When in Rome...
Trip Start Sep 28, 2009
21Trip End Oct 23, 2009
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Our first day took us to our our 6th nation in Europe: the Vatican City. St. Peter's Square and Basilica were everything and (spiritually) more than we had imagined and as we entered the sacred doors, we were awe-inspired by all that the building had to offer.
The majestic St. Peter's Basilica held much to humble us. Michaelangelo’s Pieta, the dome designed by Michaelangelo, the impressive alter, the beautiful frescoes on the ceiling and, most importantly, the spirituality of the entire place took hold of us and those around us. We were unable to find time to visit with the Pope, but his presence was felt as we toured the Vatican Museum (a 15 min walk around the Vatican walls) which included Egyptian and Roman antiquities, modern pieces from artists such as Dali and special religious pieces (his Holiness’s rings, etc.) from Popes of the past
We even found time at the end of the day to catch the first half of the Bronco's game, a win (we later found out, since we're 8 hours ahead of Denver) over the Patriots.
Today, we enjoyed breakfast on la Dolce Vita’s famed Via Veneto, just a short walk from Piazza Barberini where our hotel room looked down upon the Fontana del Tritone, a famous fountain of Tritan the merman taking flowing water from a conch shell.
Our second day in Rome took us to the ancient center, the site of the Roman Empire. Our walk to the Colosseum was flanked on both sides by ancient ruins of the Romans. Here we are reminded of Julius Caesar, Augustus, and movie characters such as Ben Hur and Gladiator. Scattered about these archaeological sites are picturesque shambles of columns, marble blocks all which were once arches, noble palaces, temples, staircases, etc., many of which still hold graphic detail of those times… really an outstanding way to visualize scenes from the past. The Colosseum, itself, is just that: colossal. What an amazing structure. We were reminded of the stories of the bloody spectacles involving the massacre of thousands of wild beasts, or fights between gladiators as 80,000 people cheered on
So much to take in and experience at such a historical site. We continue to wander the city finding other hidden treasures: fountains, statues, old streets, more tourists, and quiet piazzas with cafes. It is here that we rest our tired legs and fill our stomachs with tasty local food and drink.
Disclaimer (one we should have posted much earlier in the trip): we apologize for any spelling errors, grammatical errors, lack of detailed captions or missing historical dates and names. With so much to see and do on this great adventure, and with only 24 hours in a day, we often find ourselves rushing though these blogs, trying to keep them light, yet informative, so we can head back out and enjoy or get packed up and move on to our next destination... So, more details to follow, as we look forward to seeing you all back home to share stories. We're headed back, north, now to the Portifino region, to enjoy the coastline.