- Fizzy Thoughts: Italy Trip: Day Five

Italy Trip: Day Five

Wednesday, October 03, 2007


Our first full day in Rome. I had booked a tour of the Colosseum and the Roman Forum for my mom and me through Through Eternity, which I found online. I’ll spare you all the details from the journal and give you pictures:

Our guide was Marle, a South African who has lived in Italy for many years. She was smart and funny, and a great guide. We learned a lot about the Colosseum. For example, did you know that it was built in just 8 years? By slaves?

After our tour ended around 1:30, we headed back to Il Vittoriano (aka the wedding cake, or the typewriter) to take the elevator to the top. Do you see why?

I had heard there were great views to be had, and Marle mentioned the same thing during the tour. So we paid our 7 euros and zipped up to the top to see:

It was a clear day, so we could see all the sites…the Colosseum and the Forum, the Pantheon, Castel Sant’ Angelo, the Borghese Gardens, even the obelisk at Piazza Navona! Rome isn’t muggy like Sorrento was, but it’s still warm.

After the elevator trip we walked out the front of Il Vittoriano, and across to Palazzo Venetia, which is where Mussolini stood on the balcony to declare war on France. Then we headed back to the apartment by way of Piazza Argentina, passing more ruins along the way. And, we saw the cat sanctuary at the corner.

After relaxing with wine and beer, the four of us walked over Ponte Sixtus (a bridge over the Tiber) to Trastavere for dinner. Here's the view from the bridge:We ended up at La Scala and had good flat bread pizza and pasta. The band for this evening featured a flat sax and two accordion players. The younger accordion player was more into checking out the young women who walked by. After dinner we stopped for our daily dose of gelato, where I discovered dulce de leche is waaaaaaaay too sweet for gelato. Bleh. The small part of Trastavere that we walked through seemed full of funky young people – kind of like a college town atmosphere. The same bridge we crossed over was now full of street vendors selling fake Gucci bags and Dolce and Gabbana and bongs and beads. We noticed a little church (Santa Barbara) right down the street from our apartment that is wedged into the end of a teeny, crooked little square. It looks like one side of the church was sacrificed to another building, and the other side has been encroached upon by another building. We’ve vowed to go back one day this week to see if it really is triangular shaped inside, like it appears.

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