Saturday, December 31, 2005
I went to Rome recently with my German cousins and it was great. Over the Christmas holiday I flew to Rome and then took a train to Germany to spend time with my family there. I spent about five days in Germany and then flew to Rome with my cousins. Germany was very nice and relaxing, but unfortunately I didn't get any good pictures.
Rome was very fun. The first day there by the time we were checked into the hotel it was dark already so we decided it would be best to wait to sightsee and just to walk around that night. We walked past many things and finally got to Piazza Navona. Our hostels clerk had told us that there were some nice pubs that way and we might run into some shopping. On the way it started to rain. So we quickly looked for the first place to duck into. We found a little pub just off the main Piazza and ordered a drink. There were not many people there, but the staff seemed friendly and we were happy to be out of the rain, so we stayed. The later it became the more people showed up. By the end of the night we were in a mix of people it was so much fun. Everyone had there primary language and then a grasp of some others. French, Italian, Arabic, German, and English all mixing together and somehow being understood. At one point I wanted to say something to the French woman I was talking to but she didn’t understand me. I turned to my cousin and spoke to him in English, he then turned to the man next to him and spoke in German, and he then turned to the French woman and told her in Italian! (Telephone) It was a great night and needless to say we didn't get up very early the next day.
The following day one of my cousins and I went on a walking tour of the ancient parts of Rome. We saw the coliseum, Constantine's gait, the Forum, Caesar’s tomb, Trevi fountain, and many more equally interesting spots. Although we left a little early because it was so cold and it started to hail. That night we just stayed around the hotel and its area resting and cursing the fatigue left over from the night before with a promise to get up early and make the most of the next day.
The last full day we woke a little late, but not too late, still with plenty of time to see many things. We decided to walk and take the metro and see as much as we could. We started out going to the Spanish Stairs, then to the Vatican. The Vatican had many things to see, but oh the people! The lines were long. To see the Sistine you had to wait in a two hour line! I wanted to see it so badly, but we agreed it would be best to try and see more of other things since time was short. We saw inside St. Peter's Basilica, the tomb of John Paul II, the place were Peter is buried and the dome of St. Peter's. It was all very interesting. We then decided to start walking back along the Tiber. Not too far along it began to rain heavily again. We all decided it was best to cut it short and go to the coliseum again to see if we could get inside. By the time we got there it was closed, but that was ok. By that point we were very tired and ready for dinner. I had to get up early the next day, but wanted to spend time with my cousins. We had drinks until late and then said goodnight to Rome.
I must not have heard the alarm because by the time I got showered and dressed I was half an hour behind schedule. I got to the train station and missed my train and had to wait another half an hour for the next one. By the time I got to the airport I had thirty five minutes until take off. When I went to the Alitalia desk they told me I was too late. After arguing I got them to give me my ticket as they said, "You have five minutes to get to gate C2, which is on the other side of the airport, you had better run." So I did. I ran and ran, through checkpoints and stopping to take my scissors. Through throngs of people. On a tram and around gates. Twenty minutes later I arrived at my gate to discover boarding was done, but the plane was still there. After some talking to a stewardess with the help of a fellow traveler, I got on the plane, the last person on the plane.
Rome was fun, but a little expensive. I want to go back again, but hopefully when the weather is nicer and with more money in my pocket. I would recommend going to anyone. Although I would also recommend that you spend at least 5 days and ideally 10-14 days to see the city and know the people a little better. Germany was great and Rome was great and it was very nice to be with family.