Countryside Italy

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!

Vatican City

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).

All the roads lead to Rome

I wouldn’t say that I am out of shape, but I am definitely out of shape when it comes to walking and standing up. It is out of season for Liseberg, so I am not used to this much walking. Today we reached 20,600 steps, crazy amount of steps!

So it wasn’t a bump free ride to go to Rome. Six hours before our flight took off last night, Jesper realized that his passport had expired a month earlier. He paid a huge amount of money to get a provisional passport (it is extremely pink!). The flight was more than half empty, I don’t think I have ever flown with that few people on board. It only took 2.5 hours, I finished Harry Potter and the Deahtly Hallows (amazing ending to the story, the review was not that well-written, I apolgize, I might change it someday when I am not as tired as I am now), slept a little bit and watched a thunderstorm over the Alps somewhere, really cool to see lightning from above the clouds.

Our second bump arose at the airport in Rome at 11pm when our pre-booked taxi driver didn’t show up. There was a miscommunication we learned this morning, they needed a reconfirmation from us that the price would change since our apartment was outside the city limits, but at the end of our confirmation email it also said that they were happy to have confirmed this with us. So we got to the apartment a little bit later than we planned, but it worked out very well anyway. There was a shuttle service at the airport with fixed prices 20 euro per person. Very friendly and helpful people.

The apartment is a little bit outside the city limits and very nice. There are two big balconies. One much bigger than the other one and the “small” one is bigger than most standard balconies in Sweden. Pretty great. Unfortunately, there are only singles bed, and I was afraid of falling down between them during the night.

Today we slept until 10am, went out to the grocery store (crazy store where the aisles wouldn’t fit more than one person, and there were also a ton of easter eggs, we couldn’t resist and bought one, it was basically just a big Kinder Egg, delicious and with a super big Star Wars toy inside) to buy breakfast, then had breakfast in the sun on the balcony. The whole day has been around 20C and a little bit cloudy. Perfect for walking around a big city. We left the apartment at 1pm approx, bought a week pass for the metro and buses and went to the city where our promenade started. We didn’t have any plans for today, just walk around, look at things, and plan for tomorrow, tonight instead. So we walked, and walked, and walked, and took lots of pictures. I actually only took 65. Jesper borrowed his dad’s professional camera and has taken most of the pictures.

I am honestly not sure what we photographed today, there are so many old and special buildings. I might write descriptions other days.

So here comes a bunch of pictures from today.

Ramses crawled inside one of our bags before leaving yesterday.

First day in Dubai

This post used to contain pictures, but due to new storage limitations from WordPress, I had to fix the problem and decided to create a new blog that works as an archive for all the posts from my travels. This full post can be found here.

Being away from cold, work and stress in school is great. Today was supposed to be the coldest day this week with about 22 C. It will be a great week!

Yesterday we left Gothenburg at 7 am, spent 7 hours at the airport in Stockholm and then another (almost) seven hours on a pretty uncomfortable plane. I think the length of this flight is too short to require comfortableness. It was not very nice. But we had three seats all to ourselves so we could kinda lie down. We landed at 1 am local time, our taxi took us to the wrong Holiday Inn Express so we didn’t go to bed until 3am. Up again at 9 so we wouldn’t miss breakfast and then we got fooled by the hotel that gave us a taxi which took the long way to the beach so we had to pay about twice as much as it would have costed. Whatever!

We spent a few hours at the JBR beach, we both got burned. It was a nice beach, the water was warm, probably 23 C or something. But it was a bit windy so we only got in the water once and left around 4pm to have early dinner at Panda Express. I have to say, that Dubai is very international, all the fast food chains from California is here, and it doesn’t feel at all like an Arabic country (except for the Arabic letters everywhere). It feels like my second home, I like it. After dinner we walked around on JBR at the Walk which is a strip right next to the beach where tons of stores and restaurants. This place was pretty far away from where we live, definitely the touristy place of Dubai. We walked around a lot, bought some food to snack on tonight and then  we found a nice taxi who took us to the hotel up north, kinda close to Burj Khalifa.

