Friday, July 29, 2011

Vienna, Venice, AND Pisa!

First off, I can't even begin to describe how tired I am. Traveling from city to city on train, getting up early, and staying up late can get the best of you, thats for sure. I keep dreaming of my comfortable bed in my apartment back in Chattanooga, with cheaper food and clean clothes... 13 more days of travel!! However, I have slowly fallen in love with Europe, and I am already thinking of a time I can come back some day, maybe even to live for a few months. We will see what is in store for me. :)

Vienna, Austria reminded me a lot of New York, at least where our hotel was. It was super busy and loud, but the culture was insanely diverse! We arrived around dinner time, and I wanted nothing more than A diet coke, a shower, and sleep. So while Veronica and Taylor went out for a bit I had I a nice evening to myself, catching up on things that are awaiting me when I return home. The next day ( Wednesday), we went to the schonbrunn palace. Now honestly I wasn't too impressed with vienna, until we got here. It was BEAUTIFUL. The palace was massive, and you walk to the back through colorful gardens to a huge lot of more gardens, fountains, and super green grass. At the end of the lot there is a huge water fountain, and behind that was a huge hill and another magnificent structure that we weren't able to go visit. There was also a zoo inside, but neither Taylor nor Veronica were kind enough to come with me to visit the baby elephant and the baby giraffe. My little kid inside me was very upset. I will vouch for Veronica, she was not feeling well and wanted to sleep every chance she got. However, they redeemed themselves by going to the maze with me, which took us about twenty minutes. this is the first city we have been that has been hot, so being outside for a long period of time was tiring. We spent the night planning out Italy and eating some good cheap food from a nearby grocery store. We had a long train ride the next day. It was twelve hour travel day to Venice!
We were on a train from 6am to 6pm, but it was the best train ride scenery wise. Italy has the best countryside by far, and it was hard to sleep when there was mountains and castles and sheep and sunflowers right outside our window! When we arrived in Venice, we couldn't stop admiring all the people. We have conclude that Italians are thet most beautiful people in the world. Our hotel was in the middle of everything, so we dropped off our stuff and just started walking. Even though it was very touristy, it was absolutely amazing. My heart didn't stop jumping the entire night, knowing that I would be spending the next 6 days in Italy. We found some traditional Italian food, and wondered around until dusk. Veronica and I then went to the other side of town and wondered in and out of vendor carts and jewelry shops. Venice was beautiful, and I definitely would love to go back!
Today we woke up, had a relaxing morning with coffee and a croissant, and made our way to thet train station. Luckily the train ride was only three hours to Pisa, so once we got here we had plenty of time to look around. We were not greeted very nicely by our hotel clerk, but regardless we went to find none other than the leaning tower of Pisa. It is everything you would expect it to be: a leaning tower. It still is cool to be able to see it, and to be able to take the cheesy photo acting like i am pushing it up. We then ate pizza, ( in Pisa, next to the leaning tower of pisa), and of course got gelato. Lemon is my new favorite! We found a very cool outside bar with live music, sadly though after two hours of no one playing music we decided to call it a night.
We have finally arrived in Rome! It's dinner time so we just finshed eating and we are resting for our big day tomorrow on the moped! Veronica and I are excited at least... Taylor is certain we will wreck. I say have a little faith! We are going to visit all the big sites tomorrow, including the colleseum, the parthanon, ( the real thing instead of the replica in Nashville!), and the travi fountain!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Prague. Graffiti city.

