Tag Archives: Adventure

Surprise Megventure!

Surprising friends and family is one of my favorite things to do, especially while I’ve been in college. Thanks to the generous support of my Dad, I’ve been able to surprise my mom on multiple occasions and now my sister! Here’s the latest “Megventure” update from Chattanooga, Tennessee!

This season has been physically and emotionally draining. After sitting out for nearly a month with my back, and going through the painfully slow process of getting cleared, it was established that I probably wouldn’t be traveling with the team to Chicago and St. Louis over Halloween weekend. This happened to be the same weekend my sister was also set to be in Chattanooga, TN for her first college race. After learning I wasn’t traveling on the 29th, I jokingly texted my Dad asking if I could surprise my sister in Tennessee with a quick stop in Nashville on Halloween to meet up with Dave and his friend CJ. My joke soon became a reality, when just hours later my flights, Megabus (oh my) and hotels were booked.

Fast forward: It’s now Friday morning (Halloween) and I find myself trekking it to JFK via the subway. Truth be told, I’ve never taken the subway to the airport, just the LIRR – THEY ARE VERY DIFFERENT EXPERIENCES.  After switching trains four times and finding a fellow Greenwich Villager like myself, I finally arrived at JFK and made my way to the Admiral’s Club (my airport safe haven).  This is when the surprise truly began to take form – I had talked with Twist and explained that I was going to have a boring weekend and was considering going to Boston (lest I slip up and accidentally post a traveling pic to social media). After some delays, I finally got on my flight to Nashville via Dulles and then sprinted through the airport to catch my next flight. Less than 10 minutes later, I was upgraded to First Class (granted it wasn’t that different on the tiny plane),  and well on my way to the south.

Upon arriving in Nashville, I was immediately greeted by a gentleman on my flight asking if he wanted to split a cab downtown. HELLO SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY?!  I quickly abandoned my New York attitude and said, “Why not?” 20 short minutes later, I was in downtown Nashville and met up with the boys. I immediately fell in love with the city – the people were so sweet, the food was to die for, and the music… don’t even get me started. The three of us ventured out to get some food at Peg Leg Porker (definitely recommend it) then out that night to numerous bars to celebrate Halloween, country-style!

Hours later, I was packing up and headed on my first Megabus Adventure. I paid $14 dollars for my seat on the double-decker packed bus to Chattanooga. I ended up sitting next to a mother and we exchanged stories about our lives – she was on a 15 hour bus ride from Indianapolis to Atlanta (WOAH!). Upon arriving in Chattanooga a few hours later, I sprinted towards “civilization”, also known as Starbucks to get some caffeine and figure out how to get across town. Unlike New York or Nashville, Über does not exist in this quaint town.  After ordering, I asked the barista his recommendation on getting across town. His response, “Try making a friend, I’m sure they won’t mind.” I wish I could have seen my face in that moment because before I could utter another word, he added, “You’re not from around here are you?” Laughing off what I thought was a joke, I began looking up taxi services to bring me to the hotel a few miles down the road. Thirty minutes later, a woman in an old, cluttered white mini van pulls up and I hop in. I kept saying to myself, “Toto, I don’t think we’re in New York anymore.”

After checking into my hotel, I began my reconnaissance of my sister’s hotel across the street. I sat in the lobby for an hour waiting for her team to come back to the hotel from the race course, but began to get hungry so I headed back to my room. I found out that a website similar to Delivery.com exists in Chattanooga, but there’s only about 5 different restaurants with the same cuisine (BBQ) – lucky for me, I was in the mood for some southern cooking.  Once I finished eating, I trekked back to my sister’s hotel and ran into some of her novice teammates who led me into their workout room where Twist would soon be heading.  A few minutes later, Twist was in my arms crying; a surge of emotions no doubt overwhelming the two of us. I knew she had team obligations and workouts before we could hang again, but I was just so happy I was able to see her for a few minutes! It had been almost three months since I had seen her last – and so much had changed for the two of us since then.

Unfortunately, my sister’s races were canceled on Saturday because of strong winds, so she told me to go ahead and move my flight up a day because there was literally NOTHING for me to do in Chattanooga except watch her race.  No more than fifteen minutes after I changed my flights, her races were re-scheduled to Sunday. I was really bummed I missed her race, but that’ll be something I can do next time I surprise her!

