Rotary Conference as an Inbound number 2!!!
First, let me say, I'm so tired right now. Like, super tired. So if this makes less sense then usual, it's totally not (completely) my fault.
Ernesto and I took the train from Piestany to Bratislava. It's an hour by train. We met up with all the other exchanges at the train station. Everyone was yelling, hugging, being the crazys that we are when we all get together. We took our luggage to a van that Rotary had for us, and then we walked (through the rain) to the Government Office. We got a tour of that, which was pretty cool. Lots of pictures. We probably take 3 times as long as other tours, just because we get so easily distracted by taking pictures. So we did that.
Then we walked to the Old City part of Bratislava. We got a tour of that too. It is so pretty! And really interesting, all the history that is there. It's so different for me, just hearing about all these buildings that are hundreds of years old. Well, obviously I've heard of old buildings like that before, but I haven't seen any in person before this year. So it was pretty sweet.
After that we all went to the Christmas Market. Which is like the best invention ever. Stalls set up in the middle of a square, with ten bazillion things to buy for Christmas! (Lots of really good food, too.) We sort of ate dinner there. (We were supposed to, but I don't remember what I had, which means it was probably junk food. Or as close to junk food as it gets here.) We went shopping at some mall then. I don't remember where. (I really pay attention to the names of places that I go.) Since I'm broke, I only bought a few shirts, but it was still fun.
Back at the hotel, (once we got there, I mean.) we got our room assignments. The rooms had 7 people in them, but they were split up into like 3, 3, and 1. In my 3, I had a girl from Mexico, and another American. Of the other 4, 3 were American, and 1 was Mexican. So our room had a bit of Spanish going on. We had our Secret Santa thing then. Everyone seemed pretty happy with the gifts. I got a scarf/pennant thingy that says "Slovakia" in really big letters on it. Then we all were talking and hanging out until curfew, at which point we just went to our rooms and continued talking. My room was awake until 1:30.
I woke up at 6:30. So, wayyyyyy too early. Breakfast was at 7, but all we had was tea and bread with butter or jam or whatnot on it. Then we grabbed our coats, and waited for the bus. And waited. And waited. The bus finally got there, but we had a bus with no heat. It wasn't a huge deal, since there were like 40 of us, and those South Americans are crazy! They were singing, and dancing, and just being noisy in general, but it did warm us up. So it was nice and toasty warm there. We went to Vienna, where we saw a palace. No, I don't know the name of it. But there was another Christmas Market there. So we shopped some more. It was horrible weather though, like 33 degrees and raining. Ugh. (1 degree Celsius)
After that, we went to the like center of Vienna. We had the option to go on a tour or to just shop. Only 10 of us out of 31 went on the tour. It was really interesting, hearing about all the history that was there. Then we went shopping. My group's first stop...STARBUCKS!!! Yea, I know. But we have been deprived of Starbucks for 3 months, and we are teenage girls. Do the math.
Then we went window shopping, for the most part. But it was really fun. Until Jenn and I went to find a restroom, and couldn't find our group. We met up with Ernesto and Crystal later, and the first thing I said to them was "We lost Teague!!!" They laughed for quite awhile over that one. We found them later then.
When most of us were on the bus, we had a bit of an adventure...First, 2 of the Mexicans were missing. Then Viktor (Brasil) fainted outside. It was really scary because we didn't know what was going on. In the end, the Mexicans were only about 5 minutes late. Viktor had to go to the hospital in Vienna, and as of this morning, he was doing fine. We will get an email update once they (Rotary) have more information.
We went back to Bratislava, to the mall. It was more shopping, so obviously it was fun. I didn't lose anyone else then(:
Back at the hotel, more talking. I was with Jenn in the guys room, where we were basically having a back massage party. Until Jenn found out I was ticklish, and tried to throw me on the bed to tickle me more, but she ended up slamming my head into the wall. Ouch. (I'm fine, by the way.) A lot more people came into the room then, it was super crowded. Jenn, Teague, and I went to Jenn's room to talk for a bit. Then Teague went back to the guy's room, and Jenn and I went to the lobby for the wi-fi. We stayed there until curfew, at which point we all went back to our rooms. My roomies and I stayed up talking for a really long time. At like 2am, we heard this pounding coming from the floor. We were freaked out for like 5 minutes, until I remembered that Jenn's room was right below ours...We ended up all of us out on our balcony talking to them (Jenn and her roomies) for a few mins, but it was really cold. I think we stayed up until about 3...
This morning, we had our tea and bread again. Then our Slovak test...it was really hard. We had to listen to them read questions, and they talked super fast. Then there was like an entire page for us to read in Slovak, and answer questions. The whole thing took almost 2 hours. After, we packed and got ready to leave. We rode the bus to the train station. Most of us still had to buy tickets, which was crazy. Because once I had my ticket, I had exactly 5 minutes to make the train. We ended up running and just barely making it. The train was so crowded that we had to stand in the hall for the entire ride. Or at least I did, since Ernesto and I were the first ones of us exchanges to get home. It was only an hour, so not too horrible. Train got here, I walked home...After lunch here, I slept for like 1.5 hrs. So I'm still really tired. But this weekend was amazing(: