Saturday, August 24, 2013

Europe Trip Travel Blog #6: Rome, Italy

Rome was SO HOT! It was about 40 degrees celsius when we were there, with a crazy humidex. Over the two days we were there we spent a lot of time in our hostel because it had AC (which worked sometimes) but we still managed to tour the city and see all the things we wanted to see and a bit more.

First, we took the metro to the Spanish Steps and visited the Shelley-Keats museum, which is right by there. The museum is in the house that Keats lived in in Rome, and the house he died in. The museum is also dedicated to other writers such as the Shelleys, Byron, Wordsworth, and Wilde, but it is mainly about Percy Bysshe Shelley and John Keats.

One of the rooms has the complete works of all the others, and multiple editions of many of their books in a library, and the room also has exhibits in it.

the plaque that's up in the room Keats died in.

The museum was interesting but I didn't learn anything new. I studied those guys in school for my English degree, so I knew all the info the museum had, but it was cool seeing artifacts and old editions of the books.

After the Museum, we climbed the Spanish Steps and looked at the church, but didn't go in. At the bottom of the steps, we drank from the Barcaccia fountain, which is supposed to bring good luck. Then we went to Vatican Square.

We didn't go inside the Vatican because it was expensive, the line was long, Stephen had seen the Sistine Chapel before and I wasn't too interested in it. We just saw the outside. It was pretty weird. There are saints on all the buildings, and street vendors selling pope merch.

We hung out in our hostel until the sun went down because we needed a break from the heat.
Then we went to see the Trevi fountain. There were hundreds of people there. It was so crowded but the fountain was really beautiful. We threw our Euros in and made wishes. An Italian man showed us the proper way to do it: standing backwards and throwing the coin over your shoulder with your eyes closed.

We went to a bar near the Fountain because when we were walking by we saw a jazz trio performing. We had a great conversation with the host at the bar before he seated us. He was interested in talking to us because he was planning a trip to Canada for the fall.
Then, as we were sitting there enjoying the music, the host went up and started singing with the band. They covered an Elvis song and a Queen song in English. We noticed that the host and the guitarist looked alike so we think they were brothers. We talked to the band after the set and learned that they are called the Jet Set.
They were really good.

On our first day in Rome, I had two encounters based on my globe tattoo. The first one happened on an escalator down into a metro station. A man behind me said "Excuse me" so I moved over, but he didn't pass. When we got off the escalator he followed me and kept saying "Excuse me." We kept walking, thinking he was a peddler or beggar. He asked, "Picture or tattoo?", pointing to my shoulder. I was freaked out because he was obviously high and he was holding a cigarette and gesturing wildly and I was worried he might burn me so I kept trying to avoid him. "Tattoo," I said, and kept walking. "Tattoo?" "Yes." "Tattoo blue?" he asked. ".....yes," I said, not sure how to answer. He said "It's very nice," and I said thanks and walked away and thankfully he didn't follow me.
The second encounter was much nicer. We were outside at an ATM and an older Italian woman who was sober and spoke better English than the stoned guy came up to me and said, "Excuse me, could I make a picture of your tattoo?" I said sure. She asked me where I am from and explained that she is an avid collector of globes. She showed me her globe necklace and map ring. She took a photo of my tattoo and said, "This is a true collector's item," which was kind of creepy.

On our second day in Rome we went to the Colosseum. The best travel tip I have came from this day. The ticket to the Colosseum also gets you into the Palatino, which is Old Rome - all the ruins from when the city was originally built. The Palatino entrance is only a couple blocks from the Colosseum and there is no ticket line! We went to the Palatino, got our tickets, walked back to the Colosseum, and went right in. We walked past a line of hundreds of people who had been waiting in the sun, probably for hours. So, my tip is - if you go to the Colosseum, buy your ticket at the Palatino!
The Colosseum was amazing to see.

We then went to the Palatino, which is the ruins of Old Rome, and the Forum, and we went into the Porti Classico museum and the Romulus Temple. It was very cool to see, but it was a lot of walking and it was very hot out.

I liked these two-headed statues we saw. They usually had a female head and a male head, representing both sides of a person. This one's nose fell off.

After the Palatino we went to the Mouth of Truth. You are supposed to put your hand in the mouth and say something. If you are telling the truth nothing will happen but if you are lying, the statue will bite your hand. We thought of a paradox to say: "You will bite my hand." If you are telling the truth, it will bite your hand but it is only supposed to bite your hand if you are lying. If it doesn't bite your hand, the statement becomes a lie....
nothing happened even though I said that.

The statue is outside of a cathedral, and the church had a sign telling people in multiple languages to dress with dignity, only the English said, "Dress WHIT Dignity." If people weren't dressed with dignity, they made them wrap a kind of toilet paper gauze around themselves, which didn't strike me as too dignified. Also there was this creepy old Italian guy who was being really annoying. He would make a sound every time someone put their hand in the mouth to scare them, which got old fast but he did it every time. And if a young girl was wearing a tank top or shorts, he would "help" her wrap the toilet paper around that was creepy. We didn't go into the cathedral. 

That was the last touristy thing we did in Rome. After that we just hung out at our hostel and went out for supper.

Rome was great. It was hard to see it in two days but there was nothing else on the list we wanted to see, I just know there is so much more to see. It was super hot and really noisy and crowded, but it was awesome to see all the history.

Check out my other Europe Trip Travel Blogs:


and my packing tutorial

1 comment:

  1. We’ve been to Rome and greet the old masters of Capitoline. The city that nurtured the art of Michelangelo. We booked the Cheapest Hotels in Rome by the help of my friend who worked in a travel agency. He is a big help!