Sunday morning, I headed back out to the airport. I gave myself an hour and a half (because of my history with flights) even though the airport was a whopping 7 minutes away. I could have waited 20 minutes before boarding because that’s how long it took to get from my hotel room to the gate. Chattanooga has a single terminal, 5 gate airport (sans Starbucks) with a grand total of maybe 10 employees working at any given time. Unfortunately, my flight was delayed on the ground and I missed my connection in Chicago, pushing back my New York arrival time a few hours. I got back to my apartment late Sunday night with a big smile on my face, knowing that I had once again successfully surprised my family!

It was definitely another Megventure for the books and I am so incredibly blessed I had the opportunity to surprise Twist, hang with Dave, and see Nashville!

Auf Wiedersehen!

As some of you may or may not know, my younger sister, Twist, just spent the past five days exploring the city (and Syracuse) and is now off on her first foreign adventure to Germany. I could not be happier/nervous/jealous, but more importantly I am extremely excited for her to catch the travel bug!  After helping her prep and pack for this trip, I was inspired to write a blog on my top ten travel tips because international travel is anything but stress-free.

  1. Check in 24 hours before hand! While in Europe, some (budget) airlines required us to print out boarding passes before hand, but more often than not I opt to go for the eTicket to save time and the environment. This also enables you to change your seat before getting to the airport and check for upgrades. Who doesn’t love a free upgrade? I also recommend purchasing your airline’s app (usually free) on your iPhone and signing up for gate changes and updates. After I get to the airport all I have to do is show my boarding pass on my phone and everything’s a go. If your gate changes or there are delays, updates are sent directly to your phone – super convenient, right?
  2. Set aside enough time to get to the airport and make sure to set enough alarms if you have an early flight. This is an important  tip and one lesson that I’ve had to learn the hard way. I’ve unfortunately missed my fair share of flights but have learned to give myself adequate time to get to the airport – especially around the holidays in New York!
  3. Have necessary information (card numbers, passport number, flight information) in a safe place. Sh*t happens and you’ll never know when you will need this information. I usually keep a copy of my passport on my email and phone and send it to my parents. It’s also critical to make sure someone you trust has access to your flight information in case anything happens.
  4. Travel light! I know this sounds ironic coming from the “packing Princess” (see below), but trust me on this one. Weigh your bags before hand to make sure they aren’t over the weight limit, otherwise you’ll find yourself either repacking at the airport or paying an extravagant baggage fee (no thank you!).  If you want to save yourself some time and money  just pack carry-on’s – I usually opt for the functional back pack and duffle bag.

    They call me the packing princess

    They call me the packing princess

  5. What (not) to wear?  Everyone has varying opinions on how you should dress while traveling, and my answer of course is, “it depends”. I travel a lot for soccer and often times we are required to wear the same thing. It’s comfortable  and I thoroughly enjoy being able to wear sweatsuits on the plane. On the other hand, when I travel alone I enjoy dressing up a bit. A blazer, jeans, cute top, scarf and flats is cute and functional.  You never know who you’ll meet at the airport!
    Traveling in matching gear is comfortable and easy!

    Traveling in matching gear is comfortable and easy!

    Looking professional also has it's perks

    Looking professional also has it’s perks

  6. After you decide what to wear, make sure your choice is easy to get through TSA. I often times avoid putting on a belt until after security (or not at all) and make sure I empty my pockets before getting to the airport. Nothing annoys me (and other travelers) more than somebody who stalls the TSA line because they didn’t “know” they had to take off their belt.
  7. Maybe it’s just the soccer player in me and the bottomless stomach I possess, but I always pack some snacks and an empty reusable water bottle when I travel, whether it’s just a quick trip uptown or a longer international excursion. When you travel internationally, you run the risk of not having food you’re used to or like. My go-to’s are pre-packaged trail mix from Trader Joe’s and Chocolate Chip Cliff Bars for Kids. Just keep in mind some countries don’t allow certain foods to enter into their country so check before hand!
  8. Choose your carry-on wisely. If you decide to pack just a single bag for your carry on, I urge you to pack it in the most ergonomically way possible. I usually keep my laptop closest to my back and have my camera on top so I can pull them both out quickly as I go through security. The front pocket of my backpack usually has gum, headphones, lip balm, and my business card in case I ever accidentally leave it. The middle pocket contains the valuables: passport, boarding pass, wallet, snacks, and a few toiletries. I reserve the pocket closet to my back for my laptop, camera, chargers and a good book.

