Journal #4 Anh-Dao Tran

Good Morning Italy! What a beautiful day. Today I woke up and had breakfast with everyone at 9:30 a.m. Second day trying to get use to the breakfast selection here at the hotel. After breakfast, we left to tour the Vatican city. I am personally excited to tour the Vatican City. Did you know that the Vatican city is separate from Italy? I didn’t until our tour guide told us. It has closed walls that completely separates the two. We arrived at the Vatican proceeding inside having to go through security. The tour went to the top and we began outside. Our first view was the dome. We took a team picture and began to learn about the dome and Vatican. We proceeded through and learned all about the paintings of the Sistine chapel prior to going to going into the chapel. The paintings and sculptures heading in to the chapel were amazing. They also had these blankets which were woven in Europe and sent back to Rome. They were amazing and still in great condition. Finally we made it into the Sistine chapel. The paintings throughout were breathe taking. I cant believe Michaelangelo painted this all by hand. That is simply amazing, and you will be able to see pictures on the video journal. We all had to be quiet, dress according to regulation, and not take pictures because it is a Chapel and it is respectful to abide by those rules. We finally left after 20 minutes of roaming our eyes on every detail of the paintings that our eyes could possible handle and walked towards St. Peters basilica. Walking in there, I was in awe. This basilica is so big! The altars,  paintings, sculptures, lighting,  and marble floors was like unlike anything I have ever seen. Im so glad I had the opportunity to experience this. Descriptions could never be put into words, but just a must go see! It is an absolutely beautiful place of worship. After observing and taking lots of pictures,  we went outside and where the Pope lives and the tour guide informed us that on Sunday afternoons at 12 noon he comes to the window and waves to the people! Too bad it wasn’t sunday. I wish he could have been out there today,  that would have been so great! We took so many pictures outside. Isabella,  our tour guide,  then took us to a store right outside the Vatican where the group of us all bought souvenirs. After a long morning of walking and absorbing a whole lot of information, we finally went to lunch!! Everybody seems to have a second energy whenever food is involved. We were all so hungry. We ended up going to a family owned restaurant where they served delicious pasta made fresh once ordered. We all, for the most part, ordered different pastas. We were nice enough to exchange pieces of pasta for our own with each other which was nice because we had the opportunity to try different pastas.
Lunch passed and next thing you know we are back at the hotel and getting ready for our first game! Walking into the locker room at the gym where we were going to play, I was very nervous for some reason. I’m sure we all were. We put on our jerseys, laced up our sneakers and headed into the gym. The team, College Italia, was sitting closest to the entrance, in the color red. Walking by them, we didn’t know what to really expect. They all waved while we walked by, that was a nice feeling. We started the game off with exchanging gifts. We gave them T-shirts, and they gave us italian key chains. They seemed nice and very tall. The game started shortly after the exchanging of gifts. We win the jump ball and begin to play ball, our first game in Italy. What a wonderful opportunity and experience.
After the game, we had dinner with them! That was really fun, we seemed to get along just fine. It was pretty funny, they were trying to talk in English while we were trying to communicate with them in Italian. We sat all together and our teams sat intermixed with each other. It was so much fun sitting there and listening to my teammates communicate with the other team. We enjoyed a nice dinner together learning about each other and the differences in, for example, dancing in the US and Italy. That was pretty entertaining. It was a great time. Oh yeah! I forgot to mention, the italian team sang Adele – Someone Like You for us. Well, that was our last night in Rome and it was very well spent with the international team.
Anh-Dao Tran
#25

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