Roma: Part I

Oh mio dio! With everywhere I have been so far, there is no place like Rome (pun intended). Around every corner there is beauty, there is life, or the reminder of it, that just makes you feel human. Maybe its just me romanticising it, and even if I am I hope I never lose that feeling about Rome.

So where do I start on this tale of my love affair with Rome? I’m  a little at a loss for words…which is partly why it has taken me so long to post.

Let’s change things up and start with what I found annoying, since that will be short and I can get it over with; the bus system. It is SO confusing to me. The underground metro is fairly easy to figure out, but it’s not very extensive. However, once you get to know Rome, as I did on my second time there (I went back three times in about two weeks) you realize that things are not as far and complicated as it seems initially. Still, if I can I avoid the bus I will walk or take a cab. It’s not that expensive, especially if you split the fare with someone….or have your mom there to pay for it. Thanks, Mom! Umm…what else…maybe the creepy guys on the street who holla, and everything, one even tried to get me in his car. Really?!

So what do I love about Rome…everything. I met my mom there after my hectic day on the Cinque Terre, and arrived in this beautiful city feeling completely the opposite. But it was great to see my Mom after a few weeks all on my own. Then we went out to dinner and I was fed Gnocchi by a cute Egyptian waiter…life could have been worse. Not to mention as we were sitting at dinner there was a gleaming gold statue down the street that was striking against the dark night sky. I was in love.
The next day we went to the Villa Borghese, the largest public park in Rome, and rode bikes around which was hilarious since we had no idea where we were going. My mom was a good sport as we went off-roading through the grass as we found our way. We had some wine and snacks at the cafe by the Casino del Lago. The pigeons would not leave us alone. And the instant we got up they attacked our table.
Then we walked along the Tiber river to Piazza Navona, and then to the Pantheon. By that time I was completely exhausted. It was so hot and we had been going all day. And then we got on the bus going to wrong way which delayed us getting back to the hotel room by about an hour. But we finally made it and after a short nap and shower we went to dinner at a yummy place close to our hotel, Mamma Angela’s. I recommend going here if you are in Rome. They have good food, cute waiters too, and the service is much better than most of the places we ate at. After dinner you can go across the street to The Yellow, which is a hostel but they also have a good bar with reasonably priced drinks, pretty good music (and you can make requests), and travelers of ALL ages. It’s a fun spot.  And that was just the first 24 hours in Rome!
We stayed in Rome for five nights. Then we went to Tuscany, then back to Rome since my mom was flying out from there, and I stayed on two more nights. Then I went to Naples (posts on these places to follow) and then back to Rome for one night to break up the long trip to Split, Croatia via Ancona.
Below are the Rome pics minus the Vatican and Coloseum which I will post separately. Sorry, but the pics are not necessarily in chronological order and I will have to another post to get them all.

Also I am sorry that my phone cannot capture the true beauty that is Rome. Fingers crossed that my other camera has better ones.

One of three fountains in Piazza Navona
imageExterior of Convento dei Frati Cappuccini where there is the an amazing crypt. You can’t take pictures of the interior but check out the site.
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Trevi Fountain (It was impossible to get a full pic with my phone and all the people)
imageAnother fabulous pic of me…I’m thinking ˝please just take the photo now’. Right after this pic my mom got in a fight with a guy who took our picture when we said we didn’t want it and then he wanted 5 Euro. 
imageInside St. Peter in Chains Cathedral
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Moses by Michelangelo in St. Peter in Chains Cathedral
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A slightly obscure Basillica that had a unexpectedly beautiful interior. I ran across it on one of my walks.
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Interior
imageMy most favorite statue of the Virgin Mary that I have seen probably in my whole life, and not being very religious that is saying something. I find it incredibly simple and beautiful, and dare I say, comforting. Just how Mary theoretically should be portrayed, right.
imageFountain at Piazza della RepubblicaimageWalking down Via della Quattro Fontane
imageMy mom trying to stay dry from the unexpected rainstorm we encountered coming off the metro.
imageOne of the four fountains of Quattro Fontane
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imageMy favorite building in Rome… although I was told by my friend Paolo that its everyones’s favorite building so I should pick a new, smaller one. Maybe next time. This pic does not do it justice. The chariots on top are breathtaking.
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Exterior of the Pantheon  
imageFountain outside the Pantheon
imageHole in the top of the Pantheon’s roof.
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imageRandom view outside the cab window.
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