The GoGlobal Blog

Author: Lindsay Chow

Hello, friends! My name is Lindsay and I am a Junior Advertising & Public Relations major. I was born in New York but grew up in Hong Kong, I go to school in Chicago and now I will be at the John Felice Rome Center in Rome, Italy. You may say I have a little bit of a travel bug in me! I love trying new foods and look forward to tasting my way through Europe. Stay tuned for my successes and rookie flops while I do what the Romans do!
Easter in Brussels

Easter in Brussels

Hey all! How are you all doing? Happy Easter for those who celebrating Easter this past weekend. My friend, Torie, and I went over to Brussels, Belgium for Easter weekend. We had a great time and here are some highlights!

Victory #1: Brussels was the first trip that we planned on our own without any school help and we picked the country and the city and the AirBnB. Torie and I are both planners so we felt personal victories when things went well. The first amazing thing was our AirBnB.

Brussels AirBNB

Have you ever met someone that was just so exceptionally interesting and totally put your fun facts to shame? Well that was our AirBNB host, Aude. Aude, has just recently had a career change and has her travels and most recent adventures to share. She knew the area that we were staying in and the touristy areas as well, providing maps and directions of all kinds. Incredibly helpful and great for us planners!

Victory #2: We had to have the infamous Belgian chocolate and while we were heading to the center of town, Grand Place, we ran into one of many Leonidas chocolate stores. Of course we went in and was immediately overwhelmed in all the best ways possible. I asked the expert behind the counter for some help and I have no regrets about that. Chocolate is always a good thing.

Brussels Leonidas Chocolate

Victory #3: Continuing on the famous food trend, we had to get the Belgian waffle. We initially got really excited and purchased a waffle from a waffle van for 2Euro. Little did we know that we made a tourist mistake! We could’ve gotten waffles that were bigger and even tastier for 1Euro. But regardless, I can understand why these waffles are raved about, they are delicious!

Brussels Waffle

Victory #4: Aude, had told us that Belgium unfortunately is not known for their superb food. Aside from beer, mussels, fries and waffles, of course. She encouraged us to try food from different countries as they were popular and all over the place. Torie and I decided that we wanted to try Vietnamese, since she had never had it before. We got super lost and wandered into a random area that definitely did not have Pho but Torie, the map whizz navigated us back to Pho Pho, the Vietnamese restaurant. I in turn, taught her how to use chopsticks!

Brussels Torie Using Chopsticks

Romans really like Roman food so we wanted to adventure out and we were excited that Brussels gave us the opportunity to try different foods. It’s the little things!

Victory #5: Everyone told us to go to Bruges, a city north of Brussels. We had some challenges with buying the tickets at the train station because Belgian machines really like you to use either a card or have 30Euro in coins, both of which we didn’t have. However, after some navigating we finally made it to Bruges. It is a fairytale, cobblestone, river, swans, and cute stores in tow. After some semi aimless wandering around, we finally made our way over to the local brewery for a tour. As beer enthusiast, you can only imagine how excited Torie and I were.

Brussels Brewery Rooftop The tour detailed the history of the beer and the family behind the beer, ending with a great view of the city on the rooftop of the building.

Victory #6: The last and final victory of many, was our trip to the Sunday flea and food market. I always love going to markets in various countries because goods are affordable and unique. You also get to taste a little bit of the local life. This market proved no different. There was everything from clothing, shoes to full roasted chickens, kitchen supplies, cosmetics, flowers, fruits and vegetables. You could get everything at this market and it was so wonderfully overwhelming.

Brussels Strawberries

Torie and I got so excited about the fresh produce that we decided to get a whole crate of strawberries for 5Euro. This is actually a steal compared to both American and Italian prices and they were delicious! Even though together we have both eaten about 50 strawberries and may actually turn into a strawberry, there is still no regrets with this purchase!

Brussels Flower Market

Needless to say it was a great trip and I hope one day I will be able to go back to this wonderful city.

I hope you all had a great weekend!

That’s all for now.


History in Our Backyard

History in Our Backyard

Ciao everyone! How are you doing? It has been a few weeks since I last wrote to you and to be frank, not much has happened! After a great spring break trip that you can read about here, I actually got a really random and bad case of Tonsillitis, so there have been a lot of bed rest filled days. This weekend however, after feeling much better, I went on a WWII study trip organized by Loyola.