We are so tired, long day of traveling yesterday, and a lot of walking today, so now we will chill with a movie, fall asleep and prepare for a day at Dubai Mall tomorrow with Burj Khalifa afterwards.

20160116_023323 PANO_20160116_181911 20160116_121542 20160116_133843 20160116_133848 20160116_135712 You know you are in an Arabic country when camels are walking on the beach.20160116_154215 JBR The Walk.20160116_163602 Jumeirah.20160116_175101 JBR The Beach.IMG_20160116_164857 IMG_20160116_172308 IMG_20160116_172314 IMG_20160116_173012 IMG_20160116_174247 It’s too bad they are building so much out in the water, it ruins the sunset…IMG_20160116_174636 IMG_20160116_180223 A chrome Lamborghini. All the cars here are extremely fancy pancy, but this one was a little bit better.IMG_20160116_180641IMG_20160116_181907 IMG_20160116_183708 IMG_20160116_183758 PANO_20160116_163328 PANO_20160116_164340 PANO_20160116_172655 PANO_20160116_172741 PANO_20160116_174657 PANO_20160116_175014 PANO_20160116_175513 12583606_1059748967380445_1723920627_n IMG_20160116_204548This is a very international city, so why not try stuff from other countries? This basil seed drink is from Thailand.

Catacombs, Lafayette, Louvre

This post used to contain pictures, but due to new storage limitations from WordPress, I had to fix the problem and decided to create a new blog that works as an archive for all the posts from my travels. This full post can be found here.

Our last day in Paris was rainy. It started with more than an hour in line to go down in the catacobs under the city. It was cool and a little bit scary. At first it was just tunnels, but then the skeletons came. 6 million skeletons lined the walls. It was ridiculously many skulls. And one looked like a real head, that was scary!

IMG_20150916_141159 IMG_20150916_134442 IMG_20150916_135103He was looking for secret passageways, found none (luckily I would say). received_1003141196374556 IMG_20150916_135553 IMG_20150916_140033 IMG_20150916_140204 IMG_20150916_140359 received_1003141219707887 IMG_20150916_140824 IMG_20150916_140954 IMG_20150916_141114 IMG_20150916_143233 received_1003141183041224 IMG_20150916_141622 IMG_20150916_141846 IMG_20150916_142044 received_1003141206374555 IMG_20150916_142103 IMG_20150916_142502 IMG_20150916_142757 received_1003141193041223

We then had lunch and met up with Helena at the fancy pancy shopping mall Lafayette. It was a very cool shopping mall, but only brands and ridiculousy expensive and not even nice clothes. Tiffany’s had a counter there and a diamond ring for 174,000 euros. Craaazy! We didn’t stay there too long and then walked to Musée de Louvre. There were no people in line at all. So nice! So we just went straight in, Jesper and I didn’t pay since we are European citizens and under 25 (kinda close for me though, *gulp*). Mom and Helena walked very slowly through it all so we separated directly. That museum is huge, probably bigger than the British Museum. We gave most of our attention to the famous things, like Mona Lisa, Nike of Samothrace, Psyche Revived by Cupid’s Kiss, Venus de Milo, Rebellious Slave and probably other stuff we didn’t know were famous. We walked around a lot and saw everything except the one part of France’s history, we learned afterward that that was one of the best part about the museum. Eh, well well.

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At the end of the visit we sat down among statues and were dead. Four long days of walking and the huge museum to end the trip killed our backs and legs. My lower back and calves were hurting so bad. My feet were saved by my awesome new shoes.

IMG_20150916_174639#tourists IMG_20150916_175644 received_1003141179707891 received_1003141216374554Nailed it. IMG_20150916_182550 IMG_20150916_180840Nike of Samothrace. IMG_20150916_180933 IMG_20150916_181742Emeralds!! IMG_20150916_183106Big (and apparently famous) painting. “Consecration of the emperor Napoleon I and coronation of the empress Josephine in the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris on December 2nd 1804”

