THE CITY OF FOUNTAINS is one of many names used to describe Rome. Every article, blog, and person who uses this phrase to describe Rome has every right to. Every street there lays a fountain as well as a drinking spout. At first, while drinking coffee and eating a small breakfast at Campo De Flori, I was skeptical to use the spout as drinking water. If I were to see something like that in Los Angeles or San Diego, I would think they were crazy. Not only is the water shooting out from underground but it also is VERY COLD. This is especially important on hot summer days like it had been while we resided in the city for 3 days.
Walking down the narrow, sky-high apartment buildings with scooters, buses, and taxis flying by you is quite a culture shock especially when I’m use to being in an enclosed vehicle in the United States. Our first adventure was a long walk to see the Colosseo also known in the U.S.A. as the coliseum. We first saw the Mayor’s palace which is known as the Monumento a Vittorio Emanuele II. From one breath-taking view to another, it was a great place to begin my journey.
Walking besides the Colosseo I noticed a long, dreadful line or so it seemed. With tour guides as well as other solicitors telling you it would take anywhere from one to three hours to wait in line to get inside the coliseum, this seemed like an eternity. But lucky for us, we were inside the gates and past security after only 20 minutes. We were quite shocked that it only took this long. Until we realized we weren’t in the actual line quite yet. We overheard yet another solicitor stating that it would only cost 5 more euro to do the group tour instead of doing the regular admission with no tour. Doing this would also limit our wait time to 5 minutes. We decided it was well worth our money to do this instead of waiting even longer… 1 hour later after squeezing and sneaking our way into a group full of people we had our listening device to which looked very similar to a walkie -talkie. It sure didn’t take 5 minutes but that other line was a lot more crowded and more of a wait!
After yet another wait, we finally began our tour, which I would very much recommend to anyone who decides to see the Coliseum. I found out many things that I had not previously known from my memory of history class or of the famous movie, “The Gladiator.” Such as discovering that the actual coliseum use to be a lake before the brutal battles that humans and animals were engaged in.
After being on the tour, we decided to take this journey another step forward and see the Arch Of Constantine, another famous piece of structure. This led us to walk through the Palatino as well as the il Foro Romano where we got lost which was dreadful in the 90 degree heat.
This took us all of a half of a day to see. We decided it was time to embrace the Italian culture and take a one-hour nap at about two o’clock inside our apartment near by. Then we were off to the Pizza Navana, Pantheon, and Trevi Fountain where the streets and squares where filled with many people and solicitors which the most interesting one was the one with no head.. give him an A for creativity (See Below)!
Finishing off day 1 in Rome, we had a dinner filled with different kinds of spaghetti and I got to order my first legal drink. I decided for a house wine. My father topped the evening with a Gelato (one of his favorites) which led to a nice nights sleep.