    Planning what to pack makes traveling so much easier

    Planning what to pack makes traveling so much easier

  9. Have a positive attitude while traveling. Planes get delayed, luggage gets lost, and sometimes you just flat out miss your flight. Everything is going to be okay!  If you stay positive, your travels will be! Relish in the adventure.
  10. Document your travels! As an avid shutter bug and self proclaimed traveling photo journalist (I wish!), I thoroughly enjoy looking back on my adventures and reminiscing of the “good ole days”.  One of my goals when I went abroad was to snap photos of everything in sight – the namesake for this blog.

I hope these tips help you out and you enjoy your next adventure wherever in the world you are!

Auf Wiedersehen!

Auf Wiedersehen!

We’re Back!

We’re approaching day 22 of preseason, but the grueling long set of two a days are only just beginning. Our ten days in the UK proved to be one of the greatest experiences of my young life, but then again, what more could a girl ask for in a trip? Soccer, travel, and surrounded by your best friends and teammates. Here’s a (relatively) quick recap of our trip.

Map of UK Trip

A map of our trip

Panorama of London

Panorama of London

DAY 1

The return to my “homeland” was everything I expected and more. We began our trip in London and spent the entire first day on our feet , walking from our Hotel at County Hall, across the bridge to Westminster Abby, along the River Thames, then back to Buckingham Palace. Though we were exhausted from our red eye from New York, we mustered enough energy to tour the city that day to allow for more free time in London during the trip.

NYUWS on the River Thames

NYUWS all smiles on the River Thames after a grueling long tour and flight

DAY 2

After a solid night’s rest and  the most wonderful breakfast buffet ever (thank you County Hall Marriott!), we set out to explore the London Underground with a trip to the Tower of London, followed by some free time. The Tower of London proved to be an incredibly educational experience, but an even better photo opportunity with the Tower Bridge ( more commonly known by its misnomer, London Bridge). From the Tower Of London, Phebe and I ventured to Harrods then Picadilly Circus, but had to figure out the Tube to do so.

After successfully mastering the Tube, we walked back to the hotel and took a quick nap before we left for our game that night. That night we traveled outside the city to face off against Watford Ladies. We ended with a 2-1 loss, but the overall experience was very eye opening. I think what we all realized was how lucky we are, despite the numerous difficulties we face as NYU soccer players. What surprised us most, that despite England being a soccer powerhouse, the female professional teams, have subpar facilities, treatment, and access. It really set a fire deep in my soul, that made me want to do something.DSC_7920-1

NYUWS & Watford Ladies Prematch

NYUWS & Watford Ladies Prematch

DAY 3

Our last day in London began with a walking tour from NYU London’s own Director for Student Affairs, Nigel Freeman. We walked through Convent Gardens, through the British Musem to NYU London. It’s been really an incredible experience to have set foot in 3 different NYU campuses in Europe just this past year. Though NYU Madrid will forever hold a special place in my heart, NYU London was stunning. If I had more time to study abroad, I would definitely go back to the UK! After the walking tour, we boarded a bus and headed out to Teviot Rangers FC’s home field for a soccer clinic. I think this was definitely one of the highlights of the trip, considering the fact that we got play soccer with little kids with adorable british accents. The sad part however, was that the club didn’t have enough girls to start a girls team to compete – illustrating once again gender inequality in women’s “football” in the UK – something I was familiar with from my time in Spain.

Teviot Rangers Clinic

Teviot Rangers Clinic

Highlight of the Trip

Highlight of the Trip

DAY 4

We continued our trip in England with a half day stop in Stratford-Upon-Avon, more commonly known as Shakespeare’s birth place. We were on our own, so Phebe and I set out with our guide,  Jack and walked along the river, where we saw numerous rowers practicing.  A side note: Jack told us that Stratford-Upon-Avon has one of the best crew clubs in England and has produced many Olympians. We strolled around, basked in the beauty around us, and ended our halfway with a visit to Shakespeare’s grave and lovely French restaurant, where I indulged in my favorite French dish, Croque Madame.

