Friday, 30 December 2005

Barcelona French Fling

I never dreamed I'd actually get into a fling...much less with a French guy. Those 4 French guys staying in the same room? Well went out with them last night for a drink at a bar and though they didn't speak much English, we did actually manage to communicate. Had lotsa attention coz I was the only girl since Bovy decided she wasn't feeling well enough to go.

I must say that French guys are really something. Definitely way better than Italians. For one thing, they aren't cheap. They bought my drink. Then when we were walking back, all of them were finding some opportunity to hold my hand or put an arm around my waist. It was definitely very flattering for my female ego. Luckily for me, I only really like one of so at least I didn't have to make a choice as to which one I'd go for!! Hahaha

French guys are definitely great kissers...and wonderful for a fling coz of the language barrier. It's a pity I'm leaving today although he did try very hard to get me to extend my stay in Barcelona. I must say that I was sorely tempted, if I hadn't already paid €70 for my bus trip back to Paris and booked my accomodation and bought disneyland tix. Ah well, I suppose at least I'll have some nice memories! 8p Now just where has the conservative me gone?

Wednesday, 28 December 2005


Being sick on a holiday sux. Here I am in Barcelona and I've just wasted the entire day staying in the hostel coz I was sick. I threw up when there was nothing to chuck (which is the worst kinda feeling) and I've still got a headache and I keep getting chills. I'd planned a full itinery for today too, but now I'm gonna have to revamp the entire itinery to make up for lost time.

On the upside, we met some cute French guys who are staying in the same room. They're design students from southern France. The downside is that I'm although they invited us to join them to go out clubbing, I don't feel up to going. Argh! They don't speak much English though, but one of them is really hot... Sigh. They're gonna be around tomorrow though so maybe we can go out with them then.

I might as well have not taken a course in French for all the French I can speak. Everything I wanna say comes out in Italian. On the upside, I can actually understand some Spanish since it's so similar to Italian. Italian is still stuck on me though when I find myself saying 'Sì' instead of 'oui' and 'grazie' instead of 'gracias' and going 'ciao' pretty much all the time. The whole language switching thing as you cross borders really mucks up your brain...

Monday, 26 December 2005


Merry Chirstmas to everyone! Spent Christmas eve at the Eiffel Tower and we walked for 16 hours that day. The Eiffel Tower was real crowded. It seemed everyone wanted to climb the Eiffel Tower that day! It's definitely worth going up though. From the top they tell you in which direction different countries in the world are and how far it's from Paris. Wellington is almost 19 000km away...definitely one of the furthest. The view of Paris at night from the top of the tower is fantastic...a very romantic spot.

I attended the midnight mass at Notre Dame...and yep all of Paris wanted to attend too. It was so crowded and they had to get police control. It was in french though, but the gospel was in English. The choir was it would be for such a grand affair.

We met some of the other backpackers in the same hostel yesterday. They're from Canada...asian Canadians who speak better French and understand more French than Mandarin. We spent the day with them, went to see the Moulin Rouge, which was really disappointing compared to what it looked like in the movie. The one in the movie is more impressive! I'd have liked to watch one of the cabaret shows, but the cheapest tickets for the shows cost more than €80! One would think that with those kinda prices, they could have renovated the exterior...make it more impressive. As it is, it was kinda small.

We ended the night at this fantastic french restaurant with the Canadians which wasn't too expensive I guess. Then went to Place de la Concorde for a ride on the ferris wheel. Bovy was squealing the entire time...she doesn't like moving heights much. She squealed going up the Eiffel Tower as well. One of the guys mentioned he saw a guy propose to his girlfriend at the top of the Eiffel Tower yesterday. Pretty romantic...and of course she said yes. He said he didn't think the tower was romantic until he witness that and now he would like his future wife to propose to him at the top of the tower too! I think a proposal at the top of the tower is kinda romantic I guess, but not too original.

We're leaving for Barcelona tomorrow, to begin phase 2. Time is really flying! It was kinda sad having to say goodbye to the new friends, but we're probably gonna see them in Germany in Cologne coz they're on exchange there. One of them, we're gonna see him again when we get back to Paris coz we're going to Versailles together. Should be interesting, together with the countdown in Disneyland Paris! My sister is gonna be so jealous!

Friday, 23 December 2005


It's phase 1 of the Big Europe Trip. I saw Wouter off at the bus station the morning I left for Paris...and was trying desperately not to cry (without much success). I think the people at the bus station must have thought I was nose, running get the picture. Saying goodbye is always the hardest for the people staying behind.