IMG_20150916_185154 IMG_20150916_193326 IMG_20150916_185254We learned that before the palace of Louvre there was a fort there, and in the basement was the foundation to it. Pretty cool. And Jesper walked into the picture as always ❤ IMG_20150916_190124Venus de Milo. IMG_20150916_190528 IMG_20150916_191210 IMG_20150916_191433But first, let me take a selfie. IMG_20150916_191545Rebellious Slave by Michelangelo. IMG_20150916_191818Psyche Revived by Cupid’s Kiss. IMG_20150916_192037Exercising with a phone on his arm? IMG_20150916_193053 IMG_20150916_195131 IMG_20150916_195321 IMG_20150916_200343

On Thursday morning we left the apartment and headed for the airport where I read more than 100 pages in Shift. That book was amazing, I finished it shortly after and am now reading Dust, the third and last in the triology.

received_1003141223041220I took this picture with Jesper’s phone on the way to Paris. The sunrise over Gothenburg!

I have been super busy with school and stuff that’s why this post is a week late. And I probably won’t update now for a while again since my computer is broken and at the repair shopa and will most likely take two weeks to fix. I have Jesper’s tiny thing to work with until then. Probably good so I won’t spend time playing games when I should be focusing on school.

Three days ago I went to an apartment viewing out in Kvillebäcken and the day after, on Tuesday they called me and said we got it. So on December 1st Jesper and I will get a firsthand contract to a newly built apartment in Kvillebäcken, one bedroom apartment, 54 square meters. From October 1st and until then we will live in my old student apartment. Even if it is a nice apartment it will be nice to have an apartment that is ours, not mine.

Tour Eiffel, Arc de Triomphe, Sacre-Coeur, Pigalle

This post used to contain pictures, but due to new storage limitations from WordPress, I had to fix the problem and decided to create a new blog that works as an archive for all the posts from my travels. This full post can be found here.

Today was all about being a tourist, again. Our day started with the Eiffel Tower where we went all the way to the top. I have to say though that the second floor or even the first was the worst. At the top it was so high up that all perspectives were lost and it just looked unreal. The view was amazing and it wasn’t too windy, but it was cold and it took a long while before we regained the warmth in our fingers. On our way down we decided to walk from the second floor. It actually only took 3 minutes between each floor and we stopped at the first to walk on the glass floor. That was scary AF. Time for lunch after that and then we walked to the Arc de Triomphe. That roundabout was the sickest I’ve ever seen. No lines and seven cars wide. Crazy.

Our next stop for the day was the big La Basilique du Sacré Coeur de Montmartre. It was a cool church and on our way up there a bunch of guys trying to sell us crap grabbed us and got angry with us. Stupid and scary people!

We bought a ticket so we could go up to the dome and get a fantastic view. It was 300 steps up a staircase though and that was not easy. We then bought some macaroons and sat down at a café. Their Nutella crepes were not very good unfortunately. The last thing we did was to walk around in Pillage, the street where Moulin Rouge is and all the sex shops and strip clubs. Interesting area.

I forgot to write something that happened last night at Hard Rock Café. When I was buying my 16th glass the lady behind me asked me if I was from the US because it sounded like it. That made me ridiculously happy, haha! She thought that I was from USA!

Sorry for the short post today, but there are lots of pictures instead :).

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IMG_20150915_130421Etage 2

IMG_20150915_141806IMG_20150915_141816IMG_20150915_144624IMG_20150915_160210IMG_20150915_161756Arc de TriompheIMG_20150915_163123Avenue des Champs-ÉlyséesIMG_20150915_170338Sacre CoeurIMG_20150915_172441PANO_20150915_172758IMG_20150915_17283212016561_1000920863263256_22732239_nPANO_20150915_172735IMG_20150915_174712Sacre CoeurIMG_20150915_175339IMG_20150915_180207IMG_20150915_185739IMG_20150915_190452IMG_20150915_191949IMG_20150915_193453IMG_20150915_193752IMG_20150915_194106IMG_20150915_19411512026477_1000920896596586_536543612_n

A week full of stuff

Whoa, last time I updated was a week ago. Embarrassing! Sweden is definitely keeping me busy. I have been working like crazy the past 6 days, and when I haven’t been working I have spent time with Jesper. Lots have happened, for example I have been at Balderado two days last week and actually enjoyed it and realized that it isn’t too bad that every now and then. On Thursday I was there and finally got Balder! The week before they called me and asked if I wanted to work 1.5h earlier on Thursday so I could get an intro there. I had the intro in the morning before the park opened and climbed up to the top of it. The view was amazing, but it was high up and I was a bit scared. But I survived and got a cool selfie up there. The rest of that 9.5h day I had Balder for most of it. Only 30 minutes were spent at another attraction. But during that long day I got the intro, the check-up and the test. So now I have 9 attractions that I can work at. Cool! Most people only have 5.

