Sunday, April 08, 2012

Bella Italia

Finally! Now that things have calmed down somewhat at work and home (and the four-day weekend certainly helped), I have a few minutes to post some pictures of my wonderful trip to Italy. Are you ready for photo overload?

Our trip took us through the airport in Frankfurt, where there are pretzel and sausage stands everywhere. No, I did not succumb to the temptation (but I should have taken a picture).

When we arrived in Rome, all tired and disheveled, it was early afternoon. In order to adapt to the time change, we resisted going to the hotel for a shower and a nap. Instead, we spent some time around the Piazza Navona and the Pantheon. I introduced the students to some of the best gelato they'll ever have at Blue Ice. We made a return visit a few days later.

Here is a view from inside the Pantheon.

The next day, we visited the Colisseum. Perfect spot for a group photo!

While we were waiting inside, we spotted this amorous couple. They were undeterred by the kids' hooting and picture-taking. That's Amore, indeed!

The inside of the Colisseum is so very cool. There is nothing like it!

We also had a tour through the Forum. This stuff never gets old for me (no pun intended...). I love the history and the stories.

In the afternoon, we had lunch at Gladiator School just outside of Rome.

Then the kids (and a couple of teachers) geared up for some training.

Followed by a fight to the death (well, not really).

We ladies were just interested in having our picture taken with the very charismatic Marco.

The next day took us to Assisi, which in my opinion has one of the best views of the countryside.

Dragons singing karaoke?

Then we went to Florence. This is one of my top 5 favourite cities in the world (yes, I have such a list).

There was some kind of "new year's" celebration going on.

And I found a pig. I'm always on the lookout for pigs (such as here).

Here I am with my amazing group on the Ponte Vecchio. We divided the students up among the chaperones for check-ins and passport control. This is why I can only count to seven in Italian...just kidding.

And the chaperones on the Ponte Vecchio.

I met a new friend, too. 

We attended a fresco workshop.

The kids loved it. Look how engrossed they are in their works of art.

Obviously, the adults enjoyed the activity too. I'm quite proud of my creation.

We went back to Florence the next day (we actually changed our itinerary a bit so we could have some free time there...I might have twisted a few arms to do that.)

Breakfast - cornetto e nutella!

Supper - pizza!

We did more than paint and eat in Florence. We shopped! I packed so inappropriately for this trip that I pretty much had to buy a new wardrobe while I was there. I know...poor me! The weather forecast called for clouds and rain and, indeed, up until a couple of days before we arrived, it was quite chilly there. Not so during our visit. Sunshine and temperatures in the 20s Celsius (high 60s to low 70s Fahrenheit). It was great, but it did necessitate a few short-sleeved tops, a couple of dresses and (ahem) three new pairs of shoes.

Okay, moving on...

We went back to Rome and visited the Vatican. I didn't take many pictures this time (probably because I have tons of Vatican pics from the last two trips), but I did capture this beauty:

And, of course, we took another group photo. I kind of got cut off here (on the far left) so you can't really see the new shirt I bought in Florence *wink wink*

Alright, that's enough for today. There are tons more but I'll save some for tomorrow. Thanks for making it this far.


Sara said...

Love the looked like you had a wonderful time...

Julie Fukuda said...

Your pictures bring back so many fond memories.(only I did it in '60 for a dollar-a-day). I loved seeing those wonderful places in reality that had up to then been pictures in text books and dates to remember.

Anonymous said...

How wonderful! Yrs ago I visited Germany and flew into Frankfurt. My very first impression was how lovely the roofs were as we descended for landing. Then I fell in love with the flower boxes, the lacy curtains everywhere, and loved Germany. Perhaps one day I'll get to have that experience in Italy! Thanks for sharing all the wonderful photos!

Barb said...

Thanks so much for sharing those pictures...looks like such a fun time...

PunkiePie (Jen) said...

can't wait to see and read more about your trip. any excuse to go shopping is good enough for me. :)

Thimbleanna said...

I LOVE seeing your pictures Rachel! Looks like such a wonderful trip. And the advantages to traveling with a group of kids -- the classroom experiences that you did together. I would love to do those things! If any of your other chaperones ever get tired.... ;-D

Sew Create It - Jane said...

Ah looks wonderful! I hope the trip was just what you needed and that you've come back refreshed :o)

Vesuviusmama said...

Threenpairs of shoes - I'm with you!

Kim said...

Love love love Italy!
Looks like a great trip...all the high points. Is Florence just fantastic or what?

Have a super time......looks like you sure are so far!