So, It’s been two weeks since I’ve started my European adventures, and it was been an AMAZING time. There’s so many times I have to take a minute and just sit and remind myself that I’m really doing this. Just tonight, as Johnny and I were walking home in Rome, he looked over to me and said:
“Hey…Sheryll. We’re in Rome, eating gelato on our walk home, and there’s a huge castle to our right. How is this our lives?” And I’d have to agree. It’s sort of crazy.
But as I’ve now been gone for 2 weeks, there are things I’m learning every single day, and I thought I’d share.
Bring Comfortable Underwear
Yeah. I said it. I’m traveling with Johnny, so I bought a bunch of really cute, lacy, underwear. Cute for the bedroom, but completely impractical for walking around for 9 hours. It rides up, the lace is itchy, etc. etc. Cotton boy shorts all the way from now on.
Don’t rely on your hostel’s/apartment’s/hotel’s directions
Yeah. When we got to Rome, we got on the wrong train (twice), and then we were going to get on a third wrong train before I saw the one we were finally supposed to be on. Then, the directions the owner of the apartment we were staying in were completely vague. As in, “the apartment is 200 meters from the train station”. Um….what? And yes, it’s my fault for not looking up directions myself and not having a map. So…don’t do what I did.
Learn a few key phrases in each language
This is a no brainer, but I saw so many other tourists that were just completely rude to people in Rome because they don’t speak English. Well of course they don’t speak fucking English, they’re Italian! So don’t be an asshole, learn how to say things like Thank You, Please, Excuse Me, Do you speak English?, Where is the bathroom?, numbers, etc. It’ll help a TON. Trust me.
Don’t Stick to the Schedule
Everyone has a different travel style. Some people make a schedule, and make sure to stick to it completely. I thought I would be that way when I came to Europe, but I’ve found that when you let yourself just wander, you end up finding the most awesome places ever. That’s just how I found the Basement Tea Room in Camden, and the best cannoli I’ve ever had in my entire life in Rome. Let life surprise you!
Mexican Food Just Isn’t The Same
And yes, I know I’m in freaking Europe, so I’m not expecting the Mexican food here to be good, but damn. It’s actually somewhat tragic. And yes, I know there’s a million different types of food to try, but damnit… I miss tacos already. And it’s just not the same.
Always Know Where the Closest Laundry is Located
This is a BIGGIE for me. I’m pretty grossed out by dirty clothes, and I made sure to bring enough for 1 week without having to wear the same thing twice (except jeans). We were lucky in London to have a laundry right across the street from our apartment, but in Rome we had to walk about 1.5km to the closest one. You never want to be stuck on the day when you don’t have any clean clothes left, trying to google a place that’s open late nights (like I did). Find out the first day you get to your location. (Unless you’re lucky and the place you are staying as a laundry room…then ignore all of this.)
Wear the right shoes
So…those cute shoes I brought? I want to throw them in a river. I mean…they are comfortable, not I definitely did not bring shoes that I can use to see the ruins in Rome, or maybe hiking when I go to Madeira. I’m thinking I may have to go shopping in Paris for a pair of comfortable boots that are more multi-functional.
Johnny is Awesome (like…really awesome)
Traveling with Johnny has just been the most amazing experience. He and I have been getting along wonderfully (for the most part), and we actually work together great as a traveling team. He’s gotten along with all of the other awesome bloggers I’ve met, and he’s always there for a massage at the end of the night when my feet are about to fall off because they hurt so bad.
Life is seriously too short to be stressed. Enjoy that you are traveling, indulge in all the awesome food, and order dessert. Nine times out of 10, it’s always worth it. And when you get lost, know that everything will ALWAYS work out. Trust me.