Liseberg from Balder Balder is the big wooden rollercoaster.Selfie on top of BalderThe traditional selfie from the top of Balder.

The day after I was at Balderado again with the most chill day ever! But during that day, my boss called me while I was working and asked me if I wanted to work over time the day after, Saturday. So instead of working 11am-8pm, I would work 11am-11pm. I felt like I needed the extra money so I said yes. 12 hours was tough. I was up on Berget and it was an okay day. Very long, I was there from the opening of the park until closing. Crazy! But I survived. Those 3 extra hours gave me 100% OB (Uncomfortable Hours), so instead of 107 kr/h, I got 214.That’s more than 600kr for those 3 hours. Totally worth it!

Both my Sunday and Monday were both only 7-hour days, but I was so tired after 6 days and a week of 43 hours. I am still tired. But today has been busy with laundry and gift shopping for my second cousin’s babyshower on Saturday. The things I bought were so ridiculously cute that I honestly considered buying them for my future kids, haha! I also visited Jesper at work while he was on a break. We had ice cream together down in the harbor in the kinda nice weather.

Right, my Saturday was a very crazy day at work. The first crazy thing that happened was that one of the trains on Helix collided with a bird. The girl in the front seat was very upset when she came back to the station after the ride. There was a big splatter mark right next to her face and half the train had bird gore on it. We had to rinse the train off and it was super gross. I hope the bird died right away. It feel down  from the train, so no bird on the train.

The second thing was during my very last hour of the day when I was once again working at Helix (we move around and change attraction once every 30 or 60 minutes). This is actually very scary but from what I have heard, the boy is stable, even if he was seriously injured. So what happens is that I was working like normal and then I hear the operator say that we have to stop the attraction because someone is on the attraction area which is an extremely dangerous place to be. At first we thought it was a kid who jumped in there to pick something up that he dropped, but it turned out that he fell from a fence and fell 7-8m (23-26 feet) and landed in the area. So it was not an attraction-related injury. Very scary incident, and so real when I was there when it happened. I hope the 15-year old boy recovers soon and that other people will learn from this, do not climb on the fences around the attractions! This accident brought forth some evacuation practice for me though which was actually a good thing. I have never been part of an evacuation at Helix, so I am glad that I have experienced it and will now be more comfortable and confident next time it happens.

I have big plans for tomorrow as well. First I will sleep until I wake up, then I will do chill stuff for a while until I’m going to mom’s work to meet her there so we can go and buy a new phone for me. I love this one and don’t really want to buy another one, but the last week it has been a disaster. It discharges three times a day, and I haven’t been able to connect it to my computer. It is getting old so I guess it is time to say goodbye to the best phone I ever had, my Google Nexus 5. I hope HTC One M9 will be as good! I guess I could just pay 600kr and change the battery, but I would still buy a new phone within 6 months because it is getting closer to its 2-year birthday, and everyone knows phones don’t last much longer than that. I will sleep on it. It is a lot of money for an already old phone. But on the other hand, it is my beloved Nexus 5. But I love new phones… Aargh, dilemmas!

Chip and Stuff My fluffy cats! ❤Rainy at Liseberg This is how fun it is to work at Uppswinget when it is raining a lot!Änggårdsbergen Today I went for a walk with Axel up in Änggårdsbergen. It was beautiful!Änggårdsbergen ÄnggårdsbergenThis was such a beautiful scenery, but I got wrong focus. It was almost 9pm, the sun on its way down and it was so green beneath it. Sweden is very beautiful!