This week has been absolutely insane. Finals week here in the yellow villa so I've been very preoccupied and haven't had time to write!
ROMA! What a weekend.
The girls and I left Saturday morning. It was in the 70's and sunny all day - absolutely gorgeous. With weather like that, we had to stay outside so we decided to make the Colosseum and the ruins are number one priority. Well, on our way to the Colosseum we ran into a couple crazies. One man was leaning against a car, staring at us, and masturbating for the world to see in the middle of the street at 11:30 am broad daylight! Needless to say, that was a bit unnerving, and made me pretty sketched out about Rome at first. This was followed by another man who asked us to take his picture in front of the Colosseum and then said, "Now, you join me in the picture?" Um..no thank you. Lots of fast walking.
Once we were SAFE inside the Colosseum, it was incredible. What a building. What history.
This next picture is definitely one of my favorites.
I love the bride, but the two "pink men" make it for me. haha. SO Italian.
PS. We saw four brides right after each other outside the Colosseum. Don't know if they were together (it didn't appear that way) but regardless - what a beautiful day to get married!
After exploring the Colosseum for a while we went through the rest of the ruins. (Our ticket covered both areas, which was nice.)
For you, Dad. ^
The great thing about Rome is that it is completely walk-able (as is basically any European city) but I was amazed at how much ground we covered for the short amount of time that we had there.
"Love is like the summer. When it starts, you hope it lasts forever."
Next, we hit up the Pantheon and the Spanish Steps.
The most badass street musicians I've seen so far (I wanted them to have a CD SO badly but they didn't.)
Me, Emily, Elaina
The Spanish Steps are absolutely beautiful but there are street venders EVERYWHERE. Street venders in Italy sell the strangest things too - it's nothing you would ever want to buy. Sure, there are men with roses, but there are copious amounts of men with flashing devil horns, these globs of gunk that splat on the wall when you throw them and then morph back into balls, weird bubble blowing devices. The best street vender, however, was this man who came up to us with this weird noise-maker and he said, "Boom Shaka Laka" while sticking this thing in our faces and Emily said with the BEST tone of voice and the BEST expression on her face ever, "no no, non Boom Shaka Laka". Oh man. I wish I was able to recreate it for you in writing - it was hysterical. We sat in the sun for a while on the steps and then headed to the Trevi Fountain.
Man - I HATE that the Trevi fountain is such a tourist attraction because aside from the unbearable swarms of people around it, it really is a magical place. We stopped by before dinner to throw our coins in, then had dinner, and then came back. Seeing it at night is a completely different feeling. SO beautiful. I wish there would have been less of a crowd - I could have sat there all night.
Sunday. Sadly, the Vatican Museum is closed on Sundays and because the day was so gorgeous on Saturday, we didn't want to spend all day inside. Needless to say, I didn't do the museum but I did go to Vatican City.
I was greeted by these strapping young men:
How would you like to go to work every day wearing that?
All the men who are guards at the Vatican (and cantors in St. Peter's Basilica for that matter) are young, 20 something year old, good looking guys. I swear, it was like a modeling contest to see who the prettiest guard was.
Vatican City is by far one of the most overwhelmingly gorgeous places I've been in Italy. Everything about it is huge. Everything about it is pretty. Everything about it is...well..just see for yourself.
Of course, the city is also home to this little thing called St. Peter's Basilica. You walk into it and you cannot help but get teary eyed. It is BEAUTY. Manmade Beauty. How the HELL do people build something like that? Lucky for Emily and I, we were in time for mass so we attended a full hour long Catholic Mass in St. Peter's Basilica. Ahhh it was so amazing. I am not Catholic, nor do I speak enough Italian, but it was such an experience. I am so happy we got to attend mass! Being in St. Peter's - - THE place, with all the late great popes surrounding you while listening to an Italian service.
Afterwards we grabbed some food and headed on the train back to Arezzo.
Overall, it was such a wonderful weekend. We did a lot for only having a day and a half there, and despite the rocky start with all the crazies, Rome was pretty incredible.
I'll update you more on academic stuff/finals week tomorrow. As for now, it is 2:30 am and I need to get some sleep!