A day spent roaming in Rome

For Valentine’s Day weekend, my friends and I jumped on a train to Rome, the Eternal City (*cue the Lizzie McGuire soundtrack*). As soon as we arrived, we headed across the river and up the hill to the Vatican City — home of Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel and Pieta, St. Peter’s Basilica, Stanze di Raffaello, and […]

Stonehenge challenges tourists’ perceptions

Sometimes study abroad takes you to places you never knew you wanted to go to. For me, that was Stonehenge. As my roommates and I boarded the filled-to-capacity bus for our day trip to Stonehenge, all I could think to myself was, I will be spending the next three hours looking at a conglomerate of […]

Amman, Jordan: The calm before the storm

When you think weather in the Middle East, you think hot, dry and eternally sunny, right? Wrong. This week, Amman has been very cold — especially by Los Angeles standards — a chilly 45 degrees most days, and with winds up to 30 miles per hour, making doing absolutely anything outside extremely unpleasant. Worse yet, this […]

In Photos: Selfie sticks around the globe

In certain places nowadays, putting down your phone to simply take in the scenery is a must. Earlier this month, several museums, including the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn, MoMa in New York and the Getty Center in Los Angeles, have banned the use of selfie sticks — occasionally referred to as “the wand of narcissism.” Around the globe, […]

The bittersweetness of study-abroad goodbyes

Around two weeks ago, the international students at Waseda University finished their last round of finals and clawed their way out of a fast-collapsing pit of deadlines, study-guides, and quiet panic. The end of the semester meant freedom for all of us, but for some of us — single-semester exchange students — it also meant […]

A trip to Cambridge worth all the while

Since I seem to spend a relatively little amount of my time in London actually attending my university (classes are only two hours a week each), I decided to spend my Friday at another famous university — Cambridge. Probably partially because England is such a small country, there are a ton of great day trips […]

Tokyo: A venture into deep culture

Along with program planned trips and “survival Japanese” lessons, my time in Tokyo so far has been divided between getting to know the Keio University students joining us for the Keio Future Leaders Program (KFLP) and learning about how to immerse oneself in deep culture. Without much consideration, “deep culture” can seem like a wishy-washy, […]

Enjoying cenci in Venice for Carnevale

As I hopped on a bus for my next day trip, I ventured out of Florence in hopes of checking another experience off of my bucket list — Venice for Carnevale. Each year, the celebration lasts about 10 days, starting in late January and continuing until the day before Ash Wednesday. Known for its intricate […]

The perks of free museums

In London, the cost of being cultured is relatively cheap. In my three weeks studying in the heart of the British Empire, I’ve explored a wide range of the free museums, churches and art galleries. Among the museums I’ve visited are the Museum of London, the British Museum and the National Gallery. By visiting these […]

A Venetian weekend: Island hopping and masquerades

“Don’t go to sleep. Just stay up the entire weekend. You can sleep when you get back,” is what Sam — every SACI (Studio Art Centers International) student’s helpful guide to surviving in Florence — told me when I bid him adieu and headed off to the station to catch a train to Venice, Italy. […]