Our trip was led by two wonderful JFRC alums who were at JFRC in 64′. They shared their expansive knowledge on the war, various historical sites, but also their experiences living in Italy at the time. My personal knowledge of WWII has always been from a textbook. But this weekend I was able to see first hand some of the remnants of the war. I apologize if I am unable to eloquently share my experience this weekend as I am still unable to grapple the history that I saw this weekend. Bear with me!

My favorite part of this weekend was visiting the WWII museum in Piana Delle Orme. This huge plot of land is filled with WWII artifacts. The first thing you see when you arrive are large planes, helicopters and trains that make for an incredible experience. WW2 Airplane

WW2 Tank

To be able to see and touch equipment used in the war made the experience more real and authentic. The various displays were not only detailed but incredibly insightful. Machinery worked and moved like it did when people were actually using it, tanks were parked right in front of you. It was truly amazing and the only words I could utter were “this is so cool!”. We were able to see a monumental period of history right in our backyard of Rome, this opportunity further supported my belief that Rome is the city of eternal history. There is so much to see here, regardless of what country you are from.

Agriculture WW2

Later in the afternoon we went to the Sicily-Rome American cemetery for WWII and this was an impactful part of the weekend. The image alone of tombstones being the same, perfectly aligned and filling large plots of land is both saddening but incredibly beautiful. Here we were able to visit the graves of some Loyola alum who fought in the war, and various other courageous men and women that served our country.

Sicily-Rome American Cemetery

One of the JFRC alums, Jim, explained how it was said that the WWII generation was the best generation. After visiting the Sicily-Rome American cemetery and hearing war stories of incredibly brave individuals, I truly believe that statement. The bravery, tenacity, courage and loyalty of the men and women who served America in WWII is truly breathtaking and awe-inspiring. There are no “thank you’s” that will signify the impact that these men and women made on our country. I listened to war stories filled with plight, death and tragedy, but regardless there was a determination to get back out their and fight in the war.  We were given the opportunity to retire the colors and looking out at the graves, at sunset filled me with such genuine appreciation.

To the men and women who have served and are serving their country, thank you for guiding your country with bravery, courage, determination and true heroism.

Till next time, friends.


The Best of the Balkans

The Best of the Balkans

Spring break is over and I have some mixed feelings about it. I am sad that I am ending my beautiful travels in Eastern Europe but also surprisingly happy to be back in Rome and on campus. The everyday hustle and bustle of Rome can be a monotonous and overwhelming at times and this goes for every city, not just Rome. I was happy to leave to get a change of scenery for a bit! I went on a Loyola facilitated study trip with the wonderful SLA Chandni and because we went to so many different places I thought I would write a little snippet about every place we went.

Belgrade, Serbia

Belgrade November Man Park
Belgrade Fortress. FUN FACT: This is where one of the last scene of November Man was filmed.

Belgrade was the first stop on our spring break trip and I loved being in this city! I had no expectations going into this trip and Belgrade set the bar very high for all the other places we went. There is an incredible amount of history, war, sadness and resilience in the Balkans, and I got my first taste of that in Belgrade. Our tour guide Jelena was very young when the Kosovo War occurred and she shared some fascinating stories of her life. It is crazy to think that when I was four years old, people in a different country were living through war. You read about war in history books but when you hear first hand stories, the information is more impactful.

Belgrade Graffiti

Belgrade is a young city that has a vibrant art/graffiti scene and nightlife. Each building has beautiful pieces of art, some next to bullet hole remnants from the war. I do not know how to put this in a more eloquent way, but people in Belgrade are just so exceptionally cool. There is a sense of life and happiness that is refreshing! We also met with these Serbian exchange students that did a year of high school in America. After hearing all the history and the death that has happened in this city, they were interesting to talk to because they talked about everyday life in Belgrade. The things that they missed about America, (Mainly Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups) simply showed that love of culture has no boundaries.

Novi Sad, Serbia

Petrovaradin Fortress, Novi Sad, Serbia.
Petrovaradin Fortress, Novi Sad, Serbia.

Novi Sad is a small town about an hour away from Belgrade. We took a day trip and walked around seeing various churches, mosques and historical buildings. One of the important monuments in Novi Sad is this clock tower and I will not lie, it was a hike to get up here! This tested my lack of athletic skills a lot, but the view was breathtaking. Jelena was telling us that during the summer there is a music festival that is well known in Europe. How cool would it be to have a music festival in a fortress? Sure puts Lollapalooza to shame!

Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina 

Sarajevo Mountain View

Sarajevo is the definition of a beautiful ski town, it is about four hours away from Belgrade by car and the whole ride looked like a fantasy. Snow capped mountains and trees is always breathtaking. We went to an old military tank fortress on top of a mountain, it was all quite surreal, something you do not see on a normal tour. Sarajevo too was plagued with war in 1993 and our tour guide Skender was young when the war was occurring. When we live in this “modern world” it can be baffeling to think that ethnic cleansing occurred just 20 some years ago.

Sarajevo Mountain Selfie

In Sarajevo I also met my current new baked good obsession, Burek. Burek is this beautiful meat, croissant swirl and just thinking about not having it in Rome is making me feel some kind of way. Oh the memories of my love, Burek!

Delicious Burek

Split, Croatia

Marjan Split Croatia
Marjan, Split, Croatia.

Our last stop was Split, Croatia and it was perfect weather up until the day we left! For most of the trip it was cold, snowy and rainy but in Split, as you can see from this photo, it was nice and sunny out. The people in this city are incredibly dressed and I think it is because there is one main street that everyone walks down and you are bound to run into someone you know. A big thing to do here is island hopping, but we were advised to come back during the summer and do that then instead. Split is a popular beach town but is also a popular stop for backpackers. I would love to come back and see what this city is like during the summer!

That is all for now!


On Saturday, We Go To The Opera.

On Saturday, We Go To The Opera.

Hello friends!

I know it has been quite a while but I wanted to write when I actually had something to update you all on. It has been a few weeks since I last wrote you and I will say that I do feel more at home in Rome, not completely because I still get so incredibly lost, but we are taking baby steps!

For the month of February my friends and I have been taking it easy and decided to stay in Rome and explore. Many JFRC alum have said that so many people travel to other cities in Europe that they often neglect the city that we live in. My friends and I wanted to avoid that, so we thought staying here for the month of February would be a good idea and I fully support our decision.


Gusta Pizza

Friday Torie, my friend, and I went back to Florence for round two. We both loved Florence and if you didn’t catch how much I really loved Florence, check out my first post about it!  This time around things felt different, we did not feel like complete rookies but what would a trip be without some rookie mistakes? We started off our day going to the infamous Gusta Pizza, supposedly the best in Florence. It was good pizza but I will say not entirely sure what the hype is all about (don’t hate me for saying that!). Everyone who goes gets a number ticket and I guess the tradition is to sign it and insert it into the table. So following on trend, we did and it was quite a struggle getting it in the table but it was success!

The first time we went to Florence we found a bag market and our hearts filled with glee. This time we found another bigger market and my heart pretty much exploded. Nothing a little retail therapy can’t fix!



On Saturdays, we go to the opera! I have never been to an opera before so I was not entirely sure what to expect but it was beautiful. We went to Tosca at Teatro Dell’ Opera and it was a dress rehearsal and the first show that they had.  Being able to get a little dressed up and just casually go to the opera on a normal Saturday really proved that I was in fact studying abroad in Italy. Being able to see a proper opera house and the costumes and set was quite an experience. I feel so cultured and so Italian.


Till next time!


Finally Getting Used to This City

Finally Getting Used to This City

Happy February everyone! Today I write to you more adjusted to Rome than I was last month. It’s only the 9th but February seems like it will be a good month! Here are some of my highlights and fails thus far.

Papa Francesco

Papa Francesco

Yes, I saw Papa Francesco and I am still in shock and it happened last week. Loyola gave us the day off to attend his first Papal Audience for the month of February. Whether you are Catholic or not, this is a fantastic opportunity to meet the great leader of the Catholic church. A bunch of us Loyola kids were told to go line up early so we could get a good seat inside. Well us brainiacs thought that 4:30AM (yes people, AM) would be a great idea. Wrong! I will tell you, this was perhaps the biggest fail since I’ve been in Rome, HUGE rookie mistake. Just picture this in your head: 200 Loyola students huddled together in the rainy, cold, windy weather at 4:30AM. I hope you laughed, because I still laugh at myself for going that early. Regardless, I saw the Pope and it was amazing.



We had a makeup class day on Friday due to our day off for Papal Audience so my friends and I decided to check off some of the closer cities in Italy. Our first stop, Florence. Despite getting incredibly lost and walking around the city of Florence six or seven times, I will confirm that I in fact love the city of Florence. Coming from the chaotic city of Rome where everyone is going somewhere, Florence was a great change of pace. It is quiet, clean, small and simple. What I liked most about Florence was that there was a great balance between historical sites and entertainment (shopping). You could walk through the streets and get a taste of the tourist side of Florence but also life there in general. Currently planning a trip to go back!


