Day 18 – Rome on Foot

Wow.  After our little Twilight Stroll with Walks of Italy last night, we decided that we wanted to try to retrace our steps and take pictures of some of the things we saw on the walk.  We also decided that Rome is so full of things that interest us that we would make ourselves insane trying to get to all of them.  No kidding here.  If you have never been to Rome, you just can’t imagine what it is like to walk a few blocks and come across something of interest or historically significant or both.  We decided we really needed to limit ourselves to a small area and take our time exploring and enjoying it.

For breakfast this morning, we went back to Espressamente Illy, the place we had coffee yesterday afternoon.  I had a cappuccino and G-man had an espresso.  Here, they call espresso coffee.  He ordered a plain cornetto and I ordered the one with cream.  He should have gone with the cream one.  He got another plain one and I got one with nuts and cream.  Oh wow!  I should have gotten about 15 of the ones with nuts and cream.  Delish!

After breakfast, we spent the day walking and taking pictures and being totally overwhelmed by Rome.  Rome is packed with people just like any other big city on the planet.  The main streets have sidewalks.  The other streets may or may not have a white line painted along the outer two feet designating that space for pedestrians.  Scooters and motorcycles seem to be more popular than cars, but whatever they are driving they are battling each other for position on the road.  Yes, Roman drivers are as insane as the stereotype indicates.  The exhaust fumes are awful.  Either Italy doesn’t have any emissions laws and/or testing or the majority of the populations chooses to ignore them.  The buildings are black from the air pollution so I can just imagine what everyone’s lungs look like.  And speaking of lungs….everyone smokes.  OK, maybe not everyone.  We counted four people who weren’t smoking at the time we saw them, but three of them were in strollers and the fourth was getting a diaper change.  After having spent two weeks in a small town in Tuscany, we were dealing with extreme culture shock.

Here’s a bit of what we saw as we wandered the city.

Trajan's Column
Trajan’s Column
Columns in Trajan's Forum
Columns in Trajan’s Forum
More old columns
More old columns
Sometimes you have to build around columns
Sometimes you have to build around columns
and more columns
and more columns

This isn’t a column. It is an obelisk. But if you’re a country big on columns and you have an awesome army and you conquer another country that is big on obelisks, you can take their obelisks back to your column loving country. Italy has more obelisks than Egypt.

Egyptian obelisks
Egyptian obelisks

When you aren’t making columns, make some statues. Oh, skilled statue makers they were! The intricate detail a person can carve into stone boggles the mind.

Being a statue can be worrisome
Being a statue can be worrisome
This guy carries an obelisk on his back
This guy carries an obelisk on his back
Another statue
Another statue
Statue angst
Statue angst
Not a happy statue
Not a happy statue
Another stunning work of stone
Another stunning work of stone
Being a statue is a thankless job
Being a statue is a thankless job

Crests. Crests are very important. If you want people to remember you, slap your crest up everywhere. They, too, are fantastic stone works. What skill.

You can always tell a Pope's crest by the crossed keys
You can always tell a Pope’s crest by the crossed keys
A different Pope's crest
A different Pope’s crest
A third Pope's crest?
A third Pope’s crest?
More crossed keys
More crossed keys
Extra fancy
Extra fancy
more
more
and more
and more
Not a crest, but WOW
Not a crest, but WOW

As if all that stone beauty wasn’t enough, they do fountains, as well. Here’s a thought to ponder while you are looking at these…what did they do when they messed up? I don’t mean when they might have hit the chisel one too many times. I mean when something fell off. What’d they do??? I imagine stone isn’t a very forgiving medium.

I did NOT take this picture.  G-man did.
I did NOT take this picture. G-man did.
What is the message here?
What is the message here?
Still not sure what is going on
Still not sure what is going on
mmmmm....yeah, not sure
mmmmm….yeah, not sure

And no matter where you go, you can always find pigeons.

yeah, just hanging out
yeah, just hanging out
No respect
No respect
seriously - can you not see this horse is busy
seriously – can you not see this horse is busy
excuse me, get off my head
excuse me, get off my head
how do expect to slay something with a pigeon on your head
how do expect to slay something with a pigeon on your head

4 thoughts on “Day 18 – Rome on Foot

  1. Wonderful photos of Rome! You captured the details beautifully – I particularly like the pigeon on the statue’s toe! 🙂 Your future move to Italy sounds so exciting. We’ve lived overseas many times and I highly recommend it. Looking forward to your future adventures. All the best, Terri

  2. I like evreything about pigeons except when I’ve been the recepient of what the toe got. One could live forever in Rome and still miss things. You two have been great about not letting the big things cause you to miss the small. Glad you enjoyed Italy as much as I have. Mom

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