September 11th, 2001 – by: Boston_Babe
Our very first glimpse of St. Peter's. We were driving around Rome lost, and I was hanging out the window snapping pics, lol!
Ok, so it wasn't the best idea to drive right into Rome
without thoroughly deciphering exactly where our hotel was. Here's the quick synopsis: Bouncing down cobblestone streets...hoping we weren't going the wrong way on one-way streets...getting stuck circling a traffic rotary with vespas shooting all around us in different directions...finally stumbling onto the main drag and looking up to see St. Peter's Basilica dead ahead at which point our jaws hit the floor in amazement. At this point, it's total chaos in the car and I realize I can't find our hotel information anywhere! So, we pull over in an illegal spot and I jump out to find a pay phone and, yes, dial my mom in NY, USA! I proceed to walk her through finding my email confirmation and finally succeed at getting the address.
After thinking that we never would get there, we finally arrive at our hotel just a few blocks from St. Peter's Basilica. Next was the struggle to park our car in an underground garage with huge cement pillars everywhere. We had to make about an 82 point turn to edge into this teeny parking space! After all was said and done, we were finally checked into our lovely hotel and already taking in the amazing sites of Rome!
I remember walking to the Coliseum when it's grandeur stopped me in my tracks. Of course I had seen it in pictures many times, but none can do the justice of seeing it with your own eyes. Walking through this massive building is surreal as you consider that it started being built around 70AD! It's grand and gruesome history is both exciting and shocking. After touring the Coliseum, don't pass up the surrounding ruins of The Roman Forum which also has a fascinating history. There are multiple beautiful arches, Basilicas and Temples. I suggest coming prepared with a guide to the ruins and Coliseum.