Rome is home, home is Rome. Dawn is gone. Gone is..POPE!?
This is the first week that Rome has felt a bit more like home. Everything is still different, and I still feel like a foreigner, but I have become familiar with the places and things of the locals. I’m almost proficient in public transportation, I’ve peace-d all the nonne\grandmothers at Mass in Italian, I’ve experimented with new produce, and discovered home-ier spots (not that famous, ancient ruins and monuments aren’t homey..), including a pet shop and my new favorite bakery just down the block (pic below). But it’s been a lot of days and I need to go to bed soon as it is 11:16pm here now and I need to wake up at 5:00am for my train to Florence for the weekend with some friends. So I’ll go day by day for now, and I will probably go back and expand on some things (bold things) in later posts…(you can tell me what you want me to expand on if you have questions).
Saturday: historical tour, then relaxed at the apartment organizing my things and doing nothing. My roommates and apartment-mates and I went to the grocery store nearby and grabbed ingredients for bruschetta and pesto pasta.
Sunday: awake at 8:45 to walk to an outdoor market with my good friend Gina. We finally found the exact spot where the market was supposed to be…turns out we were given the wrong address for this infamous market. We ended up circling the Pantheon from all sides. By the way, you should see the street signs here. For some reason, Italians wanted to make driving as difficult as possible, so their street signs are stone engravings in the sides of buildings in non-uniform areas of the walls. Drivers often park, get out of their cars to look for the street name, and then resume driving. We ended up walking until 1, when we ate at the same ristorante pizzeria from last week’s dinner – Ristorante Vittorio or something like that. I got salmon\tomato pasta and Gina ordered ravioli (which definitely was not an American portion size). We split steamed artichoke, which the Italians do very well. There’s a pic of the tropical trees of Italy and the rowers who frequent the Tiber.
We came back around 2ish and then resumed our walking an hour later when we toured a Dante’s Inferno art exhibit of Auguste Rodin’s sketches based on the literature. I snapped a pic of his sketch of dancers. The exhibit’s location was the coolest part – it was at the Spanish embassy, which had a beautiful Church with cool doors where Sara and I were married (sorry, boys. Also that is not my underwear it’s a sweet shirt my dad gave me), and it also gave us our first hilltop view of Rome around sunset. I counted over 30 churchtops before I gave up. We hung out at a small piazza and played with the confetti from the festival, Carnivale, like Halloween\Mardi gras\masquerade, which was held over the past 2 weekends. Only thing Carnevale-ish that I saw that morning were 2 kids – one dressed as Hermione, the other as Spiderman.
On our way back, it was just me, Sara, and Gina. As we’re walking back to our apartment, Sara asks us in her Italian accent, “Guys, do you want to go to the best bakery nearby?” We’ve been walking all day, so we hesitate. Then Sara looks at us, nodding her head, “Guys, you say YES.” We took forever to decide on what to get, but I ended up with a yellow cream-filled fried pastry with another ricotta-cream filled shortbread circle. YUM. Then we stopped at a pet store and played with baby bunnies for a half hours as we ate our treats. It was the best afternoon ever. Then I headed off to my first Italian mass!
Sorry, I gotta go to bed…here are the pics and I’ll edit this and resume in a few days. Mi dispiace!
No pictures today in honor of Pope Benedict’s resignation and the Vatican being struck by lightning (just kidding, that’s not why).
YUM RESTAURANTS. Just kidding, I made it and decided to fool you all with my amazing food skills. You can never have too much olive oil.
Captions: typical Roman car garage, lenten lunch, got lost somewhere beautiful on the river, the tunnel that I hate to take, a panorama of everyone watching the Ash Wednesday papal mass on the big screen TVs in San Pietro, broccoli romanesco raw, and the finished Roman dish!
Thursday pics – Valentine’s day in the city of love
fountain of youth, a restaurant in the Jewish ghetto YUM, friends and their food, and a bunch of Valentine’s day snipes on the street 🙂