Day 2 was jam packed. We woke up (late) at 8:15, missed breakfast, and went straight to orientation at the school which was a total of about 4 hours of power points. Then we got our Italian phones (yay!) which is great because I felt nervous about carryin my my iPhone, apparently they are 800 euro here and about 7 people in the last group got their pickpocketed. Marie, two other girls and I went to find coffee as soon as we got a break. There are shops everywhere and the coffee is amazing. There is no such thing as the coffee we drink in America so we usually order a "cafe" which is espresso or a cappuccino. They are AMAZINGim already addicted. In the afternoon they let us walk around Rome and find where our host houses were. Mine and Marie's is far on the map but in reality it's only 5 metro stops away so it doesn't take a long time together. We walked EVERYWHERE yesterday which was really because we're starting to get oriented. The metro is quite an experience. It seems pretty reliable so far but they aren't very nice and you really do need to watch your things. It's not unsafe in terms of my safety but I do worry about the pickpocketing there more than anywhere else so far. I'm definitely getting more comfortable with it thought because we took it all over the city yesterday.
We walked to the trevi fountain and WOW it looks just like the postcards and pictures. If possible I think it's even more beautiful. I took a couple of pictures there, which hopefully I'll be able to post soon! After that we walked to the Spanish steps and sat and talked for a while and hung out on them until a street vendor really aggressively tried to sell us roses. They DO NOT let up and god help you when they find out you're American. So we just got up and walked away. We found a little cafe/bar and Marie and I had a glass of wine and bruschetta. Then we need to meet the group for dinner and luckily we were already in the right area but even so it took is forever to find it. We aske about 5 Italians! Sidenote: we've noticed that at least trying to speak Italian to them goes a long way. Most of the time even when we do they can tell we're American and switch to English but they are so much nicer if you just try. And everyone we asked for help was so nice and genuinely tried to help us out and took time to look at the map and figure it out.
So we finally found the place and we weren't even the last ones there! It was a cute local pizzeria hat was really really good. Marie and I got mushroom pizza that was fantastic and pretty good wine too. After dinner we all went back to the hotel and got ready to go out for the first time! What an adventure.
We've been in the hotel with all the catholic kids which has been fun. The girls are mostly a bit standoffish but the boys are nice and there around 10 of them. So almost our whole group and all the boys from Catholic went out to a bar we'd heard of called abbey theater. It was an Irish pub so not very Italian but that was ok for our first night especially. We all walked there together it was probably around a mile away maybe a little more. Good thing it's so warm here now! We got there and it was a lot of English and Irish people and some Italians and we made some English and Irish friends who live and work in Rome and were very welcoming. It was a great night, so much fun.
Today we meet our host families! So excited to finally get settled but also nervous. Thank god I have Marie with me or I'd be a wreck! I'll update soon!