With all of the wonderful punny Rome titles (Rome around the world, When in Rome, Rome if you want to, etc.), I couldn’t just settle on one. So instead, I’ll settle for my favorite place in Rome, and quite possibly my favorite place ever: the Trevi Fountain. There, I said it. And I’m sure you’re all judging me for being a stereotype because the Trevi Fountain is “so cliche”. But I remember falling in love with the fountain when I was in eight grade…probably right around the time Lizzie McGuire was tossing her very own coin and becoming an international pop star (sadly, my coin was not quite as powerful). Tossing a coin in the fountain isn’t just tossing a coin and making a wish, though. If you toss one coin in the fountain, it means you will return to Rome, two coins means you will return and fall in love, three coins means you will return, fall in love, and get married. I remember standing in front of the fountain and tossing my coin, hoping one day I’d be back. And guess what! My wish came true. (Or that one, anyway).
We got to Rome around lunchtime on Friday, and after settling down in our hostel and grabbing a bite to eat we began to check out the sites. Here’s a tip to anyone going to Rome for around three days…the Roma Pass. I fell in love with this little fellow and all of its perks. What perks, you ask? The pass cost us about 34 euros. With the pass, we got free access to all public transportation (busses and the metro system), discounted admission fees to museums, and the admission to our first two museums/attractions was free. If you’re still not convinced, an unlimited metro pass for three days is 17 euros, and most museums and attractions are at least a 10 euro entrance fee. Basically, I was really jazzed about the Roma Pass. The Colosseum was our first stop (where we got in free thanks to our Roma Pass..too much talk about the pass?), and even though I’ve been to Rome before, I don’t think I’ve ever actually been in the Colosseum. And I have to say, my level of excitement about the outside of the Colosseum was equally matched by my level of excitement about the inside. They’re both amazing. And I couldn’t help but find myself thinking about everything that had taken place in the arena before me. I also met a cat, so. That’s always a winning day for me.
|My new best friend that was a little afraid of me and may or may not have had rabies..
And even though it was raining, and by raining I mean pouring, we still had a great time and our umbrellas only added more color to a dreary day.
After the Colosseum and walking around a bit more we finally made it to the Trevi Fountain. And once we rounded the corner, I definitely channeled my inner Anna Grace Hall and shed a few tears upon seeing the fountain again (to understand this reference, check this blog out http://annagracehall.blogspot.com.es/2014/01/dude-wheres-my-luggage.html ) I also may or may not have returned to the fountain two more times while we were in Rome (for a grand total of three times). Also, unlike many things in Rome, looking at the fountain is free- minus the coins you throw in. Maybe that’s why I like it so much.
|Our walk to the gallery
Saturday morning we started off with the Borghese gallery and gardens, where I once again made new friends.
Very important sidenote: Shoutout to my dad for finding that awesome and slightly sketchy tour guide to take us around Rome when I was younger and get us into the Vatican before it opened to the public. Because Grace and I had both seen the Sistine Chapel (which is definitely a must), we headed back to the fountain while the rest of our group headed off to the Vatican City.
Sundays in Rome. Ah. What an interesting Sunday it was. For starters, everyone (and I mean everyone) is in Rome on Sundays in the Vatican City. Which is exactly where we were headed on the metro when I got pick-pocketed. It seems so surreal to be saying that for two reasons. One, getting pick-pocketed is something that I think most people think will never actually happen to them. And two, I had my bag wrapped around my shoulder and I was holding it when someone took my wallet. Luckily, there was a man, we quickly named him Italian Batman, who saw the whole thing happen and got my wallet back for me.
So, if you’re traveling in Rome watch out for crowds, particularly on the metro. Because Sunday is such a busy day, Rome is particularly crowded. Watch out for people you wouldn’t normally suspect..for example small children or a group of teenage girls. And don’t be afraid to be rude. That might seem like odd advice..but if I’d been trying to be a little less polite I probably would have turned around to rudely glare at the teenage girl behind me (who was the one who stole my wallet), quite possibly scaring her off. All I can say is, thank goodness for Italian Batman.
After all of the excitement we went to hear the Pope speak..which I think I greatly needed at that point. By that point, it was pouring rain again..so there was basically just a sea of umbrellas. The Pope sent us off with a blessing and we headed back to Siena. It was strange getting off the bus in Siena..I felt like I could actually breathe again. Rome is beautiful and full of rich history..but after spending a weekend there I realized how happy I was that I chose to study in Siena..a place where I feel safe and comfortable.
Oh, you didn’t think I’d forget my fountain pictures, did you?
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<p><span style="color: rgb(29, 29, 29); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: normal; background-color: rgb(237, 237, 237);">Hi there! My name is Natalie Clark and I go to college in Spartanburg, South Carolina. I'm an English major with Creative Writing and Gender Studies concentrations. While I love my hometown in Arkansas, I've also gotten really into traveling since starting college (as one would assume, considering the fact that I'm studying abroad) and I can't wait to explore while I'm in Italy...okay, okay...and eat a lot of pasta.</span></p>