Looking back on our time in Prague, it was not what I expected. I suppose when you hear the city's name, you think of a majestic city that is super wealthy, beautiful and perfect. At least that is what I expected it to be. The first thing we noticed was all the graffiti that covered all the buildings, trains, and buses. Sadly it ruined the beauty that the city was suppose to portray. Might I also add that we had no idea the currency was not the euro, it was a crown? So we see that a pasta dish is 200 crowns, and freaked out. Luckily, that only ends up being about twelve dollars.
The first night we were there it was pretty late, so we aimlessly found our hotel, and used the rest of the night planning our next day. Yesterday we woke up and filled up on the so called breakfast "buffet" at our hotel (cereal, bread, and coffee), and walked toward the big plaza in town. We came across a lot of huge intricate architecture, that all seemed to of been built at least 100 years ago. I loved the fact that almost every restaurant had outside seating, something I think America needs more of. We went on a Prague castle tour, which is the largest coherent castle in the world. It was an amazing view of Prague from the castle, and there was also a cathedral in the middle of the castle that had stain glass windows all down the sides and at each end of the sanctuary. It was beautiful, to say the least. We also got to see the changing of the guards. Veronica and I couldn't help but laugh at the seriousness of it all. How they stand for an hour without cracking a smile, I will never know. After the tour we were starving, so we grabbed a gyro and gelato back in the plaza, which by far has been my favorite meal. ( and cheapest too!) we walked around for a little bit until the evening, and went to see live jazz in a bar/restaurant. I have fallen in love with that genre of music. I wouldn't be too surprised if that is all i listen to when I get home.
Today we traveled to Vienna, Austria. We will be here till thursday. I'm excited to see what this city has to offer! It hasn't been too impresive so far, considering we have just walked down one street. I have started reading " vintage Jesus", and hopefully I will be done before we leave. It has occurred to me how much time we don't give ourselves to just sit and meditate, and i have decided to give myself some time out of every week we are here to be by myself and do my own thing. It's been very nice, being able to collect all my thoughts and get some writing in. The lord is good!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

And now Germany!

We have spent the weekend in a little town right outside Frankfurt, Germany. I believe the name is wiesbaden? Every street name was really long, and they looked like a bunch of letters jumbled together. I have a new lifelong goal: be able to memorize and pronounce five words in German.
Yesterday, we missed our train into Frankfurt, so instead of waiting for the next one we decided to go back to nicole's apartment, watched a whole bunch of episodes of friends, and finally got the chance to do some laundry! However, not being able to understand German washers and dryers made two loads of laundry take four hours. That night we ate Chinese food and walked around the deserted streets until we found everyone in the city at one bar/club. We ended up hanging out for a while, met some very interesting people to say the least! I must say Germans are a lot nicer than we expected.
Today we went to a food market that is in a plaza down the street every Saturday throughout the entire year. The environment was so friendly and the food looked amazing. Of course, we decide on starbucks. After we drove to a city called rudesheim, where a ton of vineyards that seemed to go on for miles surrounded the city. It was gorgeous! There were a ton of outside restaurants and music, as well as friendly German people everywhere! We decided it would be a sin to be mean in this town. I cant wait to put up pictures!
Tomorrow we are off to prague, czech republic. We are going to go into Frankfurt for a tad bit, and then have a super long train ride ahead of us. I'm thinking about investing in a new book...
I would love to thank everyone for reading veronica's blog and my blog. It really is more of an inspiration for us to write! A special thanks to taylor's grandad pepere, who is our number one blog follower!
I love this trip so much already, and I am already thinking about a time I can come back. I have learned so much more about myself, as well as about the world we live in. There is so much beauty in this world that I've been missing out on. I am so blessed to have been able to afford this trip. Thank you, sweet ce ces. :)

