Rolling out of bed to throw on our comfy walking shoes, we hopped down the steps (7 flights I may add… Hello calves) of our new apartment and opened the door to our fabulous view of the Colosseum. Determined to undermine the saying “Rome wasn’t built in a day”, we planned to visit all the touristy areas of the historical city in just one day and boy did we succeed.
Starting at the Colosseum, we walked around its entirety and gawked at its views. Ever since I was little (yes, probably because of the Lizzie McGuire movie), I have dreamed about what it would be like to see the Colosseum in real life. I kept having to pinch myself because I was finally in Rome experiencing it firsthand. To say I was awestruck would be an understatement. Although we didn’t go in due to time and money constraints, I was like a kid in a candy store just roaming around the outskirts. After that we headed to Vittorio Emanuele which was an equally amazing sight. Built more recently than the ruins, it was a huge building with marble floors and fabulous columns. For 7 euro we made our way to the tippy top of the building which supposedly housed the most incredible views of the city… And we were not disappointed. Although experiencing a minor heart attack about how high up we were, I was so happy to make it to the top. You could see for miles on end as we took picture upon picture attempting and failing to truly capture the in-person view… Breathtaking!
Finishing up there, we headed to the Pantheon which we had already been to the night before. Not knowing much about Roman architecture I was delighted to see the hole in the ceiling which lets rain in and on certain holidays, rose petals are dropped through the roof for all who visit to admire. I yearned for a place in America that had this much culture and beauty. Our next stop was Piazza Nuvona which was a phenomenal sight however my favorite views were of the hundreds of artists that lined the square. Everywhere you looked you were surrounded by beautiful art which, combined with the sunny skies, made for a spring-like day in the middle of a normally rainy and cold winter. Next up was the Trevi Fountain! Turning a corner, you don’t even realize that you are stumbling upon one of the most famous sites in the world. Surrounded by people making wishes for love and adventure, you can’t help but feel inspired as you throw in your coins. We were told to throw 3: 1 to find your love, 1 to marry your love and 1 to return to Rome. Now I must wait patiently for them to come true! We took tons of pictures and made our way to a quaint lunch spot for some authentic Roman pizza.
After lunch we headed to the Spanish Steps which I was extremely excited about. Little did I know that all the pictures weren’t really what they were cracked up to be. Full of people and lovers caressing each other, it felt less than intimate and instead more like a zoo. We took a few pictures then we hopped on the Metro which is Rome’s version of a subway to travel to Vatican City! As we came up from the subway, I couldn’t help but feel as though we had entered India. There were thousands of Indians everywhere we turned, not to say its a bad thing but definitely a surprise considering where we were in Europe. We walked cautiously to the Vatican and entered to see a line that must have been a mile long, literally. Deciding that the trip inside wasn’t worth the 5+ hour wait, we enjoyed the views then met up with Stephen as he showed us his favorite gelato stop. We headed back to our apartment and got freshened up for apertivio at Anima Mundi, the bar whose owner helped us the day before. We celebrated our day with drinks and a fabulous appetizer buffet.
We ended our day with another cup of gelato (yes my pants are getting a little snug but, When in Rome!) and woke up Sunday to board the train back to Florence. Arriving back in our little city, I felt like we were back at home. Strange how after just a few days, the place you reside seems comforting and welcoming. Although I love the big city feel of Rome with its fabulous architecture, I am grateful to be in a city where I need no public transportation and I feel safe walking everywhere I need to go. We spent Sunday doing laundry and grocery shopping, appreciating the memories we shared over a great weekend.
Until next time I will be attending classes and exploring Firenze!