took a bus. Sure, to a Metro station, but still. We went down to Gangnam and Starfield Coex mall. Indoor and with plenty of stores. Not too many familiar but I still managed to walk out of there with goods worth of 190 000. I’ve been looking at a Patagonia down jacket, but it is 2 900 SEK. Probably worth it, but still a lot of money. I found a very nice down jacket at Uniqlo for around 1 400. Half the price and I got to try it on in a store before buying it. This is it. I also got a pair of really warm gloves with touch, perfect for the upcoming winter back home. In the shopping mall was also the most incredible library! Unfortunately, all the books were in Korean. For some reason, I can’t upload my 360 picture of it on Google Maps, so here is a link to Facebook for now.
For lunch we went to the food court and I had bulgogi bibimbap. Never tried before, but so good! We had a break later in the day at Starbucks and moved around activities for the last days here in South Korea and then went to the Aquarium. Kinda childish, and very expensive, but I love sealife so it was worth it.
Today was all about quality time with mom. Her work arranged a trip to Kosta. We left early this morning and got back very late. Included was a Christmas buffet and it was really good. Kinda felt early, but it is almost at the end of November. But Thanksgiving hasn’t even been yet.
It was not a big market and compared to Liseberg it was a disappointment. But as soon as the sun went down and the lights were visible, it was very pretty.
The brand Kosta Boda comes from here, so I was prepared to shop glass. But there was a big fashion outlet as well. I found pretty shoes but decided against it. Another day. But I did buy two shirts. Then I also bought a cute flower tea infuser, a vase from Orrefors and a drop-shaped bowl, also from Orrefors. I’ve been meaning to get a vase for so long, it is not pretty to have flowers in the decanter, so now we have one, and a pretty fancy one.
It was a nice day 🙂
The first thing I was greeted by when walking through the door at home, was Ramses of course. He always comes running to say hello when the door is opened. The second thing I was greeted by was Cleo sticking his head out the bedroom door hissing at me. I think I might have been gone for too long for Cleo’s liking. Then he got almost aggressive when he smelled me. Weird cat.
It has been another long day. All flight trips with a layover takes so much longer and is so exhausting. On the first flight from Budapest to Munich, I slept all the way through, even through the big turbulens that apparently happened. On the second though, I had a hard time falling asleep, even if I listened to my classical piano music list. Perhaps it was because all the rows in the back were occupied by WSP. I used the last 30 minutes to a little bit of writing. Why didn’t I think of that earlier?
In the morning today we had free time. It was spent shopping. I bought a very nice notebook at a Christmas fair, a refrigerator magnet and a pair of shoes. That was not the plan, but they kind of matched my scarf and I felt like I needed another pair of better quality shoes.
My calves are rock hard and hurt a lot! So many steps, only walking for three days. It will be great with four days of sitting in front of a computer working again, resting my legs a bit. My feet don’t hurt, but my calves.
It has been a great conference and many interesting discussions in the morning at the hotel. Many interesting things to see in Budapest, many fun things happened. But it has been tough. I really need my sleep and when I don’t get it, I quiet. I hope I haven’t seemed too boring because of it. Because I have had a great time and it was fun to get to know my coworkers outside of work.
Pictures are coming, not tonight, but my goal is to get them uploaded tomorrow afternoon/evening. Ägg-i-skägg-i-rää and goodnight!
I have some very great news that I want to share with you, my very few readers.
I have had a very bad luck with job applications since I graduated in June. I am not going to go into details about it, it is kind of a long story. I am glad to announce that my bad luck streak has ended, and I finally got a job! I sent in my application on a Friday two weeks ago. On the next Monday they called me and wanted to see me the next Tuesday (five days ago). The interview went well and they told me they would call me again on Wednesday. But in the afternoon, that same day, they called me and told me: why would they wait a full day when they had already made up their minds?! Two days ago, Friday, I was back at the office, signed the contract, ordered a phone, took a picture for my keycard and I said hello to my new coworkers.
So everyone, on September 15th, I will start my first real job as an Assisting Project Manager at the management department at WSP. I have honestly been jumping around the apartment the past five days, almost not believing it to be true, but the signed contract on my desk tells me otherwise. I couldn’t be more thrilled for this opportunity. But I am of course also very nervous. But I think something would be wrong with me if I weren’t :).
Here‘s a link to a funny video my mom sent me the other day. Today I was at stage 2. I need an upgrade of my wardrobe and spent almost 4000 sek today on new clothes! I haven’t bought clothes in probably two years, and it is definitely needed, so it is okay! I am going to need more shopping soon though…
The day after I got this very happy piece of news, Jesper and I got an almost equally happy phone call, telling us that we could choose from two brand (so new that we couldn’t even see them because they are not done yet) new apartments in Mölndal’s city center. Mölndal is the city closest to Gothenburg to the south, only about 20-25 minutes to downtown Gothenburg. Mölndal downtown is expanding like crazy and the location of this new apartment couldn’t be more central. Next year sometime, the new mall will be ready, a stone’s throw away from our building with a gym inside and an Ica Maxi (huge grocery store), and of course all the other normal stores Sweden has in its malls. The only downside is the public transit cost, it will be more since we are going over two zones whenever we go into downtown Gothenburg. But I heard that the taxes are lower there. Or maybe I will get a bicycle? My new office is only 17 minutes away with the tram. More time to read during the commutes, at least during winter.