Thursday, July 21, 2011


Amsterdam was not anything I expected. I think that we get a total misconception of the city, but in reality it is a beautiful place. Every street has a canal running through or beside it, with boats hooked up all along the sides. There were bikes everywhere! I swear people treat bikes as cars. Anyway, the buildings were beautiful and it just was a great visit! The first day we were there ( Tuesday) we walked from the train station trying to find our hotel, we walked probably around three miles. A couple hours later we realize our hotel is right by the train station... Frustrating yet funny! We saw lots of street performers that played music and did magic tricks and then starting experiencing the night life of the city. Seeing women expose themselves the way they did was very sad, and I wanted more than anything to rescue them from the life that seemed forced upon them. It is also sad that some girls want to do that. Lord I pray that someday they can feel accepted and beautiful without selling themselves to men.
The next day Veronica and I had a girls day while Taylor did his own thing. We walked about ten miles total, our first stop being the van gogh museum, which held 200 of his paintings as well as some Monet who is one of my favorites! From there we grabbed hamburgers at a stand on the street by, then took about one hour to walk through vondel park, which definitely wasn't enough. This side of the city was beautiful, I would love to go back and see it again. That night we met up with taylor and ate dinner with seagulls, which is not an understatement. They definitely weren't afraid to take food out of our hands. Yikes!
Yesterday morning we got on a train to Frankfurt, Germany. It was a very long train ride, but I starting reading the new nicholas sparks book "safe haven", which i also finished. Dialoging the whole thing, Taylor and Veronica don't need to read it. :) we are now staying with one of taylor's friends, nicole. Such a sweetheart!
We spent the day today recuperating, doing laundry and watching friends. We are ready to venture into Germany tomorrow!

I ask for prayer, just for Energy. We are getting warn out, and we are just half way done! We have had a great two weeks, and we are all so excited for the next part of our journey.
Shout out to my young life girls, I miss you all so much! Be home before you know it. :)
Also, to my brother, have safe travels back home! So sad I'll be missing your arrival. Love you and praying for you!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

London and Brussels!

What a great couple of days it has been! I'm sorry it has been so long we have not had reliable Internet service. So much to write!

We got to London early Saturday morning around 1:30am, so instead of getting a hotel room we decided to go to a 24 hour restaurant called bar italia. We ordered pizza and people watched for about four hours. There are very interesting people roaming the soho district on the weekends! We stayed there until about 5am, and from there we walked the dead streets, which honestly we enjoyed a lot more because it was so peaceful! We walked through st. James park and to the buckingham palace. Since we got there so early, none of the red suit, big fuzzy hat guards were out! Sad day indeed. We then slowly walked over to big Ben, which was just magnificently huge! Such beautiful architecture. We then went to a nearby coffee shop to kill time before we could check in to our hotel. Running on little sleep, this was a very long couple of hours. We finally made it to our hotel, and the rest of the day was sleep. We got out to get dinner and chocolate, but made the day a lazy one after a long adventurous night.
The next day we got up early to check out and we got a traditional English breakfast at a pub down the street. We of course then had to get coffee ( which I feel half of my money will be spent on) and then it was off to see Harry Potter! Now, I am not a crazy fan, but that movie was amazing! Especially being surrounded by the people of London, who laugh when kings cross station is mentioned. The walk there was three miles, and from there we walked 5 miles back to buckingham palace to see the guards. We were getting ready to meet our hostess at Piccadilly circus train station. Might I add that makes a total of an 8 mile walk, with our backpacks? LONG day, but such a great ending.
We stayed with our now good friend, Callista, who is a friend of a friend. She was such a blessing to all of us! She took us to an amazing Italian place and then we all shared great conversation over dessert. She lived about twenty minutes away on the train, so we went back to her house and crashed.
Callista was such a strong representation of Christ, and I thank God for bringing us her. She goes to the hillsong church in London, and that morning she came across a homeless person. The lady asked for money, and instead of Callista giving her money, she invited the lady to come to church. After much thought, the lady and another friend went to church. Before the church service was over, the preacher asked if anyone wanted to dedicate their lives to christ. The homeless lady raised her hand. She gave her life to Christ that day! I believe the lord meant for Callista to walk past this women, just so she could hear the greatest love story of all time. God is good. :) Callista, you are wonderful thank you so much!
The next day we spent traveling to brussels. We probably didn't see a good side if the city, but our hotel wasn't great, and there was nothing to do around it. On the up side, our wonderful friend Zoe smith from back home was also in Brussels so we were able to visit with her for awhile! This morning we then got on a train and we are now in Amsterdam. :) more later about this leg of our journey!

I have decided that I love being surrounded by people that live, culturally, in a different way. I have been really thinking about doing missions overseas at some point in my life. I love the idea of that! We will just see where the lord leads me in the future.