After lunch we hopped on our lovely coach (“bus” for all us Americans) and headed to a professional soccer match. West Bromwich played Bologna in an international friendly with a final score of 2-0 in favor of West Brom. Though it was my first EPL match, it didn’t even begin to compare to the other soccer games I have been to, including El Clásico in February. Following the game, we ventured North to Wales to retreat for the night.

Bologna vs.

Bologna vs. West Brom

Stratford Upon Avon

Stratford Upon Avon

DAY 5

Though we were based in Wales, the majority of Days 5&6 were spent in Chester, England. We spent the morning learning about the ancient Roman, Anglo-Saxon (Mercian), Norman, & Parliamentarian history of sieges and warfare built into the walls of the city of Chester. It was a very beautiful city, considering the age. My favorite part was being able to walk around the entire city outskirts on the raised fortress walls.

That afternoon we faced off against Manchester City Women’s team. Though we didn’t play their full squad, the game was more than competitive. Man City was a great, feisty, physical opponent that will definitely be a benchmark for the rest of the season. Though we didn’t come away with a W, there were many lessons to be learned from that match.

After the game, we made a surprise pit stop at Old Trafford, home to Manchester United. Even though we couldn’t go inside, it was so cool to see the stadium, the Munich memorial, and statues of old players.

Corner against Manchester City

Corner against Manchester City

Man City and NYUWS Pregame Photo

Man City and NYUWS Pregame Photo

NYUWS at Old Trafford

NYUWS at Old Trafford

DAY 6

After two quick days in Wales, we were back on the road to Scotland, home to our guide, Jack. Although I wasn’t initially excited about making the trip up to Glasgow and Edinburgh, the anticipation continued to grow because I didn’t know what to expect. Jack continued to build up my excitement throughout the bus ride before we made one last final stop in Carlisle, England at the second most famous wall in the World: Hadrian’s Wall. On the way, we made an impromptu stop at Lanercost Priory because our education guide, Angie, recommended it from past visits. The priory was gorgeous and if I were to ever get married in England, I would definitely consider that as a location – it’s stunning. Check out some photos here! We spent the majority of our afternoon however in Carlisle, exploring the ruins of Hadrian’s Wall. It’s incredible to think that these ruins have been around for over 1800 years!

We finally made our way into Scotland by dusk, settling into our hotel in Glasgow. We ate a quick dinner before most of us went out to work out and then to sleep.

English Countryside

English Countryside

 

England, UK 2013

Hadrian’s Wall

DAY 7 

We were up bright and early on Tuesday to head into Edinburgh to see the Edinburgh Castle and get a local walking tour. The views from the top of the castle were like none other and the city itself was bustling with tourists – I had no idea it’d be so full. After our walking tour, we were given a few hours to explore the city on our own. I had no idea where to start, but Phebe and I just started walking around the city. I would return to Edinburgh in a heart beat, I feel like I left so much undiscovered.

After a full day in Edinburgh, we boarded the bus back to Glasgow and immediately threw on some soccer gear for our training session at St. Mirren park. We ended up practicing at an indoor facility, which was a new experience for me – I really liked it, except the small field boundaries.

At the top of Edinburgh Castle

At the top of Edinburgh Castle

 

Edinburgh, Scotland, UK 2013

Edinburgh, Scotland, UK 2013

DAY 8

Time seemed to pass by so slow over the course of our trip, that I had begun to feel like I had been in the UK for weeks – I loved it. We began one of our last days with a trip to Loch Lamond, which is at the foot of the Scottish Highlands. We walked around part of the massive lake, and then took a boat tour, where we got to see some old castles along the coastline.

Later that day, we laced up our cleats for a final match against the Hamilton Accies. Though it was a pretty even match, the Accies came out on top.

Castle on Loch Lamond

Castle on Loch Lamond

NYUWS on a ferry at Loch Lamond

NYUWS on a ferry at Loch Lamond

DAY 9

The final full day of our trip will forever hold a special place in my heart and soul. Part of our trip included giving back to the community, and we did so by volunteering at a soccer clinic as well as visiting a Children’s Hospital in Yorkhill Scotland. Though the hospital and our coaches warned us that we might get emotional, nothing could prepare us for the pang of mixed feelings that I felt.

I had the distinct opportunity to meet six year old Euan. He’s an adorable Scottish lad with a debilitating auto-immune disorder that has left him in the hospital for his past three birthdays and on the bone marrow transplant list for quite some time. Even though he didn’t want to wear a hat or talk to us, I just sat there until he got really excited and wanted to show me his robot. Euan and I sat together for no longer than 30 minutes, but he had a profound impact on my life – teaching me that despite the odds, you can find purpose in the work you do – just like his robot.

