Adventure Time

05.22.2013 | International

It’s weird how time works but today I left the United States and arrived in Florence, Italy.  My flight wasn’t scheduled until 1pm so my parents and I were able to drive to Dayton this morning.  I had decided to fly out of Dayton because I did not want to fly by myself.  I have only flown twice in my life, both times to Florida which is only about a two hour flight.  Plus, I was little so I don’t really remember the whole flying experience.

The drive down was not very easy...we hit major traffic a little over halfway there.  Turns out there were some electrical wires down.  Luckily we have four wheel drive so we drove through the grass and onto a separate road so that we could make it to the airport without being stressed.  Then, I found out that my flight was delayed about an hour. This way we had time to grab lunch somewhere and then it was time to check my bags, go through security, and hop on a plane.

I met up with the rest of the girls at the airport and this is when my nerves started to really kick in.  These nerves were mostly about flying more than anything.  The time passed pretty quickly and before I knew it, I was looking for my seat on the plane.  We lucked out and everyone was sitting pretty close to one another; one girl was actually right across from me which was nice.

The first leg of our flight was from Dayton to Philly which is a short flight and I had a really talkative guy next to me which helped to put my nerves at ease (at least a little).  He was going to be doing a pilgrimage in Spain and had some really interesting stories about traveling and living abroad.

The second leg of my flight was not that easy.  We had a layover in Philly and then would be flying to Brussels, Belgium—about an eight hour flight. On this flight hardly anyone was sitting near each other and most of the passengers on the plane did not speak English. I had the window seat which I thought would be good for sleeping, but I also had a crying baby the aisle across from me—not so good for sleeping.  Needless to say, I stayed awake and watched movies the majority of the flight-thank goodness for those little TVs. 

Finally, the last leg of the flight: Brussels to Florence.  Our flight came in a little late to Brussels airport so we had to rush a little bit.  It was so different being in an airport in another country.  It was difficult to figure out where we were supposed to go and the security was completely different-as we were standing there shoeless, we realized that apparently everyone keeps their shoes on abroad, even for security.

As if being rushed wasn’t stressful enough, a few of us had forgotten to empty our water bottles, so we had to sprint to the bathroom, empty them, and then run back to the line for checking in.  But, we all made it onto the plane in time.  And, some of our friends that were traveling from Chicago joined us, so it was a fun flight.

It was really cool flying in the daylight over different countries and we could see the Mediterranean as well as mountain ranges which were beautiful! Before we knew it we were arriving in Florence, getting our bags (only one person’s luggage got lost) and hailing a cab over to our hotel.

When we arrived at our hotel, we were thankful to be on ground again—Italian cab drivers are insane! But, we had to laugh at the view.  Our hotel was surrounded by scaffolding as roof repairs were in the process of being completed.  We were surprised upon entering, that there was only one teeny elevator that only holds two people.  We decided to send one person up with all of the luggage and meet them at the top.  In Italy, hotels are not the same at all and ours was just the third floor of one of the buildings.  

We checked in, received our one room key and found our rooms.  Little did I know that my room was up a spiral staircase, so I had to lug my huge suitcase up more steps as no elevator reached our floor.  It took us a while to find our room, but we finally found the penciled in room number on our door.

Three tiny beds, one dresser, and one armoire were piled into our room.  The bathroom included a bidet spout, toilet, sink, and shower head.  I say shower head, because there are no doors on our shower, just a small drain on the floor.  This will be my home for the next month and it will be the start of a very interesting journey.

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