When in Rome

Rome Travel Blog

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Our trip began with three days in Rome.  What the guides failed to mention was just how H-O-T it would be (late-July, I guess we should have known), and many, many, many places are unairconditioned.  I sweated in places I didn't even know could sweat.  That being said (I apologize for being rather gross right off the bat), Rome is an amazing city, and our tour packed in practically everything.

We arrived in Rome mid-afternoon after an overnight flight from St. Louis.  First thing, we took off for Piazza Navona, one of the sights I was most looking forward to visiting.  We ate some lunch -- prosciutto pizza was my choice and Judy had to try tiramisu.  I must say, the food in Italy is awesome.

  Pizza, pasta, and gelato, mmm... gelato, I couldn't get enough gelato!  After we ate, we hung out in the piazza, adjusting to being in Italy.  I love fountains, and Bernini's Fountain of Four Rivers is located here; one of my favorite sculptures of Italy.  We also people-watched and were entertained by street performers of all kinds.

Day 2 in Rome started at the Colosseum.  We just walked around the exterior, and went on to the Roman Forum, remnants of ancient Rome.  We then went to Vatican City.  I am not Catholic, so I was a little dis-interested in the tour.  (My highlight: I ate gelato for the first time at lunch here).  But, I did get to see Michelangelo's Pieta.

  I had studied this sculpture in Art History in college, and I think it's a remarkable sculpture.  St. Peter's Basilica is an absolutely grandiose cathedral.  It's amazing the size of everything.  And, I know I may catch a lot of flack for this -- but seeing the Sistine Chapel was almost disappointing.  I had build it up to be this grand work of art (which is, there's no denying that); I think it may have been more the situation.  We were packed in the Chapel like cattle, elbow to elbow and it was about 110 degrees.  I couldn't enjoy the masterpiece like I wanted to. 

We had an evening visit of Trevi Fountain (spectacular), and the Spanish Steps (in the meantime, we witnessed a gypsy pickpocket a girl's backpack -- be VERY aware of pickpockets in Rome).

  I totally threw coins into the Fountain, directly following tradition.

We had one free day in Rome.  We returned to the Colisseum, to tour inside.  I was a little bored, (we spent a couple hours there, which was entirely too long), as was Judy, so we pretended to be statues which was really fun.  Leave it to us to be goofy like that! :)  We went to Piazza Navona for lunch, which turned out to be one of the highlights of the trip.  Our maitre'd was quite entertaining; he had spent time in America, New York, so that was his impression -- well, we tried to explain where we were from: rural, and I do mean rural southern Illinois.  We leisurely ate our lunch, truly experiencing Europe, and our meal was delicious.  I had a fettuccine with mushrooms, peas and ham.  We ventured over to the Pantheon after lunch, and I was awestruck.  I thought it was so much more impressive that the Colisseum. 


*We were in Rome when the second terrorist attack occurred in London.  At this point, we didn't know how it would affect our trip.  There was a possibility they would divert us to Amsterdam, but we would just have to wait and see how the next few days went.

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inside the Pantheon
inside the Pantheon
acting as a statue in the Colisseum
acting as a statue in the Colisseum
photo by: vulindlela