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My Time in the “Eternal City”

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at St. John's chapter.

In 2018, I spent most of my days as a 15-year-old daydreaming about the future and what I envisioned for my adult self. That year, I told myself that my life’s purpose was to see the world, and I made a promise to 15-year-old Amaiya to do just that.

Now, I have begun fulfilling the promise I made to that hopeful 15-year-old. I am currently studying abroad for a semester in Rome, Italy, and I have never felt more alive. 

When preparing to travel abroad last semester, I never imagined my days looking like they currently do. Here, I spend my weekends basking in the Roman sun, sipping on cappuccinos, and discovering new sites to sit and relax near. When I’m bored, I go on a twenty-minute walk to the Vatican to make phone calls to my family, people-watch or discover new details in the ancient architecture that surrounds me. It’s insane to me that I have the privilege of having such alluring sites and experiences to indulge in every day, and I am beyond grateful. 

While I have been to a handful of countries so far, I’ve grown to appreciate the weekends when I stay on the Roman campus. This past weekend, I was on one of my aimless walks and found myself thinking deeply about the benefits of living in the “eternal city.” I love having the liberty of walking around this place that has been here for centuries, and I can feel the rich history in the atmosphere.

I’ve never been in a city or country where I’ve felt so welcomed as a foreigner. From the barista who goes out of his way to help me practice my Italian, to the shop owner who greets me with “ciao bella” every time I step into their business, Italians never fail to make you feel so wanted in their country.

In the past three months that I’ve spent in this beautiful city, I’ve already decided that I want to come back and possibly live here. I have become so enthralled with the deep history and culture this nation has and I am dreading my return to the US. Studying abroad has already provided me with such vast knowledge about other cultures, and I’ve already learned so much about myself and what I want for my future. 

At the beginning of the spring semester, I took a twenty-minute stroll to the Trevi Fountain to make my wishes. There’s a legend here that states you can toss three coins into the fountain, and those three coins correlate to three specific wishes. Out of the three, the first wish is the most paramount. The toss of the first coin signifies your eventual return to Rome, and I certainly hope that wish comes true.

Amaiya Sancho

St. John's '25

Hi! My name is Amaiya Sancho and I'm from Columbia, Maryland. I am the President of Her Campus St. John’s, majoring in Communications with minors in Social Justice Theory and Italian. I'm so happy to have been a part of Her Campus at St. John's for the past three years!