As we left the hospital, I couldn’t help but tear up. We met tons of children with disease, disabilities, and sicknesses that we were so fortunate to have avoided. It brought me satisfaction that we were able to cheer them up, even if it was just for a little bit.  What’s even better is that all the funds that SAAC raises this year through special events is going directly back to the Yorkhill Foundation564349_10151806917572248_209119384_n

Here’s a video that we presented to the children, which showcases our first couple of days in the UK: NYU Video for Yorkhill Hospital

After our time at the Hospital, we had enough time to venture back to Edinburgh. We were on our own for four hours, so Phebe and I walked up this giant hill to these ruins with views of Scotland – simply stunning. We then returned down the hill, walked on the opposite side of the castle through cute little shops. I picked my Dad up a Scottish rugby jersey and I found some Trinity Shaped earrings I’ve been dying to get before we headed back to Glasgow for our final night in the UK.

DAY 10

This trip passed by quicker than ever, and I caught myself wishing that we could just stay in the UK for an extended period of time. My extreme case of wanderlust has hit me hard and I can only dream about the next time I set foot on an airplane.

Our final half day in the UK was spent exploring Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Art Museum, which had an array of old paintings, sculptures and displays. It wasn’t before long that we were headed to the airport to head back to London then NY. This trip was a blast and I cannot even begin to thank the numerous people who made this all possible including my parents, coaches, athletic department and of course my team!

London, UK 2013

London, UK 2013

For more photos and coverage of our trip visit: http://teamnyuglobal.tumblr.com

Until next time!

Lessons Learned

I still can’t come to terms with the fact that I will be entering into my twenties in a mere ten hours.

Twenty.

It’s not the number that scares me, rather the implications that come with entering into this new decade.

July 1999 - December 2011

July 1999 – December 2011

Legally buying my favorite bottle of wine, playing my last collegiate soccer game, graduating NYU, applying to grad school, getting a real job, and falling in and out of love are just some of the bittersweet things that await me this next decade. Yes I’m scared, but it’s an adventure I’m finally ready to take on.

I know I wouldn’t be at this point in my life without falling down, scraping my knees and getting back up again, so this post is dedicated to the 10 things I’ve learned that have helped me get to this point in my life.

  1. Smiling is key to getting through anything. Learn to smile. And if you don’t know how, fake it till you make it. The flash of my pearly whites have gotten me through numerous awkward situations, a handful of Spanish conversations where I am completely lost in translation, and have helped me forge more friendships than I can remember.
  2. Take lots of pictures. Though I’ve been criticized and told I take way too many pictures, I find solace in the fact that I am constantly getting asked to “upload this” or to “send me that pic”. I’m not just snapping away people and places, I’m capturing memories – bottling them up for years to come.
  3. Laugh at yourself. A lot. They say laughter is the best medicine and I’d have to agree. I probably wouldn’t have made it out alive of my teenage years if I wasn’t able to laugh at my gawky self and my less than flattering outfit choices.
  4. Admit defeat, but never accept it. This life lesson stems partly from my athletic career. Like I’ve said numerous times, I hate to lose, but defeat is the only way to learn our weaknesses.
  5. Don’t be afraid to try new things. After embarking on my “Twenties” list I began to find who I truly am and the things I really like. Though I wasn’t able to cross everything off my list, I feel it brought out my adventurous spirit which is truly what is important.
  6. You don’t have to defend your actions and thoughts to anybody but yourself. ‘Nuff said.
  7. Traveling gives you more than good stories and a newfound sense of global awareness. After living overseas as a child, and now studying in Spain, I see things through a completely new perspective. I’ve caught the traveling bug, symptoms include increased sense of adventure, empty bank accounts, new friends, and countless memories. If you get too close you might catch it too!
  8. Procrastination will never get you anywhere, except to a diner at 4 in the morning with a bad cup of joe. I promise I’ll tell you about this one later.
  9. Take care of your body because it’s the only one you have. I’ve been trying to find balance for a long time and I will never admit it’s easy. On top of nutrition, I’ve pushed my body to extremes, caught myself overtraining and doing things that were in the end detrimental to my body. It’s all about moderation in everything you do, especially for your body.
  10. Priorities are everything. Family is everything to me and without them, I’d be nothing. It’s important to keep in mind the people who you got you to where you are today and say thanks every once in awhile.

