March 31, 2009 · filed under life

tuesday: buon viaggio

jpassport

Have I told you about our upcoming European vacation? In June we are headed to Pula, Sardinia (Italy) for six days. If you’re anything like me, you may have never heard of Sardinia before, so go ahead and check out the wikipedia page. Pula is a little beach town on the southern coast. And that is about all I know about it! I’m assuming there will be lots of wine. And pasta.

How did I get from knowing nothing about Sardinia to having plane tickets to take me there? We went out for dinner with friends one night in January (a friend my husband met in grad school plus his wife). They said, Hey, we have a free beach house for one week in Italy this summer – want to join us? We said hmmmm, we’ll have to think about that YES, oh, YES. Just one week before this I had already declared 2009 the year of the vacation, so there was absolutely no turning it down.

Then it came time to buy plane tickets. There aren’t any direct flights (obviously), so I shopped around potential layover cities like Rome, Milan, Naples, Madrid, and London. All the tickets were in the $1,200 range, and that was just for the first leg of the trip. On a whim, I looked into flying to Paris, and {insert french phrase for ‘It Was Meant To Be’ here} – tickets were only $680.

(In recent weeks I’ve seen flights to Europe dip way below that, but I am pretending not to have seen them. It’s painful.)

And that is how it came to be that at the end of our six (free) nights in Sardinia, we will shell out many Euros to stay two nights in Paris. I’ve never been to Paris. I absolutely CANNOT WAIT to go to Paris.

Today I got my passport photos taken, because I have to get a brand new passport to go with my not-so-new-anymore married name. It feels real now. I get to go to Europe for the first time ever. I need to start thinking about packing, which is really a secret code phrase for “I need to go shopping.” Please oh please, my chic and fashionable readers, what should I wear on this trip? I don’t want to look like a fanny-pack-toting American slob.


20 Comments

  1. Jen
    March 31, 2009 8:12 pm

    as long as you don’t wear Old Navy tshirts with the American flag or chunky white tennis shoes, you pretty much have free reign over there. Wear what’s comfortable to walk around in all day and pack light – then you can buy clothes over there to wear (it’s my favorite packing tip!).
    i’m jealous – have a great time!

  2. the ambitious mrs
    March 31, 2009 8:27 pm

    Well Isabel seemed to find that you should wear Crocs believe it or not!

    I can’t speak to the fashion but I’m so thrilled for you that you’re going on this trip. I’ve never been to Paris either!

  3. heidikins
    March 31, 2009 8:33 pm

    My only packing secret is to pick a color scheme and go with that. Yes, it’s a completely arbitrary way of packing…but then at least you narrow down your closet right off the bat.

    I can’t wait to hear all about it!! Squee!

    xox

  4. Renee
    March 31, 2009 11:15 pm

    I could so dislike you over this…

    Good thing I love u! 

  5. alyndabear
    April 1, 2009 12:48 am

    I’m kind of sad you won’t be coming in via London – but SUPER jealous. I never got below Florence in Rome, so I would kill to visit Sardinia. Lucky, lucky girl! :)

    Your passport photos are beautiful! I smiled in mine, got told off, had to re-take the picture and now look like a man. And let’s not even speak of my most recent Visa picture. Yick!

  6. Jackie
    April 1, 2009 5:24 am

    How exciting! I didn’t even think that I would need a new passport now that I changed my name…hmm.

    Anyway, I would check out La Petite Chic’s post about packing for Europe. I think she wore a lot of flowy skirts :)

  7. Pink Pearls & Muddy Sneakers
    April 1, 2009 6:13 am

    Ooo… I am so envious! The best advice I got was to pack sundresses & cardigans… roll up the sundresses so you can fit them in smaller spaces, so you can have room for souvenirs. Also, pick whether you are going to wear black or brown, and only pack the accessories for that color – so, if you pack a little black dress, then pack black sandals / flip flops, and make sure everything else you pack matches that, so you don’t have to pack 2 purses & 2 sets of fancy sandals & 2 sets of (etc.). love your blog!

  8. Korinna
    April 1, 2009 6:53 am

    An easy way to avoid looking like a bofo American over in Europe?–remove all comfortable, but questionable-in-appearance items (crocs, sweatpants, t-shirts, etc.) from your closet. Whatever’s left, is what you pack.

