Rome – Day 4
1:30pm, Ponte Sublicio, Trastevere, Rome
Wow, it finally cooled down this morning (although later it got hot and humid, of course). It’s cloudy and breezy but very sticky. Definitely not a fan of Rome’s weather.
I set out to sample coffee from supposedly Rome’s best cafe, but being Sunday, it was closed. Grr. I settled on one nearby called Sant’Eustachio, also in the historic center. Apparently the NY Times has written rave reviews on this place. They automatically add sugar to your coffee so you have to specify if you don’t want any. I ordered a ‘grancappuccino’…. let’s just say the NY Times wasn’t kidding. Fabulous!
I wandered into Trastevere and checked out a few churches, though Sunday mass was in session. I recognized some of the prayers because they have the same rhythm as they do in English. There’s a lot of standing. And they say ‘amen’ like we do.
Sundays = Porta Portese flea market. It was definitely busy – so many stalls with ridiculously cheap (and repetitive) stuff. I bought a few things I really needed, like socks (def didn’t bring enough with me) and a cell phone charger. I also finally got some new sunglasses – for some reason I always have the hardest time finding a pair that doesn’t make me look hideous. I bargained down from â‚¬12 to â‚¬10, but didn’t bother on the other things I bought since they were so cheap already. I also bought a â‚¬3 DVD in Italian about guys on a beach in California – seems really bad but entertaining. I’ll give it to Andrea for her birthday.
7:05pm, La Insalata Ricca, Rome
Yeah, I’m going through veggie withdrawal. I never order salad with meals because it’s too expensive, and I don’t have a fork or cheese to use with store-bought salad, so my veggie intake has been slim to none. So that would be why I’m taking a night off from typical Italian fare and going for a huge-ass salad.
I finally found La Bocca della Verita – a lion sculpture on a wall leading into a church where they say if you put your right hand in its mouth while telling a lie, it will close on you. Riiiiight. There was a huge line to test it out, so I just took a picture and left.
And finally… I took on the Colosseum. The line’s always massive to get in, so they say to buy your ticket at the Palatine instead. I don’t understand why all those people were too dumb/lazy/ignorant to bother doing this and would rather waste an hour in line at the Colosseum. I walked all around the upper level and admired it all. Down below you can see the stage where gladiators fought, and then all the underground (‘backstage’) passageways they’d use. Really freakin’ awesome.
I then wandered around the Palatine, the site of an ancient ritzy neighborhood that’s now palace ruins. This was also really neat to see. All the ruins kind of look like brick now. The Palatine leads to the Orti Farnesiani Gardens, a nice woodsy area with a few flowers and benches – but it also provides some incredible views over the Forum and city. I could have stayed there for the rest of the day, but too many people were vying for a prime perch over the railing where I was.
(random thought) People who annoy and/or amuse me: People who…
- smoke right next to me
- open the [closed] bathroom door without knocking
- cut in line
- shove things in my face and expect me to buy/take them
- massive groups of old people tourists
Also, my right eye is really sore and feels infected. Excellent. Keeping in line with my habit of having eye problems whilst abroad.
10:15pm, Yellow Hostel, Rome
Ok, my eye is extremely red/pink and is hard to keep open without feeling sore. Ughhhhh, not what I need right now. Is this pink eye? I really can’t do anything feeling like this, so I cut my night short and am in bed, chillin’. I tried calling home but the phone kept cutting me off? Weird.
I did, however, watch the most impressive breakdancing show on Piazza Navona. It was a group of 5 teens/20-somethings doing all sorts of spinning and hopping around on hands and forearms. Seriously, I was amazed. I was actually going to leave them money, that’s how great they were, but of course all I had was a 20.