Hope you find these lessons helpful and they get you through a tough day or week!

Oh! And a huge shout out to my family for putting up with me the past 20 years!IMG_3689

Hola Amigos

Hey friends! Welcome to another Megventure!  The countdown has officially begun for Madrid. Less than 12 hours until I plant my feet firmly on Spanish ground and begin my next world adventure. It is still incredibly surreal that I’ll be living in a foreign country for the next FIVE MONTHS – I’m sure when the jet lag catches up to me is when everything will hit me. Living abroad is nothing new to me, but exploring, adventuring, and forging a path on my own is incredibly fresh and novel to me – it makes me tremble in my boots (but just a little bit). The fact that I won’t be able to communicate fluently and that stores won’t be open 24/7 will provide just enough culture shock to settle me down.

I’m currently sitting in the Dallas-Fort Worth American Terminal nibbling on a banana, charging my iPhone (not that it’ll be of much use in Spain), jamming out to some music Phebe picked out for me, and typing my life away. This morning was an early one beginning at 0430 when American Airlines called to confirm my flight. Less than an hour later I was awoken by Bandit and Bear for the last time this break and made my way downstairs with my bags. I think everybody would be surprised to hear that I fit ALL of my clothes into a single suitcase and the rest of my shoes and toiletries into my NYU duffle. YES. You heard right, ONE SUITCASE. Let’s not recall the numerous times I have overpacked, but I think I deserve a crown or something for that. Unfortunately my reign as Packing Princess did not last long because as soon as I checked my bags I was told a) my suitcase was 4 pounds over and b) I did not have two free bags. Thankfully enough my bright eyed smile came to the rescue and the woman felt bad and upgraded my seat on my flight to Madrid (though I did have to pay for my bags).

No Idea How I Fit It All In There

No Idea How I Fit It All In There

After getting through security with a quick pat-down of my hair “because it’s beautifully poofy” (yes, the TSA agent really did say that), I made my way to my gate and promptly was asked by a soccer Mom if I really did play soccer (as if the soccer jacket and lovely thunder thighs didn’t give it away). We talked soccer for a long time, which always puts me in a good mood, then I boarded the plane where I sat next to a huge Everton fan. It was a quick two hour jaunt over to Dallas, where I quickly made my way to the Admirals Club. As soon as I sat down, a replay of a Liga game was on at the bar and two Barça fans were smoothly speaking Spanish – discussing Messi’s recent Balon D’Oro win (Go Barça!).

There’s really something about the beautiful game that makes it so unique – it transcends age, gender, race, everything. I can be anywhere in the world, and fútbol never ceases to find me. I am truly a lucky individual to not only be a student of the game as a player, but a fan, and hopefully a teacher of the game. To my amazement and incredibly disappointment I have heard from numerous sources that women’s soccer is not a commonality in Spain. I’m going to take this as my opportunity to make an impact and hopefully spread soccer to the female population because it has had such a definite and huge impact on my life.

Missing Them Already

Missing Them Already

I’m getting ready to eat some almuerzo (lunch) so I’ll finish here.

If anybody is in Spain or Europe for that matter, please do not hesitate to contact me – I’d love to meet up.

For more updates, check out my twitter @megpatten and my instagram @mpatten1

Palabra del Día (word of the day): Aventura – Adventure

Hasta Luego

Blur

The past few days have gone by in a blink of an eye. I cannot believe that preseason is already here and my Mom has already left. So many memories have been made and way too many pictures have been taken – I don’t even know if I can give the last week justice.

A Collaboration

A Collaboration

On my Mom and I’s last full day together in the city, we began our morning heading off towards NYU from her SoHo hotel. We grabbed a delicious breakfast at my favorite deli, “NoHo” and then I gave her a tour of the village since last time she visited she did not have the opportunity to walk by foot around campus. Following our adventure in the village, we walked down to Canal Street in the rain and began to cruise around. After a long drenched walk through SoHo we found ourselves in Little Italy and then began walking to the famed Katz deli. Katz Deli – let me tell you – so nomalicious! My mom and I split the turkey sandwich on rye bread – it was more than enough for the two of us – did I mention it was so yummy? I cannot even begin to describe the amazingness of the sandwich. Anyways, the rain was still pouring but we decided to make a run for McSorley’s which was a little less than a mile away. I could once again, go on and on about how cool of a place McSorley’s is, but I guarantee I cannot even begin to describe the oldest watering hole in Manhattan – take my word for it and visit!

