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05.06.2011 by Andrea

My hike a couple days back was wonderful. One leg was closed so I hopped back on the train and connected to the next point. My shoulders got sunkissed and a little bit bronzed and my feet were tired. It ain’t easy walking/hiking using muscles that aren’t accustomed to being worked this hard. The highlight [besides the sweeping views]? My post-hike/pre-siesta sandwich which was delicious. Clean, fresh flavors: basil, tomato, oregano, mozzarella, prosciutto. Served on a round foccacia bread. Perfecto!

best post hike sammy ever!

Lackadaisical wanderings have ended. I’ve started my whirlwind tour through Rome. Like a kitten to a warm saucer of milk the rocking of apparently any sort of transportation is enough to lull this baby girl to sleep. Perhaps it’s also the fact that I don’t speak a word of the language [minus my quietly mumbled “excusi” or “pardon” when I can’t translate properly or am trying to get around hoards of school children]. In the tight corridors on the train I listen a bit but then can’t contribute. Lots of laughs, pointing, and shrugging of shoulders and then I nod off for the first power nap of the day.

Arrived in Rome. It was warm and beautiful. Exited the terminal and was closely following my directions without a hesitation until I got fast finger syndrome and accidentally deleted the email containing my hostel reservation and directions to their. The perils of an iPhone. Since it’s not technically “on” it didn’t show up in my deleted box. No worries I had taken a screen shot of a similar page the day before as a precaution. Must have been subconscious foreshadowing. Unfortunately for me it didn’t have a key word [right or left] for when I got outside the station and had to make a turn since straight was not an option. I inquired at an info desk, got sent away because it was for train riders only “no tourist info.” Knowing the actual tourist desk was a long hallway and two floors down I figured I could take the main street and then a connecting street would then be the one I was looking for and voila. All would be right in my world. Typical American newbie it took me a bit to realize that buildings are old enough here that they don’t use street signs they have ’em beautifully etched into the building. Two blocks down and no luck had me turning around and headed back to my docking point. Impulsively, albeit risking it being somewhat expensive, I decided to hop in a cab and eat the cost. It was only suppose to be four long blocks away. Bad idea. We turn one block down and I inquire as to the price. The driver responds “50 euro.” I counter back with “no, I can walk this.” He laughs and then says “10, then.” I say “5.” He says “you hijacker, we go back to station right now and you walk.” I reply “fine.” We circled three blocks and I got out as he flung my bag to the ground in disgust. So, I did what I should have done all along and went all the way back down the long hallway and two floors of stairs to the info desk where a nice gentleman directed me exactly how to get there. It was a snap. By the time I got up all five flights of stairs and sat down predictably realized I was hungry and grumbly. Slice of pizza to the rescue and I was back in action. I am glad my hiccup was at the train station because the rest of the day was cake. I traipsed back to Roma Centrale and hit the ground running. Saw the Colosseum, Caesars Palace, the Forum, Capitol Hill, the Pantheon, got stopped from crossing to the Trevi Fountain because apparently Hilary Clinton’s motorcade takes precedence, wandered from there to the Spanish Steps, saw the fanciest McCafe ever, and then hitched the train back and collapsed at a neighborhood trattoria. Apparently due to construction the metro lines close at 9pm right now and I didn’t want to try a bus. Giddyup, that was all done in a speedy 2.5 hours. I will state, that the enormity of the Colosseum had me awestruck. Should I be back in this city clamoring for more time to see the sites I would definitely put time and money into seeing the inside and learning more about the erecting of the structure.

Now to the eats & treats. The night prior I had pizza with marscapone, gorgonzola, and pine nuts. Last night I had homemade gnocchi, a small steak, salad, and bread. I meant to get some gelato but got caught up in conversation with other travelers and then decided a hot shower trumped finding a gelateria. That will come tomorrow as my grand finale before exiting the country. Headed to St. Peters hoping to make it to the top of the Basilica.

I closed the night sitting in an Irish pub connected to my hostel loving the people watching. There is something oddly familiar about an Irish Bar no
matter where they are located.

thanks for checking in & for all the hot tips and suggestions, they are certainly welcomed and appreciated – here’s to my next bite.

*update: I made it to the top of Basilica Dome and am now enroute to a piazza to get my well deserved sweet treat! woot!

sent from my iPhone


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