05.05.2006 28 °C
That afternoon we hopped on down to Rome. The first site we got of Rome was the HUGE train station or mimi city as I see it. It has tons of grocery stores, clothing stores, banks, post offices and places to eat. So really we didnt have to leave for any reason, but since we were in Rome we didnt think it was acceptable to spend our time in the station We called a number out of our LP book and were in luck that a lady had a pension nearby for pretty cheap. We arrived at her place which was beautiful and the biggest room we have had yet, it was soo nice and clean. The best part was she owned a little dog that was super cute and playful. The best thing about spending a few days in one spot is the chance to unpack and do laundry! Laundry day is a really exciting day that I always look forward to, so we went and did that and explored the area which was a bit ghettoish so it was interesting and colorful. So another early morning we got up and headed to the train station and went off to Vatican city. We got there early enough to join a quick moving two hour line. It was ridiculous the amount of people that could be crammed into one place. I cannot imagine the tourist season, every inch near the walls of the city was taken up by people. It was in this line that we heard a young guy talking about some interesting things about the vatican in english!! So we joined the group an hour into the line. Our tour guide studied art and lived in Rome so he would take our group through the vatican muesuem briefly and then go through the Sistine Chapel and he was from Vancouver. A couple hours later we were in and moving about the city or country as I found out it actually is the worlds smallest country. They have their own troops, postal service, tv station, and radio station. The radio station gave the pope an iPod a little while that he likes to use while he walks around the gardens, we never did get a picture. And one thing very original about the country is that if you use one of the ATMs you have the language option of Latin. So we slowly moved about the mueseum which holds just too much to even begin to talk about. We stopped for a while out in the gardens to learn about Michelangelo and he painting of the Sistine Chapel. I found out that he was always a sculpter and the ceiling of the chapel was his first fresco ever!! Thats a pretty big thing. So we disected the painting on the ceiling and prepared for the big moment when we would actually see it. We made our way into the chapel and slowly made our way through the silent crowd while trying not to run into everyone. It was amazing and breathtaking just like the say and over in five minutes. Josh snuck a few bad pictures in that you will see later. They are bad quality but the fact that we got any is a good thing.
So afterwards we made our way into a huge, huge, huge church that we later found out was St Peters Bacsillica(we had ended the tour after the chapel). This place was frickin amazing, soo big I can even begin to describe the feeling of smallness you feel in here. Just for comparosion try to find people in the pictures and see how small they are compared to the buildings.
The height as well as the width is incredible, it is like a small mall with a REALLY high ceiling plus the art was awesome.
We exited through St. Peters square which is also gianormous and surronded by huge pillars, took a few pictures and left the crowd.
The parts of Rome they advertise tourists to see actually will only take some one a couple of hours to walk across so from this point on we skipped the trains and walked everywhere. So on our way home we picked up more cheesy souvineers and stopped at some churches. In Rome churches are everywhere on the streets but all are very incognito. The look like most other buildings except much older and with a different roof of course, but once you get inside the are so amazing and they litter the city. So we stopped at the Pantheon something I had learnt about at RDC and really wanted to see. The next moring we walked down to the Colosseum and Roman ruins. So smack dab in the middle of the city is a huge area filled with all of these ruins.
When we first arrived a parade was going on for the Itlian independence from communism. It was really interesting because apparently many people thought it was a good idea, communism. So we made our way into one part of the ruins and decided to find a tour. IT is nice to go at your own pace but tours are soo much better because they point out things that would otherwise be unknwon to us. We found one at the roman colosseum and he took us on a great tour of the stage for many bloodbaths. Just ask and we can tell you lots of gory details. This thing is just massive and such detail and thought went into the building as well as lots of sweat and tears.
Here Josh took a much needed yoga break on some of the ruins.
After the colosseum we met our next guide to go in to the Palantine Hills. She was by far the best tour guide ever, she was a young british girl who told only talked about all of the "naughty bits". The palantine hills were where all of the kings and richest people had their homes built during these times. One thing thhat I thought was so funny and ridiculous was that Hitler and Mussolini actually built one of their headquaters among these buildings because they thought they were doing the same thing as the Romans, building a great empire. Among the ruins was a beautiful temple built for a very special lady. Only during these times temples were never built in the memory of women. But she was so beautiful and her husband was so sad that he went to the house of congress and asked them to pass a bill allowing her memoralized. All the members of congress agreed to pass the bill because as well as the husband they to all loved her very very much, she was an extremly friendly lady. So from the end of a tour we got great pictures that will be up in a day or two. Keep in mind this area is so large that we have already been here for at least five hours up until this point. We walked among the Roman Forum ourselves because they had no tours. It was a very interesting day, I took Art History at RDC and to see things we talked about was a really nice reward, everything is better in real life!
After our exhausting tour we headed back home stopped at the station in time to witness a young girl overdosing on drugs but she turned out to be ok and was taken away by an ambulance. Yes this was the lovely neighbourhood we were staying in.