Wednesday, July 31, 2013


Our last stop in Italy is Rome! We arrived late on Saturday night, not really leaving much time to do anything besides grab a bite to eat before sinking into our beds. The next day, we headed to church at a branch not too far from our hotel. Here's a bit of a side story: when we were in London, it was fast and testimony meeting. We walked in late so we had to sit in the back and right as the last testimony was given over the pulpit, the bishop rose and introduced a special guest that had come to visit. Quinton L Cook stood and bore his testimony to the congregation because he was visiting the ward while clelebrating his 50th wedding anniversary in London with his wife. Pretty cool right? After that meeting in London, it became a running joke to see who else would be following us around and come to church with us in all the different cities we were visiting. Right as I walked into church on Sunday in Rome I made a joke saying, "hmm I wonder who is coming to visit us today!" Little did i know that the first Counseler in the primary presidency, Sister Jean A. Stevens as well as the presiding bishop of the church, Gary A. Stevenson. It was really cool to hear them both speak (with their Italian translators at their side).
After church we wanted to start our Rome experience right by a trip to the Trevi Fountain

Me tossing my coin in the fountain, ensuring my return to Rome.

The group!

I'm not sure if you can tell, but that cute little couple in the background just got engaged. They were so cute! After he proposed, everyone started clapping and cheering.

Later Sunday night, we all decided we were pretty sick of eating out so much so our apartment decided to host everyone for dinner that night. We divided up the cooking responsibilities and somehow fit 20 people into our tiny apartment. 
We turned a couple of cabinets on their sides and everyone sat on our mattresses while we ate. Haha

I was pretty impressed with us ha

Monday we decided to go to the Colosseum. One of the must see monuments in Rome.

Our cute old man tour guide who took us around the Colosseum.

 Roman soldiers outside who totally took advantage of some young American tourist by charging us 10 euro for this dumb picture. I figure since it cost us so much I might as well post it. (And no I'm still not bitter about it ha)

We also toured the imperial palace ruins which required quite a bit of imagination but were pretty cool to see.

Imperial Palace 

 We then took a trip to the Spanish steps and people watched for a few is quite entertaining and its also listed in Trip Advisors top #10 thing to do in Rome. (People watch on the Spanish steps) 

I would like to entitle this one struggles on the Spanish steps. Haha Skelsje, Heather, Me and Hilary

On Tuesday we had briefings all day. Our first briefing was with a religious and immigrant minorities leader in Italy who works to ease the transition of immigrants who come to Italy. Our next briefing, one of my favorites of the trip, was with a reporter from Bloomberg. I was absolutely enthralled with everything they are working on at Bloomberg- it was journalist heaven in their office.

The rest of our time in Rome was spent eating lots of pizza and gelato, shopping, visiting museums, and unfortunately doing homework. Yes I know it's hard to believe that I'm actually doing school work, but I am! Here are some of the highlights of the rest of Rome!

This is my favorite pizza place in all of Rome. It's called the Pizzarium and its amazing. I literally went 3 times in our 5 day visit to Rome- yes it's that good. 

Playing in the rain outside of Borghese Gardens

Best gelato!!

Vatican City

Inside St. Peter's Cathedral

Getting busted for dress code walking into the Vatican.... They're even worse than BYU!

From the top of St Peters

Vatican City from the top!

We also took a guided tour of the Vatican City museum which was absolutely breathtaking. By far one of the best museums I've been in. We got to see some of the best works of Michelangelo included the Sistine Chapel. Overall, the city inside of the city was pretty awesome.

Now we're off to Vienna, Austria!

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