I miss my friends and family, but know that I am safe and having a fantastic time as well as learning a lot.

"in me you will have peace."

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Last day in Ireland. Love God's creation.

Wicklow Mountains. True beauty.

I am in awe of how magnificent the countryside of Ireland is. My lord, I could have sat there all day and looked out over the mountains. We spent the entire day touring outside the city, starting with what is called the Sally Gap. We could see for miles, seeing the greenest grass and one small road that curved around the bottom of the mountain. It almost didn't seem real how beautiful it was! We then were able to see the bridge where Hilary Swank and Gerard Butler meet for the first time in P.S. I Love You, and we saw the fields where the battles took place in Braveheart. So cool!
We then went to see the Glenmacnass Waterfall, which wasn't too raging, but it had a gorgeous valley with lots of sheep at the bottom of it! I have never been more excited to see sheep than I was today. From there we went to Glendalough, a settlement with a lot of old stone churches and celtic cross tomb stones. Beautiful pictures to come.
From there we went to a Weaving Mill in a small village in the mountains called Avoca, and it had a tiny cafe that served some of the best beef stew I have ever had! All three of us got it, and devoured it. More importantly, it was cheap!

After a long day of touring we stayed in for the night. Julia made us yet again another delicious meal, ( I will definitely miss having her as a hostess!) and we spent the rest of the night enjoying each other's company. I am going to miss Ireland! I am surprised how I have fallen in love with the country. I see myself someday coming back here and living for a bit, but that would be a dream come true for sure!

Tomorrow, off to London. Now that, my friends, is going to be an adventure. More to come when I get a hold of a computer! Pray for safety as we travel from Ireland to the United Kingdom!

" . . . so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God." Ephesians 3:17-19

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Our journey begins in....Ireland!

It is our second full day in Ireland and we have definitely seen a good portion of Dublin. What a great city! The weather is always in the 60s and it has been very sunny. The Irish culture has captured my heart, I'm in love with the people here. I believe I was made to be here, with freckles, fair skin and the last name Moore, I say I'm I wee bit Irish.

Yesterday we slept in late, ( recovering from jet lag) and then went into downtown Dublin on the bus. We walked the streets for a bit, and we were greeted by an old Irish man that made me dance with him...hilarious! We eventually got to the Guinness Storehouse, where we toured the factory and learned how they made the beer. Now, I not being a fan of beer, very much enjoyed the 360 view of Dublin at the top, as well as a bottled water. From there we saw the Dublin Castle, and walked around the courtyard and garden within the gates. So beautiful! From there we toured a little bit around Trinity college. If I could I would so transfer out here, it is an amazing campus! After a long day we just spent the rest of the night hanging out at the place we are staying, with our new friend Julia Rose! She is a great hostess indeed.

Today we were suppose to go into the countryside, but since we somehow missed the tour we toured the streets some more. We went into the Temple Bar district and ate the ever so famous fish and chips! Very greasy, but very delicious. After that we found a nearby pub and listened to live music, with an Irish violinist and a guitar player. I learned that the sense of humor here in Ireland is a lot different than our humor...regardless, the music is great! We have just spent the day in the sun and looking in free art exhibits and most importantly enjoyed a traditional Irish crepe! yum! Tomorrow we will finally make it to the Country to see the beautiful scenery!

The trip is going so well, I love getting to know new people and exploring a new country! I am so excited that this is just the beginning. I miss all my friends and family in the states, but know that I am having a blast and I am safe! God bless. :)

Monday, July 11, 2011

First Stop...London airport!

It didn't really hit me that we were actually on the trip until we landed here in London. The accents and the language already impresses me! I can't believe we are finally here, and about to start a fantastic journey!

We just got off an eight hour flight, and we have a four hour layover in the London airport. From here we will fly to Dublin, Ireland and take a taxi to our friends house we are staying at for the next 4 nights. No worries, we are all safe and nothing terrible has happened yet.

Pray for energy and comfort as we start this journey, something that will be lifelong memories to cherish! Whoop!