Hope-full Romantic goes to Italy

Hope-full Romantic goes to Italy
Kelly Killpack
           
I’ve always called myself a hopeless romantic, but after my Shakespeare based Winter Term trip to Italy, with stops in Venice, Verona, and Rome, I changed my mind. Not only did I fall in love with the cities, the Shakespeare stories, and our fabulous group, but I also learned that I love ‘Love’, and my trip advisors fixed my perspective on romance. This came with some amazing experiences perfect for a newly hope-full romantic like myself. Her Campus readers, may you feel inspired just like me during this season of cheesy love songs and cliché valentines.
 
I couldn’t get enough of Italy—it was clear to our group by my constant swooning, infatuation with all the tourist traps, and search for my true Italian love (who I swear I found). It’s no surprise that I could not wait to visit the Trevi Fountain while in Rome. It’s perceived to be so magical and full of hope for tourists and romantics alike.
 

Our group traveled to dinner together and we passed the Trevi ever so casually. I wanted to take in every detail, though our group already had their first viewing without me and were not nearly as amused. This was something that never ceased to amaze me about sight seeing; we’d take the beautiful scenes we’d see in Italy for granted because we’d stumble upon them so much. I had to constantly remind myself this is far from the everyday and to enjoy every twist and turn down the streets and stunning views of historic cities.
           
We had full days of touring in Rome, one of them was centered around all the big sights. Although we had already seen most of the sights scheduled for the day at this point, I knew it would be completely different with our awe-inspiring tour guide’s added two cents (or Euros, to be more appropriate). I literally ran to the Trevi Fountain as soon as I heard the water gushing. It wasn’t nearly as crowded as I expected for what’s considered a tourist trap.
 
Before we were sent off to model for photos in front of the fountain, our tour guide gave us the coin toss protocol: three coins, one wish for each. The coin is held in your right hand and tossed over your left shoulder with your eyes closed. The first wish is for Rome, and I can assure you, I strongly wish to return! The second is for any kind of love, and her extension of that even included ending love, which I found humorous. Rome is certainly a city full of love, and I felt surrounded by it on the trip and by my supportive friends and family—this wish was perfect for me. The final wish was secret, and I will forever keep it to myself. However, I did give it serious thought; after all, a wish in the Trevi is sure to come true, and I could not waste it!
 
I found this experience so memorable because I was very reflective about how blessed I was to be on this trip and for all the opportunities that I’ve been given since coming to DePauw. That moment felt so right, I truly did not want to be anywhere else—besides the ‘Castle, naturally. Despite my perfectly crafted wishes, it was hard to wish for even more because being in a beautiful, perfect city and traveling with such amazing people seemed insurmountable. These fifteen minutes spent at the Trevi Fountain exceeded all my anticipation for my Winter Term experience. Have I convinced you to visit yet?
 
I don’t think we have to use the Trevi though to make big wishes. Sure it’s cheesy, but DePauw is equally magical—how else can you explain running into the guys you tried to not see after that night out, or 60 degree weather in February?
 
As a hope-full romantic, I learned to live in the moment and love everything and anything in Italy. We collegiettes should be living in the moment here at DePauw, too. I am aware of my love affair with this school, and Italy was a fresh reminder of that. I was only there for two weeks and soaked up all the magic I could; lucky for us, we have four years here! So, let’s take advantage of it.
 
Tell your friends how much you mean to them, sigh at the beautiful sight of East College at night when you walk back from Roy O. Hey, you could even pretend that fountain outside East College is the Trevi and make some wishes. This is the time to live for the moment, even those you want to forget.

I’ll admit, I returned on our final night in Rome to make another three wishes, just to be sure the Trevi heard my desires loud and clear. It was the absolute perfect way to end the day, and the trip in general. You can never be sure enough that you’re love is heard all around!
 
Express your love, you newly hope-ful romantics, and it is bound to return to you!