Katz Deli - SO YUMMY

Katz Deli – SO YUMMY

 

Mom and Her New Favorite Bar

Mom and Her New Favorite Bar

The rain finally decided to subside after a round of black and tans at the pub and we once again ventured downtown towards the World Trade Center Memorial. Even though we did not get the opportunity to go inside the memorial, we did learn a lot about the reconstruction from a worker named Massimo. It’s so beautiful to see WTC#7 back up and Freedom Tower is almost built – simply a sign of our strength and prosperity since the attacks. Later in September I’ll write about the experience from my perspective when I was younger (I lived close to D.C. on 9/11).

Freedom Tower

Freedom Tower

After a walk around the FiDi, we retreated back to our hotel room since my teammate Phebe had just flown in and we wanted to grab dinner with her. We wound up at our favorite, Washington Square Diner – a late night staple that got me through way too many papers. It was the perfect ending to a long walking day and a great mini vacation for my Mom and I because the next day we were more than busy moving in.

Teammates

Teammates

I couldn’t fall asleep that night – maybe it was the time difference, the excitement of moving in or maybe just the combination of the two that made it so hard to shut my eyes. Either way, I ended up getting up early enough to head on over to Carlyle to move in. Although check in was less than a smooth experience, everything turned out okay and Cami and I got a pretty gnarly room. A few hours and a ton of boxes later we moved in to our new abode on Union Square. That afternoon we had a team meeting; it was amazing seeing everybody’s beautiful faces again after a long summer spent apart and meeting tons of new girls.

Roommates

Roommates

Granted it’s been a little less than a week since our first meeting but so much has happened, I don’t want to overwhelm everybody (plus I’m super tired and have to get up at 6 for practice). I’ll write again about the team and everything great that has happened since our first practice. Until next time!

P.S. Check this out! (I know super embarrassing, right?)

Adiós San Diego, Hello Indy

Good morning from the oh so comfy seats in Terminal One of San Diego International Airport. Today I’m headed on my first Summer adventure to the NCAA Career in Sports Forum, and I could not be even more excited, minus the super long flights. As with most adventures I embark on, there are bound to be a few bumps along the way, and I of course had to start this one out the same way. Whenever I fly by myself I more often than not fly American Airlines, which ensures that I’m one of the first to board with Priority Access. When I booked these flights to Indianapolis I was informed that I’d be flying Southwest, which is totally fine by me. Little did I know, however, that you need to check in online to secure your seat and boarding time. Southwest: 1, Meg: 0. By the time I found this out and checked in online, I was ecstatic to find out that I was last to board – woo hoo! (Please note my sarcasm right now) No worries though, I’m still having fun and promised myself I will check in exactly 24 hours before hand to ensure that I’m first on that plane home. As a very smart person once said, ” Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, Shame on me.”

It's all good in terminal one!

It’s all good in terminal one!

Anyways, sitting here in the terminal, I’ve been playing myself a great game of “People Watching”while  jamming out to music and blogging on my computer. It’s one of my favorite games to play, especially in NYC with friends, but an airport is just as fun. We all try and guess what people do for a living and what their “deal” is – it’s very fun, especially when you’re bored! There are some very interesting subjects in the boarding area, here are my top three so far:

  1. The thirty-something couple sitting across from me, making out with their hands all over each other. Headed to Sacramento; it’s interesting to note that they have no luggage with them, she has a ring, he doesn’t… Maybe he just proposed?
  2. The Mom with the four kids all under the age of ten. Each kid not only has a humongous oversized backpack, but also a matching pillow pet to match. I’m surprised World War III hasn’t broken out yet, but who knows maybe she’s bribing them with candy.
  3. The business man yelling loudly into his blackberry with his iPhone in the other hand, probably looking up sports scores from last night. I just want to say, Hey it’s 9 in the morning, can you take it down a notch, I’m still sleeping.

That’s it for now, time to board 🙂 Next up Denver, Colorado!

Jam of the Day: Airplanes by B.o.B feat. Haley Williams from Paramore