Payton Meyer

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Comparing My Semester in Florence to Friends' in Madrid and Paris

Nov 8, 2018 10:30:00 AM / by Payton Meyer

In this week's post, Payton talks about visiting her friends over fall break in Madrid and Paris, and shares what their study abroad and daily experiences are like over there compared to hers in Florence, as well what she has learned about herself thus far.

Ciao! I just got back into the swing of things after an amazing fall break spent visiting Paris, Amsterdam, and Madrid. I absolutely loved exploring, but, of course, started to miss Florence, and was ready to come home after a long week away. I stayed with friends that are also studying in Paris and Madrid, and it was really interesting to see how their experience differed from mine. Although there were a bunch of awesome things to appreciate about studying in those cities, it made me realize everything I love about CAPA and Florence, and why it’s such a perfect fit for me.

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Posted in: Florence, Italy, Study Abroad, Fall Break Abroad, Travel, Personal Learning, College Life, International Education

The Reality of Moving to a Country Where You Don't Speak the Language

Oct 19, 2018 9:44:00 AM / by Payton Meyer

In this week's post, Payton shares her initial concerns about not knowing any Italian when she moved to Florence and talks about the different ways she's begun to work on her Italian, leveraging her Ganzo! family, friendly locals, and even her past knowledge of Spanish. 

Ciao! I’m currently taking a break from studying for my Italian midterm tomorrow-- my last test before fall break!-- and I figured I’d write a bit about what my experience living in a country where English isn’t the dominant language has been like so far.

Italian is a very beautiful and interesting language, but since it’s only spoken in Italy, it’s rare to find Italian classes in American high schools. I took Spanish as my required language class, which I loved, but figured wouldn’t really do me any good when I decided to come here. When I arrived, I felt a bit rude coming into a foreign country without the ability to even say “please” or “thank you” to the locals in their own language. However, I learned very quickly that, not only is Italian relatively easy to pick up on, but that the locals are very kind and keen on helping you learn.

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Posted in: Florence, Italy, Italian Language, Language

A 3 Day Stay-cation in Florence, Italy

Oct 11, 2018 3:01:00 PM / by Payton Meyer

With the company of her visiting boyfriend, Payton spends a long weekend exploring her host city. From rooftop sunsets and a quick trip the Chianti region, to free museum day and gelato, get inspired by this perfect stay-cation itinerary!

This weekend, I was lucky enough to have a visitor in Florence! My boyfriend, Wylie, who is also studying abroad this semester in Madrid, came by for a few days to check out my new city. Staying in Florence for the weekend to show him around and enjoy the place that I’m calling home for the semester was a nice and much-needed rest from all the weekend traveling that I’ve been doing. Don’t get me wrong, I love that I am able to explore so many parts of Europe so easily while I’m here, but constant traveling can start to take a toll on your energy levels. Florence is also such an amazing place, it deserves it’s fair share of my time, too! And what better way to appreciate where you’re at than with the people that you’re closest to.

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Posted in: Activities in Florence, Food in Florence, Day Trip, Must Do, Florence, Italy

Taking an Italian Cooking Class

Oct 4, 2018 2:38:11 PM / by Payton Meyer

In this week's post, Payton signs up for a CAPA My Global City event and cooks up a delicious feast of Italian food with help from the Chefactory instructor.

Ciao! I finally got the chance to attend one of the My Global City events that CAPA offers to its students to help immerse them into the Italian culture and lifestyle here in Florence, and I can’t wait to share my experience with you! This week, I signed up for a 3-course cooking class taught at the Chefactory. My friends and I were expecting to learn how to make fresh pasta the authentic Italian way, but we learned so much more in just a few hours, and it was some of the most fun I’ve had in the city so far!

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Posted in: Florence, Italy, Food in Florence, Food in Italy, My Global City, Local Culture

Experiencing Cultural Immersion in Italy Through CAPA's 'Ganzo!' Program

Sep 28, 2018 10:07:46 AM / by Payton Meyer

In this week's post, Payton gets together with a local Italian family through CAPA's 'Ganzo!' program to help them practice their English and experience for herself what the day-to-day life of a Florence local is actually like!

Ciao! I just got back from one of my favorite experiences I’ve had in Florence thus far. CAPA offers a wonderful program called ‘Ganzo!’ which translates to ‘Cool!’ in Italian, that gives students the chance to immerse themselves in the Italian culture by meeting regularly for dinner with an Italian family. I chose to participate, as it sounded like a truly invaluable opportunity that no CAPA student should pass up. I got to meet the family that I was paired with for the first time this afternoon, and can already tell that this is going to be a life-changing experience.

