Thoughts from Paris

This past week in Paris, I decided to venture on my own for a little bit. After leaving the Lourve, where I stayed for four hours with my parents, I decided to head to the Museum of Modern Art. It was about a 49 minute walk, or a 7 minute taxi ride. Being the fit & fun & frugal gal that I am (haha), I decided to walk it. The walk was long, but enjoyable. It went very quickly and I enjoyed having some time to myself. I walked along the Seine river and saw some amazing views of the city.

As I walked, I thought about how I would be the only one to ever have this memory. I would be the only one to remember both the disappointment of realizing that the MoMA was closed and the excitement when I stumbled along a cute bookstore. This, to me, is very special. I really like the idea of traveling alone. At some point in my life, I plan to travel alone. Where I’ll go? Who knows. Wherever I want!

Paris, France

Welp, as you can tell, I kind of fell off of the blogging train during my trip to Europe. I may not have electronically documented proof that I traveled to said countries, but the memories and written notes that I brought back to the States are enough for me. However, while in Paris, I did make a list of everything that I did on each day. I will post the list here, more for myself than anyone else. Nonetheless, feel free to read along. Perhaps even close your eyes and imagine that you were there yourself! It was magical!!

PARIS, FRANCE

The evening that we got there:

  • Walked around (Notre Dame, Shakespeare Bookstore, Love Locks on the bridge)
  • Lunch at a random restaurant near the hotel because it was raining
  • Dinner at the restaurant by the sand park
  • Oyster snack after dinner with a nice man that had a neck brace
  • Gelato (the first of many late-night gelato trips!!!)

Day 1:

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Catacombs — our guide was a bit slow, but very informational; lots of bones.
  • Delicious lunch; ravioli and rocket salad (this was in the Francisco Square)
  • Conciergerie — a prison where people were kept before their executions (no executions actually took place here). There was a chapel for Marie Antionette, where her jail cell was located.
  • Cemetery — Oscar Wilde & Jim Morrison
  • Oysters for dinner // Thompson’s had Indian food by the hotel
  • Gelato — same place as the night before (our favorite!!!)

Day 2:

  • Flea Market — lots of antiques and whatnot
  • Lipp Restaurant for Lunch
  • Museo de Orsay
  • Met up with backpackers — Hannah, Kevin, Adran, Mason, Chika, Emily H., Marc, Sarah M.
  • Eiffel Tower at night and a crepe (dark chocolate)
  • Wine @ Airbnb

    Got to meet up with some PLC pals that were backpacking. We went for crepes, to the tower, and back to their Airbnb.

Day 3:

  • Lourve — we had a very nice and informational guide
  • Lunch at the Lourve — sandwich on a nice baguette
  • Walking adventure (MoMA was closed, walked 7 miles alone)
  • Fru-fru fancy 5-course dinner // the Thompson’s ate Mexican food!

    Mona Lisa at the Lourve.

Day 4:

  • Disneyland Paris
  • Chicken wrap for lunch @ the Park
  • Middle Eastern buffet for dinner @ the Park
  • Joe & Rebecca:
    • Restaurant Supply Market
    • Food area by The Market
    • Lunch @ delicatessen (long ham and cheese sandwich, torta, raspberry pastry)
    • Dinner @ Chez Ferdnand

      Disneyland Paris

Day 5:

  • Versailles — we had a great guide (Serge). The gardens were amazing (and my favorite part)!! It was also interesting to see all of the bedrooms.
  • Lunch at Versailles — salad with pine nuts and Brie cheese
  • Italian Dinner — truffle pasta, pizza, etc.

    Me in the gardens in Versailles

Photos from Italy

Capri was a dream! We had a private boat take us to a place where we were able to swim and cliff dive.
Capri, Italy
Pasta making in Arezzo, Italy. We learned how to make ravioli and spaghetti.
I had to…. Pisa, Italy
Meredith and I had lots of fun pasta making! Arezzo, Italy
We took a tour of a winery in Arezzo, Italy and it was the perfect photo op!
At the top of the Duomo in Florence, Italy.
Something familiar in the outskirts of Rome, Italy.
Me throwing the only coin I had (2 Euro, argh!!) into the Trevi Fountain in Rome, Italy.
With my gals in the Colosseum in Rome, Italy.
A “Spritzer” in Rome, Italy
Wine with my gal, Ivy.

 

New Year Resolutions Update

Guess who hardly held any of her New Years Resolutions??? THIS GIRL!!

I have been going to bed earlier…. as for the rest of them, however, it’s a little iffy. This semester was academically and personally challenging. Despite the fact that I did not uphold my resolutions, I am happy and feel that 2017 has been a great year. Throughout the rest of this year, I am going to try to “live out” the resolutions.

Better late than never, right?

Small

“List three words that you would use to describe yourself.”

