Gnocchi, Rome, and Exhaustion

Written by Kayla June 1, 2015

It is hard to believe that my CIMBA experience is already half way over. The past two weeks have been a whirlwind of travel, classes, and making memories with friends new and old. This past week was a hectic week for classes; I had two exams but managed to squeeze in some of the programs organized trips on Tuesday. During the day on Tuesday it was sunny and warm, but as soon as we began the hour-long bus ride up to the top of Mount Grappa it started to rain and hail. Despite the bad weather we enjoyed the views from the top of the mountain (out of the café window).

Later that evening, I was lucky enough to participate in a trip to Fietta to learn how to make gnocchi. This was probably one of my favorite experiences so far. We drove up into the mountains to a tiny restaurant where the owner took us back into the kitchen and with the help of a translator taught us how to make two different types of gnocchi. I enjoyed how hands on this was, she had us rolling and chopping the gnocchi into individual noodles. Despite the language barrier she still managed to keep us all laughing. After the lesson we were all able to enjoy the delicious gnocchi for ourselves! There were several other trips offered during the rest of the week, however, I decided to skip them so I could prepare for my two upcoming exams.

After exams were done it was time for the much-awaited trip to Rome! There is a man that works on campus named Alberto that is very popular among CIMBA students. He has been helping us set up numerous buses to different cities every weekend which saves us students a lot of time and money. This weekend we were lucky enough to take one of the buses he organized to Rome. The history in this city is unbelievable – it truly leaves you breathless. We saw all of the typical tourist sites while we were there but we were particularly in awe with the Sistine Chapel and the Colosseum. At the Sistine Chapel, we stood in silence for a very long time admiring the elaborate paintings that covered the ceiling and walls, it was hard to imagine all of this being painted by hand. The Colosseum was my favorite part of Rome; it is a very humbling experience to stand inside something that has been around for that long. While at the Colosseum our travel group split into two, one half took a tour and the other half opted not to. I would strongly recommend taking the tour since you learn so much more about how it was built, who built it, and what it was used for (its uses changed over time).

Naturally, while in Rome we also took the time to experience the cuisine the area has to offer. We tried the specialties of the area: pasta Carbonara and Amatriciana both of which are very delicious. From the history to the food Rome was an incredible experience. After the long busy weekend I am happy to be back on the CIMBA campus to get some much needed rest before classes tomorrow. This past week was incredible, but I am even more excited for the next. We have several trips planned through CIMBA during the week and I am looking forward to the weekend that we have planned in Barcelona.

Ciao until next week!