When In Rome...

Trip Start May 24, 2010
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13
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Trip End Jul 21, 2010


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Where I stayed

Flag of Italy  , Latium,
Monday, June 21, 2010

We arrived in Rome mid-day and quickly headed out for some sightseeing. Since we were staying close to the Colosseum and Roman Forum, we started our exploring there.  We enjoyed learning about the history of the Colosseum and acting like gladiators!  Afterwards, we explored Palatine Hill and the Roman Forum.  Kelly gave a guided tour of the forum from our guidebook and we tried to decipher what the buildings used to be.  In the evening, we explored the city by foot.  We began our adventure with a drink at the L'Antica Birreria Peroni – Creighton couldn’t wait for the German biergartens.  Then we headed towards the Trevi Fountain for a view at sunset.  Afterwards, we had a traditional Italian dinner, complete with tiramisu for dessert.  We then decided we needed to see the Trevi Fountain again at night and do the traditional tossing of coins into the fountain.  We then strolled to the Spanish Steps, stopping for roasted chestnuts along the way – a Roman tradition Creighton remembers from his work travels.

The next day, we woke up early for a full day at Vatican City.  We started with visiting the huge collection at the Vatican Museum where we explored a majority of the 4-miles of displays, including the impressive Sistine Chapel.  Creighton especially enjoyed seeing Raphael’s School of Athens which highlights classic Greek intellectuals such as Socrates and Plato and is strategically painted on a wall in the Pope’s apartment.  We also found it interesting that the reason photographs are forbidden in the Sistine Chapel was not to protect the artwork or because it is a place of worship, but rather because it was in the contract with the firm that restored the artwork.  The works were impressive but quite exhausting so we decided to take a break in the café before heading to St. Peter’s Basilica.  In the café we made the very unpleasant mistake of choosing one of the most awful drinks that either of us had tasted – San Pellegrino Chino.  We figured it was safe as we both like their mineral water.  After washing its taste out of our mouths we visited St Peter’s and left Vatican City.  On the way back we passed by the Pantheon, which was half under repair.  At this point in our trip, Creighton is starting to wonder if all of this repair work is linked to the recent economic stimuli.  After resting at the hotel, we had a dinner at Provencia di Roma.  It is a wine bar that only serves local wines and produce from the surrounding province.  We discovered a very good wine called Kantharos Rosso 2008 that we will try to get back in the States.

We started off the next morning by going to the Borghese Gallery which is located in a beautiful park that is quite a reprieve from busy Rome.  Compared to some of the other galleries we’ve visited, the Borghese contains lesser known paintings from well-known artists but has some fantastic sculptures.  The top three are, Bernini’s Apollo and Daphne, Rape of Proserpina, and David.  Creighton liked the first and Kelly liked the second.  We took a leisurely stroll back to the hotel through the Borghese Gardens, Piazza del Popola, Santa Maria del Popolo cathedral, and Rome’s "Shopping Triangle".  Luckily the only item we purchased added no weight to our backpacks -- two cappuccino’s described by our guidebook as works of art.  That evening we ventured out to a restaurant in our guidebook.  We ordered the recommended antipasti misto and a pizza to share.  We were able to see our appetizer being made and were quite disappointed in the size of the plate.  However, when they brought the appetizer, they had to pull up an extra table to fit the antipasta plate was saw plus the four additional plates.  After that, we were no longer disappointed (and quite full).
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Comments

Margaret on

Jerry and I are glad you are having such a good trip! Can't wait to hear all the stories you will have when you come back.

Mary Anne Wherry on

Too bad about that awful soda, but the rest of the food looks great. Glad you threw the penny in Trevi so you'll get back to Rome!

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