    Ach–you’re going to have a such a great time.

    Are you going to have to get a sassy new swimsuit?

  9. Liz
    April 1, 2009 8:07 am

    Oh! 2008 was my “first European adventure” and I second what someone said about sundresses and skirts. And if you plan on doing a lot of walking, comfy flats with those dresses/skirts are perfect. I unexpectedly had to run 1/2 mile in my flats and skirt one day. We would’ve missed the boat (litterally) had I been in heels or sandals. I only wore heels to dinner at night. I never wore tennis shoes. In fact I don’t even think I packed any. I only wore flipflops to the pool (beach for you)

    If you plan on visiting any churches, be sure to wear sleeves and at least knee-length skirts. Invest in a versatile, smallish purse to carry around and just take your essentials (passport, chapstick, camera, etc.). You’re going to have so much fun! Can’t wait to see the pics!

  10. Holly
    April 1, 2009 8:15 am

    Ooh, exciting. All the advice here is so good. Start reading The Sartorialist for inspiration if you don’t already.

    No sneakers, shorts, cargo pants/shorts/capri’s and jeans are even not really worn. Get some cute ballet slippers, day(read: non dressy) dresses, wedge sandals (dressy but still comfy). I like the suggestion of picking a color, brown or black, and packing around that bc I totally wear different jewelry, shoes, colors with either and it’s nice to know that other people think that way too. The simpler the clothes you pack, the more they will go with everything.

  11. Jen
    April 1, 2009 8:33 am

    Hi! I’m a new reader … love the blog!

    What to wear in Europe …
    fitted clothes, including skinny jeans.
    lots of black. cliche, but true.
    layers.
    comfy, sleek flats.

    HAVE FUN!!!

  12. Isabel
    April 1, 2009 8:52 am

    Dude…I promise you we saw CROCS all over Europe last summer. Which broke my heart since all the other times I’ve been to Europe it’s been all about the super swanky awesome shoes. Dude, CROCS?! NO!!!

    (promise me you won’t wear Crocs!)

    Seriously, it’s all about the shoes. NO tennis shoes. EVER. I’m all about all BLACK and skirts.

    Yeah, as long as you don’t walk around with a travel book and a map in your hands, you’ll fit right in.

    I CAN’T WAIT to hear all about it.

  13. Julie
    April 1, 2009 8:52 am

    Or North face…
    That says I AM AMERICAN.

    Have a great time!
    My mom is from that area in Italy if you need any inside info!

  14. rachel
    April 1, 2009 10:40 am

    How exciting!! I am going to Europe for the first time this year too. We’re going to Belgium- Brussels & Brugge in September. Italy sounds lovely!! I am looking for a good non-ugly American purse that can hold a fair amount of stuff and some Euro clothes too!

  15. Operation Pink Herring
    April 1, 2009 12:00 pm

    Dude, sometimes you have to go with the sneakers. There’s a lot of walking in Europe. I’M JUST SAYING. At least pack them, even if you don’t wear them.

    How did you get the world’s best passport photos? I bet you have a good driver’s license picture too, don’t you?

  16. Playful Professional
    April 1, 2009 5:23 pm

    That’s awesome!! I’ll be in Italy just a little bit before you and can’t wait. I think it’s the summer of European vacations!

  17. Jen
    April 1, 2009 8:13 pm

    I am soooo jealous! And $680 for flights is great! You will have an awesome time, the way you guys have been working these last couple of years, YOU DESERVE IT!!

  18. Janssen
    April 1, 2009 8:30 pm

    oooh, a European adventure. Have a lovely time.

  19. emily
    April 1, 2009 10:42 pm

    I’ve been following your blog for sometime now. I’m glad you are back into it again.

    I studied abroad in Italy and quickly learned that I will NEVER be able to keep up with the Europeans. Dress for comfort. But skirts and cardigans can work in most places. And I second the buy-clothes-when-you-get-there philosophy.

    I imagine Sardinia to be fairly rural, lots of treking about calls for comfy shoes. I think they’re known for their longevity and good Pecorino cheese. Enjoy!

  20. Heather
    April 2, 2009 4:17 am

    Banana Republic is having a great sale right now. I got black pants for $24, a dress that was originally $109 for $54, and a top for $40.