Ski Trip to Bardonecchia

I have a secret love for snowboarding. Well, not so secret anymore, but definitely a strong love. My boyfriend took me snowboarding on one of our first dates and ever since I have been in love with him and with this sport. He has been a very patient teacher (although I am a rather complicated person to teach) and this year was my first ever ski trip. Oh, how I waited it! We decided to go to Bardonecchia, which is close to Torino, the 2006 Olympic city. Although I was very excited, the thought of snowboarding on real mountains was a bit scary. But it all went so much better than expected.

On our first day on the mountain we had a perfect sunny weather. It was sunny enough to make my face tomato red for the next two days, but it felt just perfect. The snow was also good and a bonus was that there wasn´t so many people as my boyfriend had always warned me about. I practiced and learned and soon enough felt rather good about myself. There are many different slopes in Bardonecchia, some are very steep, some better for beginners. I was happy that I could also try the Olympic one, although it did scare me a bit.

On our second day we got a different kind of perfect weather. It has been snowing the entire previous night and kept snowing a bit during the day. I think I will always remember that feeling of perfect fresh snow under my board. There was so much fresh snow that we managed to get stuck in it, of course that happened when we went off piste (nothing dangerous, it was still in the ski resort). When going off piste the layer of snow is very thick and when you fall it is very easy to get stuck. For a moment I thought I will stay there in the snow for real, but we managed to push our limits and I can say now that it was another awesome experience. We also spent some time in snowpark, where I tried my first tiny jumps and rails. I felt really proud.

The whole experience was definitely one of the greatest I´ve ever had. If I had to change anything in Bardonecchia, then it would be opening hours. It felt totally unfair that we had to leave around 4:30 in the afternoon, leaving us with only 6 hours of intense training when I was ready for 6 more. Needless to say that my legs didn´t agree with me the next day.

Here are some tips that I find useful for first-time visitors in Bardonecchia:

1. If you are a student then you get 50% of discount, but you should fill a form before and not forget to take your student card with you.

2. If you think that it will be too much hassle or just too expensive to take the equipment with, consider renting it. I took everything else with me except the board. If you choose to rent, do your homework, it might be cheaper to register for it before.

3. Start your day early, there are less people in the morning and the day passes so quickly.

4. Wear your protections. Really, I don´t know what I would do without the big-butt pants, let alone the knee protections and of course most important, the helmet.

5. Have fun!

I really miss Bardonecchia already, can´t believe that soon is the time to put the snowboard aside for so many months.

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A walk through Central Park

To have a nice long walk in Central Park is definitely a “must” when visiting New York. For once the weather was on our side and we could take the best of this magnificent park. Enjoying the views from many movies seen, following the squirles, cheering secretly to all the sporty people running and enjoying a little quiet time away from the city noise makes the day perfect.

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Alice in Wonderland is one of my big favorites and her statue is just adorable. It felt like seeing old friends. We are all mad here 😉

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Blizzard in New York and the Brooklyn Bridge

I was lucky enough to be in New York city during the big blizzard. At least it was expected to be serious, reality was much different. As Nordic girls all the fuzz around a snowstorm seemed rather funny for us. Indeed, for us it was just a normal winter weather, no need for the drama. Of course, I have to admit that just after I got home from New York, I got the most annoying cold, so I might have overestimated my Nordic strength to handle bad weather, but I am very much alive and healthy by now.

Anyway, with the weather being as it was, we managed to walk around all day long Seeing the Brooklyn Bridge without no soul around was quite an experience. I always imagined it full of tourists, but not with that weather. I must say that I enjoyed the quiet walk a lot even though it was a bit chilly.

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Snapshots from New York

Just couple of weeks ago (time keeps flying like a snitch) I visited New York with my best friend. I always love the time spent with her. We ended up being incredibly lucky and got upgraded both on the plane and in our hotel, gotta love that kind of luck, especially while being used to traveling on budget! Overall we spent great time together in the Big Apple.

Here are some random snapshots from the trip, will show you more soon.

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On our very first evening we were lucky to spot batman. I was like “omg, I´m your biggest fan” and ran to take a photo with him.

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Last day in Tokyo

Days go fast when you`re having good time. We spent our last day in Japan visiting Tjukiji fish market, doing last minute shopping and enjoying tasty food. It was the only time we had sushi in Japan, I was ready to eat it three times a day, but turns out there´s so many other good dishes to try out. Not that sushi wasn´t tasty, it was perfect. Food is definitely something I´m gonna miss about Japan.

I loved the fish market. It was so different from Tokyo we were used to see, almost like a secret world. It felt very real, best word I can find to describe it. Reading from a travel guide, it didn´t feel like anything so special, but in real life it was totally worth to check out. We missed the tuna auction as it starts way too early, but had good time wondering around anyway.

We ended the day and our journey in Japan walking in Rikugien garden. It felt like a fairy tale with all the lights and music. A perfect ending. The short time we spent in Japan taught me a lot. First of all that misfortune doesn´t define the trip. There are millions of things that can get wrong and the luck is not always in our hands, but it does not make the travel bad. There are always so many things to enjoy and admire, no point to stress about small things. It´s ok to ask for help even if you´d think that locals can´t speak English anyways, there are always ways to make yourself clear. I will keep this trip close to my heart, Japan is a beautiful country with amazing nature, helpful people, delicious food and so much more.

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Visiting the deers in Nara

Nara, a lovely town near Kyoto, was definitely the place I waited to visit the most. The reason was simple: I wanted to see the deers. I read early about the park where the deers walk freely, side by side with pedestrians. When we arrived, it was as excited as I imagined. The park itself is amazing and there are many things to see. We visited Tōdai-ji temple, which is impressive. But the stars are still the deers. They own the park, it is their home and they sure act like bosses. They are used to being fed and if you don´t feed them, they will ask for it. Couple of them bit me gently from my butt when I wasn´t as fast with the cookies as they wanted to. We also almost lost the map to a deer, but I chased him and got it back, because I was worried that paper might not be the best thing for he´s digestive system. It was great to see how well the park works, I didn´t see any people mistreating the animals or giving wrong kind of food to them. Although the deers are amazing animals and such majestic creatures, it is important to still remember that they are wild animals and are not there for the entertainment.

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New year, new goals!

I am not so good in New Year`s resolutions usually, but I am rather excited to write down some this time. I have a feeling that it is going to be a great year and I promise to make the best of it!

While making any big promises I try to stay realistic and promise to myself only the things that are up to me (more or less)

So in 2015 I promise to myself to:

1. Get that masters degree, seriously, do it.

2. Get driving license. That is a fun goal as I actually really enjoy driving lessons. I know it´s hard work and takes a lot of practice, but it is wort it. Road trips, here I come!

3. Lear Italian. I assigned to language classes and am waiting for the conformation of the course now. I would really want to begin already. By the end of 2015 I should be able to have conversations in Italian. Fingers crossed!

4. Be regular with trainings. With my lifestyle regularity is not the easiest task. I made the start already and have been going to gym lately, just have to stick to it!

So those are my main goals for 2015. Of course there are many more dreams and little wishes, but I start with these and see what else comes up.There will be traveling too, I just try to avoid getting crazy with planning, but I can tell that there will be a big trip coming up very soon.

Have a great new year! (still not too late, right?)