Venice + Friends

Florence and Venice were our first trips we planned when we got to Rome and another rookie mistake we made was not knowing when Carnival was happening. I thought Carnival was only one week but it’s actually two! So when we went it was very crowded and did change my feelings towards Venice. If we had gone during a time that was not Carnival I think I would’ve liked it but being in a huge crowd with lots of people in costumes is not entirely my scene. A plus side was that it was great weather and very sunny, making the crowds slightly more bearable.

That’s all I got for now. Till next time! 


Partially a Roman?

Partially a Roman?

Campania, Italy.
Campania, Italy.

Ciao amici! To be quite honest, I feel very cool greeting you all in Italian, some how makes me feel significantly more Italian. I have been here for about two weeks now and I can say that I am slowly adjusting.

People often like to glamorize study abroad because 97% of it is super glamorous. You are in a foreign country, exploring, eating and learning, that is a pretty fabulous life if you ask me! But there are also the other experiences that factor into studying abroad. Experiences such as homesickness, language trial and error and physically and mentally adjusting, that not so many people talk about. Now to be clear I am not at all a “debbie downer”, I’m just trying to embrace all of the study abroad experience and part of that are the challenges. Here are some lessons/personal remedies I have learned over the past two weeks:

1) Homesickness is real and normal! I am 21 years old and I miss my mom and my dog and I am not at all afraid to admit that. Well okay, at first I was embarrassed to admit that but feeling this way is normal. I had to put it into perspective. I just moved to a brand new country for four months, naturally I will miss things and people.

2) You will have several language fails. We were in Campania this weekend and a kind waiter came to take my dish away and I accidentally said “basta” which is the equivalent of saying “enough already!” but what I really meant to say was “finito”.  Major face palm moment, but that is a part of learning a new language! All the Italians I have interacted with are very willing to help me and correct my awful Italian and I am very grateful. Those language fails will be engrained in your brain, often times from deep embarrassment, but that is totally okay!

3) You will have moments that will make you say “Momma I made it!”. There have been moments in the last two weeks that have made me want to strike the iconic Rocky pose because I felt that I have accomplished a big feat. Okay, in reality these moments are actually quite minuscule but I felt like a champ. Moments such as tackling the bus system kind of on my own, going grocery shopping and not getting lost, knowing how to actually get somewhere and knowing what store to get something at. These are very small moments but I did in fact run (metaphorically) back to JFRC and text my Mom. I’m still very proud.

Till next time my friends! Ciao!


Ciao from Rome!

Ciao from Rome!

Colosseum, Rome, Italy.
Colosseum, Rome, Italy.

Hello friends! I have been in Rome for five whole days now and the feelings of being fantastically overwhelmed have slightly subsided. If this post seems frazzled it’s because I have experienced so much in such a short amount of time.

The first few days of being in Rome were going to various information sessions for orientation. But the real adventures occurred at night when we ventured off into the city on our own. My friends and I have gotten lost a total of four times but I guess you can’t really get lost if you didn’t know where you wanted to go in the first place. Despite all the various adventures, I do have some highlights.

1) Vatican City. This was my first adventure into the city and my goodness does this city look completely different during the day.

Vatican City
Vatican City

The Vatican is beautiful and right now they still have the Nativity scene and the huge Christmas tree up, so I got to feel the Christmas cheer for just a bit longer. Because this was our first trip out by ourselves, it was even more impactful. How cool is it that I am in Rome, taking a casual trip to the Vatican at night. Oh, no big deal! (So cool!!)

2) Colosseum. After watching The Gladiator a few years ago, visiting the Colosseum has been on my bucket list. I can tell you it did not disappoint at all! Looking at how intact this building still is is mind blowing. Thinking about what the Colosseum was used for seems like the Romans lived in such a different world. It was a gorgeous day as well, so we were able to get some really great photos.

3) Neighborhood Outing. One of the activities the staff here has planned for orientation is a dinner out at a local restaurant.  This was one of my favorite things I’ve done thus far because it encourages you to see the hidden gems of the community around us. A lot of people love going into the historic district of Rome, and there is nothing wrong with that, but meeting the locals is equally important. We went to this wonderful Sicilian restaurant and I do not have any photos because I was so focused on my food. The conversations, food and wine made it a wonderful, very stuffed night. Now I can see why the Italians view eating as a social event, can’t say I mind.

That’s all I got for now!

Till Next Time,