July 15, 2019
Ciao, families and friends of the girl gang!!!
We are here!!!! And we are so excited to tell you about our first couple of days in Italia. This group is full of incredible young women and Maddie and I could not be more thrilled to spend two weeks with each of them.
So, how does every good all-girls trip start? With some bus ride karaoke. We boarded our bus to transfer from the Venice airport to Cortina, and sounds of Taylor Swift (and our other favorite female artists) filled the air. Sarah was the first to sing along with Maddie and me to the Wicked soundtrack, and our snacks of Oreos and vivance chips only further fueled the flame of karaoke. After a few rousing renditions of “Let it Go” from Frozen, we transitioned to what we like to call “Speed Friendshipping.” The girls all took turns to come up to the front of the bus to introduce themselves with a series of get-to-know-you questions. We simultaneously responded “awww!!” when we heard that Katherine’s perfect combination of two animals would be a puppy and a penguin. (How cute would that animal be!) We also learned about each other’s hometowns, the sports they play, and what movies they watched on that 9–hour flight.
After resting a bit on the bus, we arrived in Cortina and hit the town for some lunch and, of course, gelato! Our first introduction to the Italian pasta life was followed by three-flavors-in-one gelato which Izzy couldn’t get enough of. All of us a bit comatose from jet lag and a hearty meal, we decided to talk a walk around the lovely town of Cortina. We came upon a small park where we played “Two Truths and a Lie” and Lindsey stumped us all with her fact about the age difference between her and her brother. We also played the game “Look Up, Look Down” and Cate and Lizy had an epic “veggie off” — Lizy won and was crowned our ultimate winner. We wrapped up our afternoon with showers back at the hotel and made our way to a yummy pizza dinner. After dinner we had our first Moonup together and Emily and AP were chosen as our first LODs for our first activity day.
We all went to bed happy to be in Italy and happy to be together! And we woke up feeling excited for our first activity — a Via Ferrata alongside a breathtaking waterfall. McLeod blew us all away right as we hit the trail with her speedy hiking pace and we were all trying to keep up with her from the start. She’s an impressive speed demon! But regardless of pace, we all enjoyed the chance to get to know one another better while being in the great outdoors. Lia told me all about her travels to Spain, Grace showed the whole group how to “woah” when we stopped for lunch, and Cate helped celebrate our guide’s 40th birthday by leading us in the “Happy Birthday” song. Everyone reveled in our first taste of the Dolomites’ beauty and we’re looking forward to all that is to come during our trekking section!
We ended our day today and our Cortina stay with a fantastic Moonup where our LODs chose a quote about being the authentic version of yourself. We’re so excited for the next two weeks because Maddie and I genuinely believe that’s what comes with each Moondance trip — the opportunity to unashamedly be YOU! Especially when there are no boys around!!
We’re so looking forward to it and can’t wait to update you along the way ♥️
Mary, Maddie, and the whole DOL 3 girl gang
July 14, 2019
All students have arrived in Italy and this Dolomites trip is on its way.
More updates to come!