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Posted in: Florence, Italy, Personal Learning, Cultural Insights, Activities in Florence

Sharing My Moments From Venice

Sep 20, 2018 12:30:00 PM / by Payton Meyer

Payton Meyer is an official CAPA blogger for fall 2018, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A Strategic Communication major at  University of Colorado Boulder, she is studying abroad in Florence this semester.

In this week's post, Payton visits Venice with her CAPA friends and shares some moments from this experience.


This past weekend, I was fortunate enough to do an overnight stay in Venice with a few friends that I’ve met here through CAPA. We attended CAPA’s My Global City advising event on Friday morning, to sign up for various volunteer activities such as English teaching or meeting with an Italian family once a week (the GANZO program), and then made our way over to the Firenze Santa Maria Novella train station around 2:30pm to catch a train into the city. The train was about 2 hours long, and had WiFi and phone chargers. About halfway through, we got an email from our Airbnb host to let us know that our place had been flooded earlier that morning, and that we were getting upgraded to stay in his bed and breakfast in Lido, just outside of Venice, instead! So, as soon as we got off the long train ride, we took a boat taxi for 30 minutes to Lido, and strolled around the less crowded, more spacious streets of the sand bar. We had a lovely seafood pasta dinner, walked around a bit, and headed back to the B&B for a little R&R before our big day in the heart of Venice.

Made it to Venice!

The smell of toast and croissants woke us up the next morning, and we enjoyed breakfast in the quaint dining room of the B&B accompanied by a family of 3 from Spain that we practiced our Spanish with. After taking a nice walk along the Lido coastline and feeling the sand between our toes, we hopped back onto the boat taxi and headed into the city.

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Posted in: Florence, Italy, Travel, Personal Learning

How I Overcame Several Travel Hiccups On My Way to Florence

Sep 13, 2018 12:30:00 PM / by Payton Meyer

Payton Meyer

Payton Meyer is an official CAPA blogger for fall 2018, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A Strategic Communication major at  University of Colorado Boulder, she is studying abroad in Florence this semester.

In this week's post, Payton recalls the obstacles she faced on her way to Florence and shares how she overcame them and arrive for orientation.


I’m finally starting to settle in to my new home here after arriving in Italy late Friday night. I’m writing this from the kitchen table in my quaint 3rd floor apartment that’s just 5 minutes from the train station, and about a 20-minute scenic walk to the CAPA Florence center. Florence is even more breathtaking than I imagined it would be, and I absolutely love my apartment and all 6 of my flatmates, but getting to this point wasn’t so easy.

Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral

I made a few little stops in both Iceland and London before arriving in Italy for the semester, resulting in me arriving very late at night, rather than during the day as CAPA had wanted us to do. The CAPA Florence staff was very understanding and helpful when I told them this, and planned to check me in the next morning, before our 10am orientation. I thought I would just take the 8:05am train from Rosano, where I stayed with my parents in a medieval countryside Airbnb, and arrive in Florence at 8:45am, at which point I would take a taxi over to CAPA and get my apartment keys so I could drop my luggage off and head back over for the CAPA orientation. My journey into Florence, however, did not go exactly as planned.

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Posted in: Florence, Italy, Arrival, Orientation

Packing Smart for a Semester in Florence

Sep 6, 2018 1:30:00 PM / by Payton Meyer

Payton Meyer

Payton Meyer is an official CAPA blogger for fall 2018, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A Strategic Communication major at  University of Colorado Boulder, she is studying abroad in Florence this semester.

In this week's post, Payton shares some packing strategies and outfits that she'll be bringing for her semester abroad in Florence.


I’m writing this the night before I depart for Florence, as I pack away the last few things I’ll need for the next 4 months using the CAPA packing list. I’ve never moved outside of my hometown, or even been to Europe, so needless to say, I’m freaking out a little. It’s been tough to figure out what to take with me and what to leave at home because, unfortunately, I can’t fit my whole life into my suitcase. Here are a few of the things that I’ve been focusing on to help me narrow down what I’m bringing along this semester.

Airport in Iceland

One of the reasons I am most excited to study abroad is to experience European fashion, as Italy is home to some of the fashion capitals of the world. I have always been passionate about fashion, but, living in Boulder, Colorado, a city that has been deemed one of the worst dressed cities in the entire United States (I’m not kidding!), makes me wonder how much I’ve truly been exposed to it. That being said, I absolutely love fashion as a form of self-expression, and can’t wait to see what people are wearing in Europe. I think it will be the perfect place to try out some pieces that I might be hesitant to wear in Boulder but will be so fun to break out abroad. I’m also saving a little room for anything new that might catch my eye in a boutique while I’m there.

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Posted in: Florence, Italy, Predeparture & Study Abroad Preparations, Study Abroad


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