Friends, Romans, countrymen,…Lend Me Your Ears


What a day in Roma.   Quite sure we took 30,000 steps and 10,000 of them were retraces, doublebacks and around in circles.   We are tired and our feet are sore.  It was raining too.


We started off looking for the Pantheon.   With maps apps, a paper map and no idea where we were, we crisscrossed our own route so many times that it was deja vous all over again.  And in the rain.  With umbrellas over head.  At one point we were so desperate, we asked a female soldier carrying an uzi for directions.  Oh, what a day.  

By accident we found ourselves at waters edge at the Trivola fountain.  Just stumbled upon it.  Turning a 12 minute walk into an hour takes some special sort of genius.  When we return, perhaps we will apply for a Menza membership.   9A032BC9-3196-4C67-BF05-56B09F88C4E7

I personally asked about a hundred people for directions because things are not marked very well.  And because sometimes we could not understand the directions.  And because people assumed we knew things we didn’t.   A confluence of confusion.  

We finally found the Pantheon. An enormous example of architecture built way back when. How did they do it?  If it were explained to us, we would as confused as we were with directions.  Just sayin.


After we viewed the Pantheon, we headed to the Vatican because we had prepaid tickets for tour and an audio tour.  We bought a 3 day pass for public transport and off we went on the bus and then the metro.  Emerging from the abyss of the very efficient Metro, we ambled toward the Vatican Museo.  The entirety of Roman visitors were there.  Massive lines.  People working there were very helpful and thru ignorance on our part coupled with our aged looks, we were able to advance our cause of visitation.  

5C968196-867F-43FF-B04C-B5F1F36FB386The Vatican was too much. A museum on steroids.  It reminded me of a rugby match with us advancing from scrum to scrum.  Really people, there are too many statues of dead people.  And the tapestries would put any video game or teenage boy movie to shame.  Daggers and blood.  Men, men, men everywhere except for an occasional Virgin Mary ( which I regard as a myth).  


If a fire should break out, we all would have been trampled to death.  Safety was not a concern except for the strict rule of no videos or pictures in the Sistine chapel lest the flashes destroy the ceiling art. They treated that safely, I suppose it could be said.  

God, we were glad when it was over and we were grateful that the day was cool with rain because it was very hot in some places.  A man at dinner tonight (from Holland) said that if a person stopped to listen  to the tape at every designated place, it would take 21/2 years to complete the tour.  It was by all accounts overwhelming.  

After we escaped the place, we just wanted to get back to our hotel and that was not to be.  We went back down to the Metro  but unbeknownst to us, we went the wrong direction.  The end of the line for the wrong direction shared the same name as our station so that when we emerged, nothing looked remotely familiar.   Rayman could hardly walk.  He barely slept on our flight over and he wasn’t at the top of his game.  Really, I was the navigator all day.  So we decided to get some espresso and ducked into a joint to refresh and regroup.   We asked the woman barista where we were in relation to where we wanted to be.   She had no idea even though we had a map.  Finally Rayman overheard a woman speaking English so he rushed her before she could escape. We were so far afield that our map didn’t include our present location.  She set us straight and by the time we left the shop, we were laughing and Rayman even hugged the barista…he was so excited.  We then walked back to the Metro we had left and rode back to our station and found our hotel.

We cleaned up and went to dinner and had a great meal, met and visited with a family from Holland, and walked back to our hotel and here I am blogging. 

Quite an adventure for our first full day in Rome.  

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