I started ordering double espressos yesterday.

Do the Italians ever sleep?! I feel like I’m in a constant state of yawning and trying to keep my eyelids open for class.

First an ~obligatory~ photo from Wednesday’s lunch of beef tartare (and Tuesday’s dinner of salmon carpaccio because you can’t miss out on those!).

I’m also starting to notice the constant pattern of solely raw meats in my diet…like the caveman, I guess? My dad would be so proud.

Afterwards, I, along with my friends Gregory and Ashley, went to a Gelateria and I got my FIRST real (dairy-filled) gelato! Yes, yes, I cannot actually eat this, but I always said I was going to have the real thing a few times while I’m here. Plus, the pain is 100% worth the gain here, am I right. And from the looks of this beauty, IT TOTALLY WAS.

*had a little accident here*

I can actually write this little digression off under the name of research, as Greg and I are actually working with our friend Matt on a small Italian project on Gelato. So not only were we supposed to visit gelaterias, we also had to interview workers, customers, and yes, get some tastings in!

We obviously had a great time with our “homework.”

That night we had a little family cooking night, as Justyna, Nina, Greg, Cece and I made some Mexican food! Well actually, 1) we didn’t make it, Greg did, as he was very adamant that his kitchen was his kitchen when he’s cooking (you little control freak!) and 2) Greg probably won’t actually let me call it “Mexican”food as the “chilaquiles” we were supposed to have ended up with store-bought salsa, pancetta, feta (the store didn’t have queso fresco), and a really, really random smattering of seasonings. What kind of supermarket doesn’t sell jalapeños or cilantro? It was very strange, and Greg was very offended. Sorry love! But it was still so good! We accept your non-authentic Mexican food<3 Afterwards, Greg taught us how to do some classic Mexican dances and had a little run-in with a cup of water. Peep my Facebook live posts (I know, they’re fire) for the show.


*since you’re stilling getting used to names…from left to right: me, Justyna, Nina, Cece, and Greg…Ashley was the other girl up top!*

I’ve also noticed from these photos that I REALLY need to whip out my actual Nikon camera because dang these selfies are of some rough quality.

ANYWAY, today rolled around (Wednesday that is…no idea when y’all are reading this) and boy did I get STRESSED. First, I didn’t wake up to my alarm, woke up 20 minutes before my class started when I live a 30 minute walk away. Oops? Thank God my teacher was so understanding about showing up late (as long as I explain my mistakes in Italian!!!). Afterwards, Greg, Matt, and I continued to work on our project. Here come the rest of the pictures!!!

If you can’t tell, we were a wee bit bummed when we saw this one shut down. That seems almost Un-American?


Okay but really jailing up a place of sweet, creamy production is just wrong. IT’S WRONG!!!

Afterwards…the stress. Do you know how difficult is to not only register for classes, but also to register for classes in a completely different education system, with classes that don’t overlap, that you like, that can count for your major, minor, or requirements in the proper leveling, all while doing it in ANOTHER LANGUAGE?! Let me go ahead and answer it for you: really hard. I’ll probably find out within a week if my schedule is confirmed, but so far I’m waiting on the OK from 3 Italian classes, 2 political science ones, and a theology one. Please, oh please, Notre Dame, make this easy for me!

After that, I spent 2.5 hours on chat with the Apple Store about my messed up service (if anyone knows how to get my iMessage to work again with my Italian number, hit me up, but dear God don’t tell me to restart it!!!). Anyway, I decided to take a break from the stress and do grocery shopping for my new apartment! You would not believe how FRESH everything is there?!! I saw practically any kind of seafood possible laying out in the open, no glass covering, just ready for pickup. It felt like being next to the ocean (and smelled like it too). And, in true Snyder fashion, I dropped (and broke) an entire glass bottle of pasta sauce in the middle of the checkout line. This was BY FAR my biggest “American” moment yet.

When I got back, I wrote my part of the Gelato paper/project while swinging in my hammock, looking out my window at the city nightscape, and eating prosciutto. Yeah, this really is my life right now, and it doesn’t get much better than this. OH BUT WAIT IT DOES BECAUSE I GOT TO PLAY WITH MY NEW PUPPY RIGHT AFTER.

Dang, I’m happy.



– Alex