Lardieri Sisters Take on Europe

After a nice relaxing weekend in Naples and Pompeii we returned to Rome for the week until we jet setted off to our next location. As I’ve said before my sister’s fiancé, Matt, has never been to Europe so he wanted the full experience with tours and sightseeing and all. Their week was filled with every mornings, tour guides and a lot of walking. We met for lunches and dinners and, as I acted as translator during their time in Italy, enjoyed the local food and wine. While I have been here for over a month, I have yet to taste such good food as I did when they were here (Matt was very adamant about not eating at touristy places, but only authentic Italian restaurants).

Aside from gaining a food baby and losing most of my budgeted money for the next two weeks, we explored and wandered the streets of Rome, tasting Nutella crepes and discovering a fabulous gelato place in Trastevere. Tee and Matt also discovered-and ate at frequently, as in, multiple times a day- a traditional Italian deli where they tried to communicate with an elderly Italian man who did not speak any English. Eventually, they learned how to say the essentials- bread, meat and please.

Having them here, especially Tee, was a great pick-me-up. I’m not homesick at all and am enjoying every second here. However, in true Italian culture, my very large family is very close and I miss them all very much.

While I was in classes Monday-Wednesday (that’s right I only have a three-day school week) they explored and toured Rome, seeing all the sights: The Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, The Vatican, the Roman Forums, the Pantheon and St. Peter’s Basilica to name a few. After my classes I would meet them for dinner and drinks and we would recap the inevitably funny events that took place earlier in the day.

After being in Rome for a few days, my sister wanted to take her fiancé and me to a place she used to go to when she studied abroad here a few yeas ago. So, Wednesday night we went to the Ice Club. This is a club that is completely made out of ice- the bar, the walls, the seats, even the glasses- are all ice cold. The temperature is about -5 degrees Celsius, which, for those of us not on the metric system, is about 23 degrees Fahrenheit. When you walk in you receive a large silver insulated cape that is draped over you by a nice Irish man; this did a pretty good job at keeping you toasty while inside the bar. You are then ushered into a small room where you must close the first door before you can open the second door so that the ice inside the club does not melt.

Once inside, we found our own little igloo to hang out in and had some very delicious drinks. It isn’t until about 45 minutes in when you start realizing how cold you are getting. The club was pretty empty when we got there but then slowly started picking up. People just popped in and out at about one-hour increments because, let’s face it, how much longer can you stand in a freezing cold room drinking freezing cold drinks. After about an hour and a half we finished all of our drinks and left to go home.

Ice Club!

The next day consisted of Tee and Matt doing more touristy things and me working on all of my papers and homework so I could enjoy my upcoming weekend in Amsterdam. I met up with them later for lunch at their favorite little deli and we dined and drank wine on their hotel’s rooftop terrace. It was a quaint little area with breathtaking views of the surrounding areas and churches; it was convincing me even more that there was no one else on earth I would rather be in than this beautiful city in this beautiful country full of magnificent history and unbelievable experiences.

Views from the rooftop
Rooftop terrace

We called it an early night because the next morning we needed to be up bright and early ( 3 a.m. to be exact) so we could jet set off to Amsterdam!

“Having a place to go – is a home.  Having someone to love – is a family. Having both – is a blessing.” – Donna Hedges

Published by Alexa Lardieri

I am a reporter and digital producer for the Civic section of U.S. News & World Report, where I write about breaking news. I came to U.S. News in 2016 as a researcher and writer for the Rankings and Reviews section and in 2017, joined the news team, where I helped launch America 2020. I have previously worked for as a reporter and social media specialist and was an editor for several outlets at my alma mater. I am a graduate of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland, College Park. You can follow me on Twitter (@arlardieri) and Facebook (/AlexaRLardieri) or connect with me on LinkedIn (/in/alexa-lardieri).

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