My trip started as I flew thirty-five thousand feet above the earth, next to a couple traveling from South Africa. they inspired me because they were accompanied by their children. The husband shared with me their journey and the path they were on during their exciting stretch toward Europe. We talked about a variety of things but what we were truly excited about was the Eternal City.
As I landed my heart grew with anticipation not just to explore the unknown of Rome, but to experience my journey with the love of my life. This adventure was meant to be a first time experience for both of us and Rome gave us all that we expected.
*** Some things you should expect while in Rome are beautiful well-preserved basilicas, great food and wine and crazy drivers. I have never been to a city where there were so many motor bikes and scooters that they almost took over the city. The local hospitality was unlike any place I had been. People were rude, impatient and arrogant. Along all the tourist places lurked aggressive street venders that developed a paranoid look out for the police because of their over aggressive sales pitch. *** I say that because you should know what to expect while in Rome.
Even though there was cultural diversity to overcome, we still managed to have the time of our life. We learned how to conquer the metro system in the first two days. Rome has so many places to see that you need to either have lots of Euro for taxis, a scooter or car, or learn how to ride the metro. We did all the above minus the taxi route. One day we probably walked five plus miles and ate our weight in pasta to keep from passing out in the heat. The pizza was unlike anything I had ever tasted and it was absolutely amazing. The pasta was made al dente with deep rich flavors that made your mouth water as you feasted along the sites of Rome. Meals were complemented by bottled water with or without gas and great wine.
Our first tour started at night where we saw the lights of Rome and visited the coliseum, Vatican cities St. Peters Basilica, Trevi Fountain, the city center, then ending the night with a dinner while watching two professional performers sing opera. The most memorable of that tour took place at the fountain where our guide explained that you should stand with your back to the fountain with a coin in the left hand and throw it over your right shoulder. One coin means you would come back to Rome, two coins means you would find love and get married, three coins would lead to divorce. My love stood with her back to the fountain and tossed her coin. I tossed my coin as she took my picture. While she took in the view I reached down in my bag and presented her a ring and asked her to spend the rest of her life with me. We were surrounded by people who let out a harmonious awwweee as she allowed me to place the ring on her finger. That made the trip worth taking. Now I have a partner for life that can join in on the adventures. I took over six-hundred pictures on this trip so the next blog will be dedicated to the Vatican City by its self.