Anyway, as I was saying, the Big Europe Trip has begun. I can't quite believe I'm in Paris...seeing the Eiffel Tower, and going to the Louvre. It's pretty surreal. the hostel I'm at is kinda awful...they don't have an elevator and we had to carry all our luggage up 3 flights of stairs!! It smelled bad and there wasn't much lighting in the rooms either. Staff isn't very friendly and they lock you out from 10 to 3pm. For those who wish to stay in Paris, my advice is don't stay at Auberge Internationale Jeune (I think that's the name, or something pretty similar). Despite the lousy accomodation, Paris is fantastic. You can really tell the difference between buildings in France and Italy...even though they're almost as old as each other.

Bovy and I paid a visit to the Louvre today...mainly to see the Mona Lisa. It's not very impressive though. was kinda like ok this is the Mona Lisa and that's it. Nothing very 'wow'. There were some really nice paintings though, especially Galerie de vues de la Rome moderne and Galerie de vues de la Rome antique. They were my 2 favourite paintings in the Louvre. The medival section of the Louvre is kinda creepy, being underground and it was especially creepy close to closing time when no one was about. Think dark and chilly and bare. You'd expect to see something floating towards you any minute. I'd hate to get lost down there! The Louvre building itself is really impressive being so long. We never got to see everything and after awhile you get bored...

Gonna scale the Eiffel Tower tomorrow. I can't believe it's almost Christmas!

Tuesday, 20 December 2005

End of Exchange

Another chapter of my life has ended, with exams being over and everyone leaving. Funny how fast time goes. I really hate to leave and to say goodbye, knowing that chances of seeing certain friends you've made again are pretty slim.

Despite all it's shortcomings, I'm gonna miss's nightlife, the great (if non punctual) transport system, aperitivos...and yes, pizza and pasta. There's no pizza anywhere like in Italy. Or mozzarella. Think brick oven, traditionally baked pizzas.

Definitely, what I'll miss most are the people...even returning to Italy in future won't be the same coz the people make the difference. Actually I still can't quite believe I've been in Italy. I think maybe it'll really hit only after I'm gone.

Naturally the people I'll miss most will be Bovy and Wouter. I'm gonna be travelling with Bovy all around Europe over the next month, but we'll only see Wouter some time in January when we go over to the Netherlands. I'm gonna miss seeing him everyday... As Alex, my roommate would say 'Charlie's Angels' is no more. We're going to Simon's tomorrow to hang out and stay up the whole night...and cry over saying goodbyes. Did I mention how I hate saying goodbye?

Friday, 2 December 2005

Turning 20

Gosh time really flies…can’t believe my birthday just came and went like that! Not that I didn’t have a good time of course, I had really good friends to celebrate with and it was one of the best birthdays I’ve ever had. It started off the night before, watching a movie with Wouter and Bovy until midnight when they surprised me by bringing in lighted candles and singing happy birthday. It was so sweet…but then I wouldn’t call them my best friends for nothing would I?

I’d actually intended to just pass my birthday quietly…probably just with Wouter and Bovy, but my room mate objected to that…she’s definitely more of a party girl than I am…so I ended up inviting about 20 people to dinner at this Chinese restaurant where some friends had been too before and said it was great. And so it was…good food, good friends, great birthday. 8) They even ordered a cake thing and asked for a candle to be put in as a substitute birthday cake. They tried to get me drunk though, ordering a glass of grappa which is about 70% alcohol and telling me I had to drink it. They didn’t know it was so strong….and neither did I but we figured since it was served in such a huge portion, it couldn’t have been too bad. I mean, pure vodka is served in shots and this drink came in a portion similar to a full wine glass…which lead me to make the huge mistake of taking a gulp from the glass, because if it was gonna taste bad might as well take it like a shot right? I nearly died….or came close to anyway. It totally burned like drinking liquid fire…and it burned for awhile. Of course I didn’t finish the drink (if I did I’d probably be in hospital right now) and I passed the drink around for them to try the poison they just tried to feed me lol.

Speaking of alcohol, I received a bottle of liquor from Will and a bottle of wine from Ben and Mike (figures it’ll be the guys who give alcohol 8p). How it’s all gonna be consumed by the time I leave beats me. Fiona and co got me this really nice scarf, which would certainly come in useful for when I head to Sweden and Finland! Pietro gave me roses. Wouter and Bovy got me something, but it’s not here yet or not ready yet…and I’m dying of curiosity juz wondering what it is.

Originally I’d intended to go out clubbing after dinner so I gave Will the roses and wine (since he lives 2 doors down from me) to take back. He was being accommodating since it was my birthday, although he looked funny carrying 4 roses and a bottle of wine walking down the street. When I cancelled plans to go clubbing and decided to head home instead, he and Julie disappeared…alone, so I couldn’t relieve him from the task of carrying wine and roses. Must have been a sight though, he had wine, roses and a girl…now all that was missing was the guitar…