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VACATION - Paris! Rome!

My friend Abby is heading off on what is bound to be a fabulous trip to Italy soon, and I started to reminisce with her about my trip to Italy last September.  That whole trip was bananas, and every time I turned around, something crazier was happening.  It was all very hilarious, if confusing and/or uncomfortable at the time.

I should probably mention that the week before I left was hellish, since I got into a car accident, and therefore didn't have access to my car as I tried to get all my last-minute stuff under control (and deal with the insurance people which turned into this whole long extremely ridiculous mess), AND I was putting in 12 hour days at work to prep for the almost two weeks I'd be gone, and so by the time we finally left for the airport (at 3:00 am by the way), I felt like I hadn't slept in years, even if technically I'd slept for four hours the two nights previous, if not at all that night.  Then began the world's longest trip to Paris from Los Angeles by way of Houston and London, which necessitated an airport change in London, so we took a bus, enjoyed some delays, and finally arrived in Paris 26 hours later.  I was beyond delirious.  I didn't sleep at all, except for maybe ten minute catnaps while sitting on the floor of the last airport waiting for them to announce what gate they were going to move us to, but I was so terrified I was going to miss the announcement that it was hardly restful.  I have never been so tired in my life.  So what did we do bright and early the next morning?  We went to Disneyland Paris!  Obviously.  Where I got soaking wet in a couple of freak thunderstorms.

We decided to close out the evening with some slightly more high-brow entertainment, so we bought tickets to see one of the Spectacles at Versailles.  It's this crazy fireworks and water show that they put on at the Neptune fountain, and each year there's a different story.  They decided to tell the story of Cyrano de Bergerac while we were there, and you should all be impressed to note that while everything was in French, my six years of Spanish and two weeks of French class paid off because I was able to translate about 90% of our program fairly easily.  Note, however, that this is an outdoor show, at night, and it was BEYOND freezing.  The locals knew this, and wore heavy jackets and brought lots of blankets.  We did not.

After a little while, though, the show became so mind-boggling, that I could no longer focus on my sheer physical misery.  Apparently, Cyrano decided to help make the children of the moon, or something (look, it was in French, okay?  Also, it was a French play.  I wasn't expecting it to make tons of sense), but there are some things that are just universally understood when told through charades, and one of those things is the act of making babies.  First, the light up lady, uh, encouraged Cyrano's interest to grow, shall we say, and then Cyrano returned the favor, and then they got super friendly from behind, and then their friends joined in, and now I know what a light-up seven-way looks like!  Thanks, France.  The children sitting behind us found this all to be the most hysterical thing EVER, and I could not blame them because  I couldn't stop laughing either.  Trust me, the picture here doesn't do the spectacle justice (there really are people inside those light up costumes, and they're suspended by wires over a ginormous fountain.).

By the time we reached Rome, though, I had developed a full-blown head cold.  Very mysterious as to why, I'm sure.  So I did the sensible thing, walked into a farmacia, and bought some medication from a nice pharmacist who spoke not a word of English, as I mimed all my symptoms due to my supreme lack of Italian.  This makes for hilarious times for everyone, including the other visitors in the farmacia.  But whatever on earth it was that I was taking, it did make me feel moderately better, if extremely photosensitive (I was neon red for the rest of the trip), so we decided to call it an early night by visiting the restaurant across from our hotel and having some pizza.  By the way, I'm fairly certain that every restaurant in Rome is some sort of pizzeria, even the fancy ones.  That's the sort of thinking I can get behind.  However, once we reached the restaurant, we learned that our favorite sausage potato pizza wasn't an option due to lack of potatoes.  We mimed our sadness at this.  Our waiter (who is now one of my facebook friends as I am clearly some sort of international ambassadorial genius, obviously) offered to make it up to us by serving a sausage and french fry pizza.  You guys?  FRENCH FRY PIZZA.  I can pretty much die happy for having experienced this awesome thing.  We had French fry pizza for three out of the next five meals in Rome, as you do.


This is me awaiting French fry pizza. Also? Advertising Coke. 
Also? Crazy high on mysterious Italian cold meds. Please note my fuzzy facebook friend.

And as we were leaving Rome and a nun body-checked me at the train station (because of her terror at possibly being caught in the malfunctioning people-mover--I'm assuming she had adrenaline-enhanced strength or she missed her calling as a linebacker because I went flying) and my first instinct was to protect the French fry pizza (I was successful, no worries--and it was for the road, okay?  No judging.), I realized that traveling is possibly an even more character-driven experience than writing.  Which must be why I enjoy it so much.

What's the most hilarious thing that's happened to you guys while traveling lately?

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9 Comments


one word: denver
two words: rom con

one more word: sam

I leave you with this.


LOL! That sounds positively, miserably, totally exhilarating. What a grand adventure!

And now I want some French fry pizza. Mmmm.


this is amazing! and the french light up show story is even more hysterical than i imagined, and trust me, i was imagining some funny shenanigans.

i was in greece when i had a head cold and so i too had to mime my symptoms. and then i had the hotel conceriege read the medical insert to make sure i wouldn't die. i didn't. and man alive, those foreign cold meds are spectacular. i should have brought some home with me.

i hope they serve french fry pizza in verona.

i'm sure to have more stories to come. i leave tomorrow. eek! yay!


Liz: I said hilarious, not creepy! I'm just going to play a little Jason Mraz for you, okay? Feel free to just dance it out.

Linda: Know what goes really well with French fry pizza? Gelato! I chose tiramisu gelato, but I'm sure there's some sort of pumpkin prune option for you.

Abby: Here's a youtube video that gives you a better idea of what the people looked like:
http://il.youtube.com/watch?v=HbHImljEMqc

I'm not sure the full glory of their commedia dell arte masks are evident in the picture. But I AM pretty certain you can talk someone in Verona into making you some French fry pizza (totally worth it). And yeah, maybe stock up on the spectacular foreign cold meds because they are so much more effective than our domestic ones, for reasons I'm unclear about, since I wasn't able to translate the insert. :) Have SO MUCH FUN! We'll miss you!


I love this. This was terribly entertaining.

My craziest travel story involved many madcap adventures in Scotland. Hmm, I may have to blog about it!


Sierra: Haha, do it! I should do it too. Scotland is the only time I ever got into a van with a random South African dude and ended up sitting behind the wheel of what may have been a getaway vehicle. I may start a travel adventure series...


I bet you would have brought some French Fry Pizza home in your suitcase if they would have let you! LOL Ah, to travel. Won't be doing that anytime soon. So I'll have to live vicariously though my young, childless friends. ;)


So glad you finally posted about it and we have a written account of what did happen!


Elizabeth: Anytime you need me to go to Italy and eat French fry pizza for you, please don't hesitate to let me know. For serious. :)

Kelly: All instances of classy light up porn in Paris should be preserved for posterity. Obviously.

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