Spring Break Day 1

So we left Austin about 24 hours ago and set out on a flight to New York. My seat was not with Aarti and Kayla, I was about 10 rows behind them and ended up sitting next to two boys from London. Tom and Danny. Tom goes to Monmouth on a tennis scholarship and Danny is here for 10 days visiting him. They were really cool. We had a good time talking the whole flight. It was supposed to be 3 and a half hours, but we had to circle the airport for 30 minutes because of the amount of traffic coming in. As we landed I pointed out the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building among other things to them. They were a lot of fun to talk to. We talked about the differences between the US and England and the differences in the way we speak and our lives, school, what I should do while in London…all sorts of things. It was cool. The landing was horrible. The captain landed the left side of the plane before the right and then we fish tailed on the runway some. Not calming for the nerves.

From New York, we flew to London. I bought my plane tickets after Aarti and Kayla, so I was sitting in front of them since a seat next to them was not available when I bought mine. When we got on the woman sitting by the girls was sitting across the aisle from her husband and didn’t want to switch with me and move away from him, which I understand. She said, however, if I could get the woman on the other end of the row I was in (our row was in the middle of the plane) to switch with me she would sit there and I could take her seat. That way I would be by my friends and she could still be by her husband. The woman on the other end of my row though said she was “settled” and comfortable and didn’t want to move. As soon as we finished that conversation she got up. What the heck?!?

The other woman sitting in my row was just rude. During the flight she asked me to get up to let her out to go to the bathroom. No problem, but then when she came back and I wanted to sit back down she had her stuff in my seat and didn’t move it until I said something…then she asked…oh, that’s not yours? No bitch. I slept most of the flight and at one point I woke up and looked over at her…it was scary looking. She was turned toward me, sleeping with her overbite wide open right in my face. So not pretty. Then when the plane had landed while everyone was standing up waiting to get off and I couldn’t go anywhere she asked to get by me. I moved out of the row so she could and all she did was reach up, get her luggage and stay in my way. I finally asked her if I could get back in my row. It’s not like we were going to be moving any time soon. She was rude.

Apparently Kayla and Aarti didn’t get any sleep because the 3 year old sitting behind Kayla was kicking her seat the whole way, while wailing and screaming. When she wasn’t kicking she was wrestling with the tray on the back of Kayla’s seat. Sucks for them.

We got off the plane and had to go through customs where there were tons of people, but the line moved pretty quickly. The woman asked me how long I was staying in England and I told her I was going to get on another flight to Milan shortly. She asked what I was doing there and I told her shopping. She said, “oh, right.” and stamped my passport. Apparently they asked Kayla a bunch of questions and Aarti got the 3rd degree…where are you going? Why are you here? How long are you here? Who are you traveling with? Where are they? Why do you travel so much? Etc. It’s cause she’s brown and people thinks she looks like a terrorist.

After we finished at customs we were walking to easyJet to check in when I saw a woman grab the guy she was with around the throat…I thought she’s accidentally tripped over his foot and was just trying not to fall, then it looked like she was going to fall and take him down with him.. That’s when I figured out they were full on fighting. She might have tripped, but he’d done it on purpose, then to get back at him she grabbed him from behind around the neck and his back with the other hand; He grabbed her by the hair and threw her to the ground and I kept walking, trying not to watch. How can people be like that??? Crazy. Well, we got to easyJet and our flight didn’t open for boarding for another hour so we went up to this little café to hang out. It’s crazy, in London you’re apparently allowed to smoke everywhere, which I am so completely not used to. They have little smoking areas that are in no way separated (except for the half walls around them) from the rest of the building. You can smoke in restaurants, everywhere. Once we could check in we did and then we went and sat in big area where all the food and duty-free shops are because we hadn’t been assigned a gate yet. This is where we got food and discovered that my feet are grossly swollen. Can’t wait to lay down. At the time we were supposed to board a gate was assigned to our flight and away we went.

The 3 of us got to sit together because you chose your own seats on easyJet, just like Southwest. We all put our tray tables down and passed out on them. I’m sure it was funny to see. We were (and still are) all exhausted though. Just before we got to Milan-Linate we woke up to see the beautiful snow capped mountains we were flying over. It was all you could see and so beautiful. At Linate we had to go through customs again and then get our bags. This is where we met Carlo, Aarti’s boyfriend, who looked so excited to see her. They’re very cute and haven’t stopped touching since he picked us up. I can’t imagine having a long distance relationship with someone who lives literally halfway around the world. From Linate we caught the bus to Central Station which is very similar to Grand Central in New York, just not as big. It surprised me to see on the bus ride that Milan has a large graffiti problem. It’s everywhere and something I didn’t expect at all. There is also litter all over the city. It’s sad, if only they’d make an effort to clean it up it would be so beautiful.

We caught the train about an hour after we arrived, which is where we are now. We’re all a little delirious. I slept some more, apparently with my eyes open. It’s something I do when I’m really tired and have done since I was an infant. Apparently they messed with me for 10 minutes or so and figured out I was asleep. From my nap I woke up to see the mountains and eat a sandwich (Carlo brought one for each of us.) A little bit ago I asked him, you said we have an hour and a half left, right? to which he replied, “a piece of gum?” Delirious. We will be in Rome in about 45 minutes where we are going straight to the hotel, the shower and then bed. Tomorrow we start at 9 and I can’t wait to explore Rome!!

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