Friday, May 13, 2022

Ciao Italia!

It's been a whirlwind 24 hours in Rome!

I'm staying in the Monti region, which is within walking distance of the major sights: Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona, Pantheon. I've been to them all, along with tons of other tourists. Though I'm doing my best to use my Italian from duo lingo, when I don't answer questions like cone or cup quicky enough, people switch to Spanish. ¡Que lastima!
My guidebook is providing me some basic information, thanks Rick Steves, but a lot of context is missing so I'm heavy on photos light on history. I've signed up for a tour of the Colosseum and Forum  tomorrow so that will help.

Impressions of Rome? Um, it's ancient. And as you walk through narrow streets trying to find your way around, icons like the Trevi Fountain and Pantheon just appear when you turn the corner. It's a breathtaking surprise - though the number of souvenir shops on said streets should be a clue you're about to see something.

The streets are paved with cobblestone and narrow as they are, it doesn't stop cars, scooters and pedestrians from traveling along side by side. The driver who picked me up from the airport warned me to be mindful of the traffic, "Italians are nice people but we don't respect the rules." My strategy has been to always cross the street with other people. So far so good.

I forgot how many people smoke when you leave California. Thank goodness I'm spending most of my time outside - though that's where all the smoking happens. Without reservations, I haven't been able to eat al fresco but I have time. Food so far has been panini with prosciutto and eggplant and a Caesar salad in the land of Caesar, That and gelato... nutella? Love it. Tartuffo? Love it even more. Rich chocolate gelato with chunks of dark chocolate, a cherry and whipped cream? Yes please. Found the place that created it in 1946, Tre Scalini. The good/bad thing is it's a 20 min walk from my hotel so I won't be going every day. Or will I?

Highlights from yesterday were the Colosseum and Trevi Fountain. So far today it's been the the Victor Emmanuel Monument and Pantheon. I had to visit  the father of the Fatherland. Pictures below, history available by searching the internet. :)

It's just after 6pm as I type this and I've come back to my hotel to cool down, charge my phone, etc. However, looking out onto a plaza full of people has activated my FOMO and I'll be out the door again soon!

My goal is to blog and post photos here every few days so bookmark this page and I'll see you again! Ciao.

P.S. Please forgive the formatting issues. Doing this from my phone was not as easy as I thought!

View from the top of the Victor Emmanuel Monument

Caesar giving directions

Piazza Navona

Four rivers fountain

The Pantheon

So dramatic


Selfie with scooters

Church I popped into on the way home

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