Hellooooo friends! I’m feigning excitement tonight because this has been one exhaaausstttinnggg week. Not only have I completely stopped eating like a “college student on a budget studying abroad in Italy” (those pounds add up, y’all), but I’ve also started to get back into my workout grind (in the midst of finals studying…timing, much?). So, it’s been quite the eventful week!

Last Friday our “Cibo” class (a class about Italian food and its history) headed to the beautiful city of Forlimpopoli, the birthplace of the very first cookbook by Pellegrino Artusi, entitled “La Scienza in Cucina e l’Arte di Mangiar Bene (Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well).” It’s about an hour outside of Bologna, which you can see on these maps:

We toured the Casa Artusi, so defined (at least by their website) as “the very first centre of gastronomic culture to be established, devoted entirely to Italian home cookery.” If you want to learn more about this super cool dude and the legacy he left behind, check out the website here:http://www.casartusi.it/en/about-us/ 

One of the coolest parts of touring the Casa was an old-styled piano (more along the lines of a music box) in the library that plays by cranking holed paper through it. Honestly, I’m not great at explaining this, so I’ll just go ahead and show you a snippet of our show, feat. Montanari, our professor of the course.

After touring, we got a cooking lesson from one of the main chefs at the Cookery School inside the Casa, and then dined at their restaurant. Treated to multiple courses directly from the cookbook, it was like a taste-test of the past. And just look at that pasta!

After our meal, we got to tour the city on our own and found a nice little cafe to get some wine and good conversation before heading back home. I was pretty tired after the long day, so I put on a little face mask and vegged out in my bed to the glory that is Ru Paul’s Drag Race (please, do yourself a favor and watch this show). This was my relaxing aesthetic for the night (and all of Saturday…).


I slept in pretty dang late Sunday (Ru Paul had me up ’til the wee hours of the morning the night before), but for dinner, Ceci, Sarah, and I had a little ladies’ night at our favorite all-you-can-eat sushi restaurant with a little vino to take the stress away from Ceci’s insane finals studying. You can imagine our excitement from this video:

Isn’t my Bitmoji cute? Thanks to my little cousin Mollie Moo for making it for me! She said that I had to wear a “nurse outfit” because nurses are girl doctors and doctors are boy doctors. Well, at least her 9 year-old-brain got at least my future field right! Love you and miss you sweet girl.

Monday felt like it was completely spent in libraries, and Greg and I spent HOURS searching for a book for our political science course. Three hours later, we found the book (one of four things we were wanting to find…) and I felt some big embarrassment for my attire. Little did I know libraries in Italy were…fancy…??

After a quick meal, I went on one of my first runs in FOREVER. It was so cool seeing my neighborhood when I’m not in a rush to get somewhere or have other things on my mind. Here is a little image of my run, the loopedy-loop-loop-looping it was (and relax people, three of those miles were just walking!!!).


Tuesday was rather lackluster. It started with a morning HIIT workout, and then Greg and I met with one of our professors to talk about the upcoming final (and our crazy nerves for it), went to class, did some homework, ate a meal that looked like dog food, and went to bed. But don’t worry, found a cool filter on the way!

Wednesday morning I was up around 6 am to go to the hospital and shadow the cardio surgeon I have met with in the past. I got to see three heart intervention procedures and learn about the whole process done the Italian way. It’s funny, because this doctor does a lot of the same things that my mom does, but done in an Italian system it’s an entirely different world. I think it’s so cool and so important to see the different ways people implement the same ideas and procedures in an entirely different context. Can’t wait to go again! This was my proud self for waking up early after only four hours of sleep and getting my little booty past the two-mile walk to the hospital. Yay, responsibility!


Afterwards, I headed to the office to prep for my oral presentation for my language course, a presentation I did on Obama’s speech in Milan on climate change and his continued efforts with Matteo Renzi to combat its dangers. Here’s a little glimpse of my quirky (and always political) project (featuring The Donald’s tweets and all!).

I was a little shaky on my Italian, but overall it went pretty well! I tried to use that satisfied energy to get some studying done after class, but my very sleep-deprived (and physically exhausted) self needed to go BED! I was in bed by 7 pm but probably fell asleep around 9, and didn’t wake up until…noon the next day!!! Reintroducing a lot of exercise, studying stress, and a different diet into your system (on top of only sleeping 4-5 hours two nights in a row) can really wreck a girl!

But once the 15 hours of rest kicked in, I was ready to GO! We had our final Cibo class, and then Greg and I studied for our political science course for the rest of the day. If you’re wondering what course I keep referring to, it’s called “STORIA DEL PENSIERO POLITICO MEDIEVALE” or “History of Medieval Political Thought.” If you are a poly-sci fiend like me, you can learn more about the class using this link: http://www.artshumanitiesculturalheritage.unibo.it/en/programmes/course-unit-catalogue/course-unit/2016/320787

Here is an overview of what the final will cover, but it’s in Italian, so if you just scroll past I won’t judge you.


It’s pretty stressful studying for this course because, not only is it in Italian (like the rest of our courses), but it’s about a pretty complicated topic, so needless to say our stress levels have greatly increased. And look at this face we have to present to for the final…wouldn’t that stress you out too!?!


To relieve some of that pent up angst, I went on another run, but this time around Greg’s neighborhood. He lives near the main street of the University (Via Zamboni), and it was a Thursday night, so it was pretty lively and invigorating to run around. Here is a little image of my run, too!


Again, you judgmental gym rats, 3.78 of those miles were JUST WALKING. Let’s chill out, y’all!

After the exhausting day, I walked another 1.5 miles home while FaceTiming my mom (hi mom, miss you, mean it), stretched for what felt like hours, and now it’s 3:24 am in the morning and I’m blogging. Priorities…?? Luckily we don’t have class tomorrow, so I’m going to get to sleep in some, get a solid four hours, then head back to Greg’s for another day of…the medieval. Hooray!?

And like I said, it’s 3:24 in the morning and this is a long blog post, so no, I’m not going to edit it, and you’re just going to have to be okay with that. Will there be spelling errors? Yes. Will I mess up “your, you’re” or “their, there, they’re”? More than likely. Will my run-on sentences be just a little too much? Absolutely. But I’m way too tired to really care, y’all. Plus, it gives it character, right?

Night night, my lovelies.




– Alex