Welcome to our magical weekend in Roma!
Upon landing in Rome, we immediately got a little disoriented and what should have been a 30min train ride took closer to 3 hours!
Luckily we finally found this castle, an important landmark given to us by Christina, our AirBnB host!
Because we were very late to check-in and had no phone service to notify our host, we showed up to our adorable apartment (below) but Christina was nowhere to be found.
So naturally we went to get some gelato nearby and see if we could use wifi to email her. We looked pretty scrappy after a long plane ride and with our backpacks, and therefore we were quickly identified by Christina, who was also getting some gelato while waiting for us!
Colosseum & the Roman Forum
We were completely blown away with Constantine’s Arch and the Colosseum. Constantine’s Arch reminds me how the power of one person can influence the entire world. In a matter of 100 years, thanks to Constantine, there was a religious shift. Prior to his rule, people were killed if they were Christian, and afterwards, you’d be killed if you were not Christian. Not to mention there was also a 180 day period in the Colosseum where either an animal or person was killed every 5min. In total, over 500,000 people and over one million animals died. Rome seemed a little less romantic after spending a few hours thinking about all of that bloodshed.
Luckily we then wandered off the tourist path and found a delicious pizzeria! Quickly all was well again 🙂
The Roman Forum had everything! The temple of Julius Caesar, the Temple of the Vestal Virgins and the Curia with it’s original bronze door built in 44 BC. The ruble itself was overpowering. We could only imagine what it was like before it turned to ruins!
We took someones advice to go even just 5-10mins away from the main roads to find beauty in places off the beaten path. On our strolls we found delicious gelato spots, public drinking fountains and ancient ruins that popped up in between residential apartments.
The thought that this isn’t “vacation” keeps popping to my mind, each time surprising me. It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that I won’t just be flying home next week and making a photo album of the sights we saw. Because of this I want to better understand how things work here. Small things, like understanding how Italians interact at restaurants: they flag over the cameriera (waiter) for the bill instead of waiting for them to come to you and often you pay at the front counter even if you have a waiter. Or understanding what exactly they mean we they say “Prego!” (See this article on the most versatile word in Italian.) I think it will take a little longer for the true longevity of this trip to sink in.
For now, we have one last bella giornata in Roma before heading to our next stop, Southern Campania.