Welcome to the land of…Pasta?

Great news: I’m in the coolest city in the entire world (besides Sheboygan, of course).

Not-so-great news: My pictures are taking an eternity to upload here! Not good…because (right now), time is short, and I want to share with you all every detail of my amazing first couple of days in Rome. (“Take-home point:” Please be patient with my blog updates…it’s so frustrating not to be able to update you guys each day, but there’s so much to see and explore (and eat hehe)…I promise there will be updates, but they may be sporadic :))

My arrival in Rome was kind of a whirlwind of emotions. I was happy one minute, crying the next; basically I was the spittin’ image of what you’d call an emotional rollercoaster. I’m so thankful my good friend Julie from back home is my roommate. Without her, I’d truly be a mess. Though the first day was rough, I’ve been so caught up in all the excitement that I really haven’t had a chance to dwell on the fact that I’m thousands of miles away from my family and friends in “the states.”

Our campus is lovely – set up on the northern portion of the city upon a hill. (Positive: great views. Not-so-positive: my calves are gonna kill by the time I come home. Positive: my calves will be very defined when I return home. Not-so-positive: my calves may be manly, bulging-out-of-my-skinny-jeans by the time I get home.) The room is small, but we don’t mind. I took the top bunk, Julie’s on the bottom. Besides the fact that I almost blew up the room with my converter, almost broke Julie’s hairdryer, our fridge was not functioning this morning, our lights mysteriously don’t work anymore, the room gets CAT (Layne, Linnea get that?) (i.e. chilly) at night and in the early morning, the room is great! No, but all funny stuff aside, it couldn’t be a better place to stay. I’m in Rome…what do I expect, the Ritz-Carlton? (Isn’t everything in Rome known for falling apart anyways? Adds character. Or so I tell myself.)

Since I’m running short on time (and these files are downloading at the speed of a tortoise with his legs chopped off), I’m gonna get to the real reason why you’re creeping /stalking following my blog (oh wait, that’s just Linnea? :)): THE CHOW.

Here’s a little rundown of what I’ve tasted so far:

The first meal at the Mensa (our on-campus caf) – hearty potato gnocchi bathing in a slightly sweet marinara sauce. (Layne, I SOOOO thought of you when I was eating this! Reminiscent of our red pepper gnocchi…but so much better :))

A quick jaunt to the local supermercado had me return to my room with a bag of these delicious biscuit-type crackers in tow:

A (thankfully) light, minestrone soup…the bowl filled-to-the-brim with tender vegetables and al dente pasta (they truly cook their pasta more al dente here; not as “soft” as we seem to make it in the U.S.):

Last night’s group dinner (at a nearby restaurant) was seriously outstanding. Like, knock-your-socks-off outstanding. Up to bat? An apperitivo of  warm, fresh-outta-the-oven buns stuffed with a whole mix of good eats: some had fresh mozzarella and tomato, others had anchovies (I passed on those), the one I had contained a thin cold-cut:

 I’m not kidding when I tell you this may have been my favorite part of the meal 🙂 I can’t emphasize how fresh this thing was.

For the entree, the waiters brought out steaming plates of rigatoni-type pasta al dente, natch, in, again, a red sauce (they say that’s better for your heart, ya know!):

I’m not a hugeeee fan of chocolate desserts, but I sure took a few bites of this bad boy: a chocolate layer on top (sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar), a wafer-thin cracker inside of that, and then the hidden suprise of a cream bottom layer.

Here’s to new friends:

And an old one, of course 🙂

Making our wishes into the Trevi fountain! (Though, naturally, I forgot to make a wish.)

I hate to do this, but I gotta run. Ciao!


About ciaotochow

ciao to chow: initially created as a little spot on the web devoted to the "chow" I find while studying abroad in Rome. But really, ciao to chow is about my life: the day-to-day experiences, funny stories, moments of laughter, and the food...that continue to inspire me and make me grateful for each new day.
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14 Responses to Welcome to the land of…Pasta?

  1. MareMare says:

    Anna, Thanks so much for the post — I’m still pinchin’ my thigh that you are in Rome!! Absolutely luv the photos, especially of you and J at Trevi — tell Julie that I still think she belongs on the Nightly News. . .in FRONT of the camera!! Miss you, but love you more!! xxxooo

  2. dad says:

    Was that a glass of wine in the background? I thought you were 20???? 🙂

    • Your NJ Godmother says:

      I was wondering the same thing but in Italy, don’t they start drinking wine when they are still in diapers? When in Rome…

  3. What was that chocolate dessert called?

  4. I am so jealous of your life right now! My friend studied abroad in Rome and I visited her for a week. Such a beautiful city! Enjoy it!!!

    • ciaotochow says:

      Thanks! Guess what? Last night, a couple of my friends and I hit up Old Bridge gelateria. Um…it was, in a word, INCREDIBLE. I had a combo of the hazelnut and caramel; don’t worry, I’ll post pictures sometime in the future 🙂

  5. My sister studied abroad and same with so many other bloggers it seems! I’m one jealous chick, sitting in my own home! 😦 haha.

    I hope your emotions continue to stay stable! I hate emotional rollercoasters! They are my least favorite ride for sure!

    • ciaotochow says:

      Grazie for the support, girl! I’m trying to keep reminding myself how lucky I am to be here right now — trying to soak it all in and realize how truly blessed I am, that’s for sure!

  6. Layne says:

    Hey lady! Everything there already looks fantastic! Your room is so cute :o) Hope you continue to have lots of fun adventures, MISS YOU!!

  7. Uhh everything loosk delicious. I was in Rome for a few days this summer and it was amazing, I’m so jealous! I’m debating doing a study abroad program there, but still kind of unsure about how it’ll work out with classes… sigh.

    What program are you there with, if you dont’ mind my asking?

  8. LinnE says:

    Hehehehe how dare you accuse me of stalking/creeping??? That is soooo not my thang. And i’m not exaggerating when I say that I literally shrieked when I finally translated CAT.. Very classy mnemonic. Anyways the food looks amazing (as do you 😉 hehe) and we’ll skype soon. Love you!

  9. Pingback: Family = Craziness, Family = Love | ciaotochow

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