An Exhausting Day at The Vatican
Aug 14, 1992
Aug 26, 1992
Where I stayed
We almost missed breakfast as we rose at 9:30 AM, and had to persuade a very reluctant server that we needed nourishment. By that hour the coffee was stale and there was nothing left, so the server grudgingly gave us some hard rolls. I didn't blame her for wanting to finish up and was annoyed that we were giving a poor representation of Americans. As we were walking to the train at Piazza Barberini, we passed a place to eat and the fellow indicated that they had an American breakfast; just ask for him tomorrow. We continued to the piazza and took the Metro for a quick ride to Ottaviano Train Stop, at the time closest to the Vatican. Now the Cipro Stop is closer. Nonetheless, by the time we walked to St Peter's Square, we were very tired, but had a great time seeing St Peter's Cathedral and Michelangelo's Pieta. The Pieta had been in the USA at the Met I think, but I never saw it, so this was my first time seeing any Michelangelo Sculpture. We then headed back down the street to the entrance to The Vatican Museums, which at that time required people to climb hundreds of steps to the main floor. Through intense exhaustion, we hurried down the long hallways to the Sistine Chapel for a great view, without the hordes that I had witnessed over the years. The Last Judgment behind the alter was being restored and was covered, another disappointment.I wanted to see the Stanze di Rafaello, but they were too tired, I also was. Then back down the street to the train back to hotel, where we had an exhausting lunch at a fast food (Italian fast food) place) and then retired to our room for an afternoon nap. I had made a big mistake that day, never to be repeated. I should have had a taxi meet us at the hotel take us to the Vatican Museum entrance. Exit the Sistine Chapel at the door leading to Piazza San Pietro, and into the Cathedral. Then a taxi home. Life would been much, much easier. We were all thoroughly exhausted and the heat was intense. Also, nowadays, there is that large entrance hall with escalators taking people up to the main floor. But I did cause needless exhaustion. Live and learn. For dinner we ate a place close to the hotel at place named Pinchio on via Lavatore, a lovely place with vaulted ceilings and good food; we were treated very well there and it was air conditioned I remember. We then went back to Trevi for that great gelato. I was resolved that the next day would be a slow easy one for all of us.