Arrivederci, Roma! (Summer Sailing 2018)

And before we knew it, it was our last day in Rome. And our last day of this adventure abroad. For us, the ending of a trip abroad has always been bittersweet; we look forward to being back home and falling back into our old routine, but we’re always sad to leave behind whichever beautiful place we are in. We have photos and memories to last a lifetime, but we only wish we could stay longer to make more. Bittersweet.             We wanted to spend our last morning in Rome taking a nice walk in the Villa Borghese, which is Rome’s 3rd largest park. I read on a blog somewhere before leaving that they recommend doing a nice picnic in the park. There’s plenty of places to sit, and plenty to watch while you’re eating. It’s such a great way to spend a nice quiet morning.             At one of…

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Roman Holiday Day 3 (Summer Sailing 2018)

We woke up to a bright blue sky outside our window, and this was enough to get us out of bed and back onto the streets of Rome for another busy day of wandering, eating, photo taking, and sight-seeing.             From our hotel, we wandered down the Via Merulana to find ourselves standing in front of the Colosseum. Since we had already done a tour of the inside the last time we were in Rome, we chose to just take some photos outside to save time. There were an insane amount of people outside, waiting to go in or just lounging around, and it was all a bit overwhelming. But, that’s Rome I guess right?             What we did want to visit was the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill, which was in the same vicinity as the Colosseum. There are always tons of workers selling tickets wandering around outside the…

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The Eternal City Day 1 (Summer Sailing 2018)

Although we were upset about the adventure on the Oosterdam coming to an end, our 4-day adventure in Rome was just getting started, and this was one that I’ve been looking forward to all voyage. Last time we had come to Rome, it was 2014, and it was one of the ports of call on another Princess Cruises Mediterranean line we did. Since it wasn’t the beginning or ending port, we only had a day’s time in the city, which is not nearly enough to explore the entirety of the open-air museum that is Rome. On our last visit, we had only visited the Colosseum and took a trip to the Vatican – we had skipped everything in between. That is the very reason we had left Rome thinking that it was overrated; we hadn’t actually seen the gems of Rome in the first place.             We arrived in port…

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An Unexpected Visit to Messina (Summer Sailing 2018)

So this post is starting off with a twist, as promised. While we were still docked at Souda, the captain came on the loudspeaker and announced that because of high winds and strong waves, the Oosterdam was not going to be arriving in Mykonos. Safety is always the priority, and he did not want to play games with Mother Nature. So instead, he managed to secure us a berth at Messina in Sicily. In the original itinerary, we were scheduled to visit Palermo, so this would mean we’d be exploring Sicily twice. To be honest, I was a little disappointed when I first heard the news. Even though we’d already been to Mykonos before, I was excited to go again and explore the fun aspects of Greece, instead of sightseeing. We had purchased a transfer to go to Elia Beach, which was one of Mykonos’s nicest beaches. I was already…

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In the City of Love (Summer Sailing 2018)

And we found ourselves back in the city with waterways instead of roads and gondolas instead of cars.  We were back in the company of gelato, masquerade masks, and hidden alleys built on water. We were in Venice, and it was so good to be back for the second time. I finished the book, Sapiens, just a couple months ago and the author writes about this whole idea of romanticism that has really exploded, especially in the 21st century. It involves buying experiences over material goods. As human beings, we long to see the world, we invest in trips abroad, we go to movies, or we throw money at cool restaurants that let you eat blindfolded. Because it’s all about the experience and over time, it is this collection of these experiences that make up a life. Our life. We were complete romantics in Venice. For us, the one day…

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