The apartment is unfortunately only a one bedroom apartment (like we have now), but it is 11 sq. m bigger, has a much better layout AND BEST OF ALL: A rooftop balcony of 15.5 sq. m!!! It is also pretty awesome that it has a full-size freezer and fridge. But seriously! A rooftop balcony of that size with afternoon sun? And a walk-in closet? And a real kitchen? Much nicer neighborhood and we can reach 3 Pokéstops from our apartment! The bedroom is also much bigger than what we have now (8.2 sq. m). This will be awesome, I can’t wait to move on January 21st next year!
Everything is starting to fall into place, now I will just cross my fingers that Jesper will get his dream job soon! ❤
Today was such a beautiful and fun day! It didn’t feel like we did too much walking, but my phone tells me this was my best day yet, 22,800 (accumulating: 121,800 steps in 6 days). We had to leave the apartment at 9am but we couldn’t check in at the hotel until noon, so we took the car, drove south to a lake we had seen on Google Maps. That was a good choice. The lake was called Lago Albano and it looked like a volcano crater, which is also is, I just double checked. The city was the cutest ever! It was placed on the hillside with an amazing view over the lake. There was only 8,800 inhabitants. Super cute town. After we checked it out for a bit, we drove down in the crater to walk a bit on the beach. The beach was black, which made sense since it was a volcanic crater. Such a pretty place. Here is a link to a sphere photo which I uploaded to Google Maps.
We then just kept on driving and found ourselves in another small village called Rocca di Papa. It was also on a hillside but more spread out. We saw one old man walking on the tangled road beneath us (when we were standing on the highest point we could find for a great view) with 6 big bottles of water, waddling along to his house further down.
We then drove back to Rome and to our hotel for the night, Pulitzer Roma. It is not much on the outside, but it is cute on the inside, and they have a dog mascot, a black and white cocker spaniel. Adorable! The lady in charge (I think) is super nice. We had lunch at the hotel and then decided to go into Rome today instead of Ostia since we got a parking space right outside the hotel door! It literally couldn’t have been better. So tomorrow we are going to Ostia instead after checking out and then going straight to the airport from there since it is very close. In Rome we walked around a bit to see the big things one last time. We saw Colosseum twice, Pantheon, Fontana di Trevi, had dinner at Piazza del Popolo and I bought a new backpack, a wine red Herschel. Really cool one. An early birthday present to myself!
Last night we had a little bit of a freakout, we hadn’t booked any tours before coming here, so we looked into it last night. Our plan was to go to the Vatican today, Colosseum on Friday, and Pompeii on either Saturday or Sunday. We have one of those three things figured out. We booked a tour to both Vatican City and Colosseum, but today we found out the Colosseum tour was already full so we had to book it for another day. I think we knew that it would be full-booked, but we still didn’t book anything in advance. So I encourage you all planning to go to Rome, book everything in advance, at least Colosseum! We have rebooked the Colosseum tour for Saturday morning, I just hope that one is not full as well. Otherwise the only option I know of is early on Tuesday morning, on the day we are leaving. Let’s cross our fingers for Saturday!
Anyway, we booked through the official website of the Vatican Museums and picked a tour of the museums, the Sistine Chapel, and the St. Peter’s Basilica. It was interesting, the tour guide had been in the Vatican for 50 years or something, as a guard and something else. Pretty cool. He knew a lot. What was not so fun about it was that we were not alone. There were approximately 1,340,292 other people there. It was hard to see anything, you could hardly see the floor you were walking on! Too many people. I also wish we could have stayed a little bit longer in the Sistine Chapel to watch the paintings a little bit longer. So many details everywhere! St. Peter’s Basilica was really cool! Church architecture is, but I am kinda bummed that I don’t remember too much from the World Architecture class I took at Cal Poly 2.5 years ago. Probably a third of that course was about ancient Rome. I feel kinda lost here in general and don’t know much about the pretty old buildings I take lots of pictures on. And honestly, I am too tired to try and do any research on it now afterwards. It is still pretty, and as a fan of architecture, I really enjoy this city.
After the Vatican we were already tired (it was around 12:30pm). We found a cute restaurant called Polese and had pizza there. I had a proscuitto pizza and it was incredible! The crust was the thinnest I have ever seen!
We then walked along to Pantheon which was incredible. I remember the professor talking a lot about it and it felt really cool to be there and see it with my own eyes. But like I said before, I don’t really remember exactly what it was. I think something about it withstanding WWII, but still being damaged from it?
Our next stop was Fontana di Trevi. We found the people before the fountain. Crazy many people there! But the fountain was so pretty! If there weren’t that many people there, I would have loved to sit there with a gelato in the sun, just watching the water.
We walked 19,000 steps today (accumulating to 39,000 in two days) so we took many breaks, right after the fountain we sat down for a Swedish fika with ice cream, coffee, and something sweet.
The last thing we did for the day was trying to find the GAP store so I could buy a new pair of favorite jeans. I bought a pair of True Skinny jeans in San Francisco some years ago but they have been worn so much that I feel that it is time to get a new pair. 600 SEK for a pair of awesome jeans was so cheap! I also bought a pair of more fancy pants for 300 for future situations when my normal style of clothes does not fit the occasion. I wish we had GAP in Sweden.
Then we just walked around, found a square (Piazza del Popolo), saw a staircase up to a house where it looked like a great view (Piazza Napoleone I). We will go back there tomorrow when it is dark to get some real nice photographs. My soles didn’t hurt today, but my calves when we got back, and the top of my feet has been hurting since this afternoon. So much walking! We have decided to take it a bit slow tomorrow, sleep until 10am, plan our day with museums and such, Hard Rock Café in the evening and some photographing in the evening.
Here, enjoy a bunch of pictures from today (only mine, not Jesper’s, I might post some of them when we get back home).