My “Day” in Rome

My body must have been experiencing some sort of jet lag because I did not wake up until 11:45(or I was just extremely tired). Whatever the reason I woke up and finished my editorial. It’s vey good and very long (check it out on earlyrisersweekly.com). I rolled out of bed and considered taking a shower before deciding that I should just take one later after I had traversed the city. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my one full day in Rome. There really is too much to see and to much for a week let alone a day, so I did what I always do; plan my day around where and what I want to eat!

In Rome there is an area of town called the Jewish Ghetto, so named, I believe, because that is where the Jews were held during WWII. In this little part of town there is a “restaurant” named Sora Margherita. I say restaurant in quotes because I believe it is too small, and the space is technically unfit, to be called a restaurant by the Italian government. Anyway, this place has the best pasta that I’ve had in Italy. Fresh made egg pasta everyday, it will blow you mind. I had fettuccine con cacio, pepe e ricotta. It was amazing. But I also had fried artichokes, known as carciofi alla giudea(which my dumb ass pronounced guido). They take an entire artichoke and simply fry it. Doesn’t sound terribly appetizing but I tell you this is one of the greatest dishes Rome has to offer! Of course I had wine with my meal…it’s Italy, what else would I do?

After lunch I decided it was finally time to go to an internet store and email my family, including Courtney and her momma, that I was safe and alive. Actually, I missed them terribly, but that is neither here nor there. Luckily when I signed onto the computer, who happened to be online but my baby herself!!! I knew I had timed it well! There were also emails from various people in my family, but the letter upon which I most focused was from Courtney. She wrote me an extraordinarily deep letter about the meaning and power of love. I always knew I loved and I’ve known for a while that she makes me feel a love that I never thought possible, but until this letter I didn’t fully grasp the depth of her feelings toward me. She really does feel the same way towards me that I feel towards her. It’s quite magical, and I cannot believe how lucky I am.

Pantheon in Sun

I went back to the apartment for a couple of minutes after using the Internet before heading towards the Coliseum. The sky had am ominous hue of gray and the wind ripped through the city; I knew that rain was coming, but I continued onward, determined to at least see the Coliseum and Forum during my short stay in Rome. Well, I got to at least see the Coliseum before it started to downpour, and I mean downpour. This was no light rain; it was a veritable hurricane in the middle of the city. It got so bad that I decided to buy an umbrella from one of those street vendors who you know is selling crap. I paid 5 dollars American for an umbrella that lasted 5 minutes and broke literally during the worst part of the storm. Instantly I was soaked and decided to head back towards the apartment, frustrated that my last day in Rome was ruined by the first rain I had ever seen in Italy (my last time here was in the middle of a heat wave). My mood durned as dour as the sky as I envisioned spending the rest of the day (it was about 4 o’clock) in my dark, depressing closet. Still, I headed there because I needed a warm shower and dry clothes above anything else.

After refreshing myself in the room for a couple of hours, I was able to plan the rest of my night. Unfortunately this time I could not plan it exactly around food because I was unsure about where I wanted to eat. I figured that I would want pizza, but where to get the best? I looked at the one guide I brought, “Let’s Go: Western Europe,” and the best it could do was to tell me at which pizzeria not to eat! It gave a good recommendation for an area near Piazza Navona, so I figured I would find a place there when I went, but first I wanted some more Internet, which I obtained and once again, thanks to some supernatural occurrence, found Courtney online! Lucky me I got to talk to my girlfriend twice today!

Trevi Fountain

I spent the rest of the nigh literally walking everywhere in Rome. I saw the Trevi Fountain earlier in the day, so I wanted to see the Forum before the sun set. Unfortunately it was either already closed or closed for upkeep as the Pantheon is. Still the walk was gorgeous and the pictures do no justice against that which I saw. The sunset was halved by low gray clouds which let the orange light peek out and cover the distant sky in an orange, pink and purple light.

Forum at Sunset

In the distance, past the clear sky, fog shrouded the horizon giving the impression of mountains off in the distance. Looking at the ancient structures of Rome I truly felt as if I had one back in time. I was walking through an area near the Forum and he Palentine Hills that was nearly void of people. It was deathly quiet with almost the seems that I was on sacred ground, invading a place reserved for the few. Still I gazed in awe at the skyline, at the horizon, at the park of the Palentine Hill stuck in the middle of the ancient cry, overlooking the Coliseum and the Forum. All around me history came to life in a city nearly as old as Western history itself. Man had created this, but it almost felt like a part of nature.

And that is exactly how the actual, modern Romans treat their city; as if the glories still existent within it are nothing more than nature. Unfortunately they have allowed many to go to ruin, vandalized others and completely neglected to maintain the upkeep of many. And yet, despite the obvious indifference by Romans, the city, in all of its dirty vandalized glory, cannot be described by any other word than magnificent.

Colosseum at Sunset

After returning to the Coliseum, I decided to head to the Spanish steps(altogether a little unimpressive). But they are in a very nice part of the city so I was able to stare longingly at clothing and fashion which I cannot afford. From there I walked to the River Tevere and crossed it to glance at the Castle of St. Angelo and then the Vatican. If only the Tevere were cleaned up it could make. Very vibrant section of the city.

Then I spent a half hour wandering about, trying to find an acceptable restaurant in the area which my guide had told me to look. I took a seat at one, but after seeing French Fries on the menu, decided to leave. I chose one at the end of Via Partione and thank God I did. The pizza(I had mine with anchovies and red onion with some arugula from my salad) was delicious, almost as good as New Haven! The salad was good(arugula with mushrooms and parmesan) and the wine was cool and refreshing. There were two Germans and two Americans sitting at the two tables closest to me and we eventually began talking. Up to this point I had been speaking to my waiters in Italian, but when the waitress tried to take my plate before I had finished, my Italian froze. I had been speaking in English with the neighboring tables and my brain could not switch so quickly. Very embarrassing that I’m still getting used to speaking the language.

Well, now I’m sitting the Piazza del Panteon, underneath a couple thousand year old structure. I’m considering heading for some more wine, but I’d rather not spend the money. Plus I have to wake up early. Maybe some gelato is in order though….

I miss my bear.

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