February 9, 2014 by mariannat92
Tomorrow my classes start again, and SO here goes another round up of what happened here in January.
Annie and I went for lots of walks
By the time I returned to Coimbra most of my friends had already finished their exams (I did all of mine in December so was free already) and after a couple of days spend lounging in cafés Annie and I decided to get out and explore the rest of the city. Turns out that Coimbra has modern neighbourhoods, with tower blocks and motorways and everything, AND that if you walk long enough you will always arrive at Dolce Vita in time for a frozen yoghurt. Magic.
We went to Lisbon again
A big group of us went to Lisbon to have another mini-holiday there. We had a pretty standard first day there, exploring the Baixa and Chiado, and then went to Bairro Alto for dinner and drinks followed by clubbing at Urban Beach.
The next day everybody was going to Belem but, having already been there quite a few times and not being keen to go back there just yet, Florence and I decided to go and sniff out some new places in the centre of the city. For us, the second day was essentially a massive walk beginning at Parque Eduardo VII and ending up back in the Baixa via Campolide, the Museu Calouste Gulbenkian, Campo Pequeno, Saldanha and Avenida. Needless to say that by the time we got back to the hostel I was absolutely knackered, and after a dinner cooked by the hostel’s Mama (check out Home Hostel, it’s really good and has a great homely feel!) I opted for a night in with Anwen while the others went out.
On the last day we got the metro all the way up to Parque das Naçōes to visit the Oceanarium. Lisbon Aquarium is one of the best I have ever been to and it’s so much fun, they have a huge tank in the middle that runs all the way through the centre of the building, as well as several other smaller things including (clearly everybody’s favourite) the sea otters! After the Oceanarium we hung around that area for a while and did loads of things I’ve never done there before, including the cable car and several extremely entertaining musical playgrounds, where they have loads of things to play with and make some pretty strange sounds… Very entertaining!
Unfortunately January marked the end of Annie and Anwen’s time in Coimbra. Their last week was filled with dinners, nights out and emotional coffee sessions but eventually it was time to say goodbye on a rainy morning in Praça de República. Luckily we will be seeing them again very soon, so it’s not a goodbye, it’s an Até já!
Also this month, our dear friend Jisong returned to Korea. We missss you! Hopefully one day we will be able to come and visit, and in the meantime, see you back in London at Christmas!
Will and I finally moved house! We had been planning the move since December: the Baixa was very picturesque but too far away and very cold! Eventually we found a new flat over facebook and moved in at the start of February. It’s only 3 minutes away from Praça de Republica (the centre of student life in Coimbra), about 60€ cheaper than our old place and is very international – we’re living with 2 Spanish girls and an Italian guy, who are all absolutely lovely. Plus it’s far warmer than our old house – we have heaters and even double glazing! I am loving living up here, it seems like absolute luxury!
And with that, ladies and gentlemen, I am off to bed. Tomorrow morning I begin my second semester at Coimbra – here’s hoping that this time round will be even better than the first few months!