This is a question that I have been asked hundreds of times between leadership camps and interviews. Despite all of this practice, I have always struggled to answer this question. Three words to describe me?

I am organized — no question about it. I’m funny — despite the fact that I laugh at my own jokes AND I’m probably the only person that would describe myself this way. I am decisive — unless it comes to ordering at restaurants.

However, right now, I have never been more sure of a word to describe myself: small.

Over the past 3 weeks, I have traveled through Italy with some of my closest friends. I have been to Rome, Vatican City (does that count???), Florence, Sienna, Arezzo, Pisa, Viareggio, Pompeii, Sorrento, Capri, and Positano.

These places have all contributed to making me feel small. Now, I don’t mean to say that I feel insignificant or weak. I simply feel that there is so much of this world that I haven’t explored. Sure, the world is big. But this is the first time in my life where I have truly acknowledged this.

I have just arrived in Paris, France. I’m going to spend about a week here before heading back to the states. Upon my arrival home, I’ll share some of my pictures and experiences.

Goodbye for now!

International Event #3: Mr and Miss Hispanic OU

I attended the Mr and Miss Hispanic OU Pageant on Saturday, April 22nd. At the parent, participants competed in several categories including talent, cultural presentation, formal wear, and an interview. The presentation was very interesting and culturally relevant. Much of the presentation, in fact, was in Spanish. The cultural presentations varied in composition. One competitor read a monologue about the struggles of not being a citizen of the United States. Other participants recited slam poetry, did a cultural dance, and presented photography from their home country. In the interview portion, the contestants were asked a single question. Most of the questions asked pertained to the struggle of the Hispanic population in America today. These questions addressed a variety of topics ranging from sexual assault in the Hispanic population, to the use of technology in today’s population.

All of the competitors were fantastic, however, the winners of the pageant were very deserving. They had clearly prepared and worked very hard to perfect their performances.

International Event #2: Career Benefits of Studying Abroad

I attended an informational session entitled the Career Benefits of Studying Abroad. This event was hosted by the Price College of Business. This was a very helpful session, as it explained how studying abroad is beneficial in the long-run and how to study abroad as a Business Major. This event made studying abroad seem much more realistic and gave me the opportunity to see several options that would help me advance in my business coursework and have a study abroad experience. The person giving the presentation noted on an opportunity at the University of Seville. There is a fantastic semester-long business program there. This is something that I am very interested in. In the seminar, the speaker also discussed how students that have studied abroad in college generally have a higher starting salary than their counterparts. How cool is that — I get to have the time of my life studying abroad AND get paid more for it??? Sign me up!

The African Doctor

This semester, my international group is the “Foreign Film Club.” This group has only had one meeting this far, although I am sure that another is on the horizon. The meeting took place on Thursday, February 23rd. There was pizza, and we watched the movie “The African Doctor.” Actually, correction, we did not get to watch the film. After about an hour of messing with several AV cords and brainstorming potential solutions, we were forced to quit. That, however, did not stop me! I went home and immediately watched the film. I was pleasantly surprised by the humor in the comedy-drama, as I was expecting it to be sad. The film is about a man from Africa who attends a French medical school. After being offered a prestigious job working as a personal doctor to the president, the doctor decides to take a job in a small village. Although his family is disappointed that they are living in such a small and rural area, he slowly becomes one of the best doctors in the region. I really enjoyed this film. It was a comedic take on a serious subject. The doctor, Dr. Zantoko, deals with a variety of issues, all of which he takes with a grain of salt. This keeps the movie very lighthearted, which was refreshing!

LATINO FLAVOR!

Today I attended the Latino Flavor event in the Union Ballroom! I had lots of fun and got to try new foods from several different countries. At the buffet, each food had the name of the food and the country that it was from. It was very interesting and I was so happy to have the opportunity to try foods from all over the world. I had a tamale, some queso blanco, and a delicious piece of tres leches cake. There were also some unique drink options, although I did not get to try them.

The event was very loud and exciting; there were performers on a stage throughout. While I was there, there was a performer singing traditional songs, including La Bomba. She was very impressive and had everyone on their feet and clapping!

I also got a really cool t-shirt. It says “Let’s give them something to TACO-bout.” How cute is that?

 

January 2017

BAM! Just like that and January is over! January threw a series of curveballs my way, yet somehow I came out happier and better than ever. As for my New Year’s (Month’s) Resolution? NAILED IT!

Have I gone to bed early for the past consecutive 31 nights? NOPE! Have I consistently tried to go to bed early, wake up with plenty of time to spare, and pay careful attention to the way my body and mind feel? YES! Do I consider this month’s resolution a success?? ABSOLUTELY!

I can’t wait to see what February holds. This month has been challenging, but I think that it was an encouraging and hopeful start to 2017.

I am beyond thankful for everything. The people in my life, the organizations in my life, the mere fact that I get the chance to be ALIVE. That’s incredible.

This is all.