Tuesday, July 29, 2008
I experianced my first true Cali earthquake and it was acutally really fun! It wasn't that bad but it was fun to sway back and forth. Tere is a loft in my building that hangs half way over my office. I was just sitting here typing and suddenly we started to sway and shake back and forth. I realized it was an earthquake but was just going to ride it out cause it wasn't that bad when suddenly I heard a funny noise from the loft above and I booked it out of my office so fast! I was afraid it was going to fall down onto me! Luckily nothing happened. The phone lines were totally jammed after for about 1 hour. It was way trippy because just yesterday we were all talking about how my friend Jenna had never felt an earthquake and then Michael asked us if there was an earthquake right now, where would we go? Knock on wood, I think we jixed SoCal!
John and I just got back from Italy and it was AMAZING! His cousin was getting married so we decided to go with Johns family. His sister Kelly, her husband Pete, their daughter Mackenzie, and John's other sister Jennifer all joined the fun! It was wonderful and I wish I could write more but I started at the end and now I feel like my fingers are going to fall off! Anyway, to start, here is my favorite pic of John and I. It's basically the only one where nobodies looks sweaty shiny and half way decent, the weather was so hot and humid!
We stayed in Cinque Terra, on the west coast on the Mediterranean Sea. Cinque Terra is made up of 5 small towns and we stayed in Riomaggiore, the farthest town south. It was absolutely picturesque. THey are all built on cliffs so it's all up hill, at least it felt that way when you're walking everywhere! By the end fo the trip, I swear my calves have never looked better! All these pics are intermingeled of the towns together. We had such a blast in Riomaggiore. It was the sleepest of the 5 towns and I think that's why it suited everyone best. To explain the pics: the frog was just sitting in the middle of a walkway and I almost stepped on it! John had an underwater camera and he took it out into the sea with him and Mackenzie and her dad Pete. There was a big rock out there and they were standing on it, jumping off. I just love the pic of Mackenzie jumping off, she looks like a mermaid statue on the front of the old ships! The pic of the guy with the afro under water, he joined them out by the rock and kept insisting that John take his picture under water. He turned out to be a world renowned concert pianist and we went to his concert one night! We still didnt' really believe he was terribly famous until I was flipping channels and there he was on BBC, interviewing! In Vernazza, I think it's the third town south, there was a little chapel that you could light a candel and say a prayer. John and his sister Kelly lit a candle for their mom Carole. She was supposed to come with us but she passed away in November. About the middle are two pictures of John's family: John, sister Kelly, daughter Mackenzie, Kelly's husband Pete, and John's sister Jennifer. The one with their lips pursed is becuase we were just joking about how the Olsen twins say "prunes" when they get their photo taken to make their lips fuller to they are saying "prunes!" The rest are pretty much us having fun and being silly!
Rome was my least favorite, only because it took 4 hours to get there by train, then we had to take four hours back to our town. It was hot, smelly, dirty, and we only got to see the colluseum and the ruins becuase we had about 5 hours to spend there. We got off the train then took the subway to the colluseum. It was cool because you walk out of the station and bam! there is the colluseum. It was pretty cool to see. Almost the entire building is made of bricks. John's brother in law Pete had a good comment...not only did they build it brick by brick, they also had to make the bricks first. Haha, I don't know why this suprised me to think, it's not like they had a Home Depot! One part that was lame was there were basically no signs telling you about the colluseum, you had to take the guided tour to get any of the info-boring! My favorite part was the pic of the "floor" of the colluseum - the floor itself was removed underneath was were they kept the fighters, slaves, and animals so you could see the walkways and cells.
We didn't stay long in there, once youre in youre pretty much done. We walked across the way to the ruins and hung out a bit. It was so hot the only thing that saved us was the little vendor selling frozen bottles of water.
A little about the trains...apparently Italians are not very concerned with proper sewage control. The train toilets have a white ball at the bottom. When you flush, the ball disappears and the waste is just dumped on the tracks below. It was a bit gross, to say the least. John said it was common knowledge that it was common courtesy to not use the bathrooms while you were at a stop, so that the people at the stations didn;t have to smell the pee and poop. Yuck! The train coming back from Rome didn't have the balls at the bottom so you look down the toilet and you just see the tracks zoomin on by!
Not much to say about this town except the leaning tower was cool to see. I thought it was much taller and was unimpressed by its height but the architect is beautiful, it's made of all marble. the best part was seeing all the people lined up the their arm in the air! Here are the obligator pics of us holding the tower up, and one of John sister Jennifer and I taking a break from the sun in the towers shade.