6.09.2011

Ciao, Roma.

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{Palatine Hill. Cassy and I stared at this garden forever trying to figure out what kind of awesome parties were held here 2,000 years ago.}
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Palatine Hill is where all the Emperor's, and the important people lived. Legend says this is where the Lupercal is - the cave where the twin brothers Romulus and Remus were found by the she-wolf who raised them. They grew up, killed their great-uncle who had the throne, and decided to build their own city. Romulus killed Remus, and Rome became Rome.

Then you have the Roman Forum...a giant marketplace where most of the government activities took place. Kinda where Hercules knocks down all those pillars in the movie.
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Here's a good example of the city being built around ruins...we were walking along and saw this hole in the side of a beautiful building. This is what was inside:
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Totally. Real live ancient architecture. They built the place around it. If you look in deep, you can see the ruins go all the way inside under the building. My brother in law speaks a little Italian and he overheard a tour guide telling his group that most of the buildings there in Rome have ruins like these in their basements. Seriously? hey Fred, let's take our lunch break in the cellar and eat our pastrami on rye amongst the 2,000 YEAR OLD ANCIENT ARTIFACTS!! fascinating.

This is Piazza Navona:
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This was one of my favorite places. There was music everywhere, gorgeous art of the city, and crazy performers dancing to "Livin' in America". I bought a painting of this window, that now sits on my mantel next to the legos and the library books we're pretending to read.
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Vatican City:
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I didn't get many pictures of the inside of the Vatican Museum. I was too busy staring at the ceilings. The picture above is the Sistine Chapel. You weren't allowed to take pictures in the Chapel, but I snapped this one behind the gate on my way out. This place was fascinating. You walk into this incredibly crowded hall, and everyone is staring up. There are guards standing on a platform yelling "Quiet Please! No photo, no photo!" It was loud, which was sad. This a very sacred place, and it wasn't treated that way while we were there. I could have stayed forever listening to our audio tour of Michel Angelo's paintings, but my neck hurt. And I got claustrophobic. And hungry.
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{Restaurant Bistrot 23 by the Vatican. The best gnocchi I had the entire trip, and I ate a lot of gnocchi.}

Okay, this is St. Peter's Basilica:
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Can you see all the tiny people at the very tip top of the dome up there? No? That's right, you can't, because it's SO HIGH! When all the guys said "of course we're going to the top of the dome", I thought "well yeah! how cool. of course we are! We're in Rome! Why wouldn't we go to the top of that wimpy little dome?" um.....hello. Never call a dome wimpy. Especially this one.

This is inside the church:
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You go inside the dome first, where those windows are way up top. I got a little freaked out while we were watching these tiny little tourist ants at the bottom. My stomach kept doing flip flops like I was going to somehow fall through the giant mesh fence that holds you in, down into the sacred ceremony below. But I kept my cool, took some pictures, and Hooray! We went to the top of the dome! nope. we didn't. Then you take more of these tiny little turny hallways you have to squeeze through, higher and higher and higher and higher and higher, and then out you pop ON THE VERY TIP TOP OF ROME! Like, with the birds. I've never been afraid of heights before.
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Cassy and I both hung to the wall for a bit, then I finally convinced her to step to the edge so I could take a picture...hello...we're in Rome for heavens sake. No room for chicken's in Rome.
I told her she didn't have to open her eyes.
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We eventually warmed up to the edge, enough to say goodbye to Italy.
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Goodbye Italy.

5 comments:

Virginia Lindsay said...

wow! what a trip. Blue skies and you so so many beautiful great pictures. I have been to St. Peter's and Vatican City but not up to the top of the dome. It seemed SO HUGE! It's hard to understand unless you've seen it. I am totally impressed you climbed up there! Did you see the guards dressed in uniforms designed by Michelangelo? Loved those!

corrie said...

Ahhh! Let's go back! Get Cassy. I'll be there to pick you up in 4 hours.

So much fun. Such good food. I miss it.

~adelle said...

Your travel dialogue is excellent. Your pictures are so interesting too. Love it. Looks like a trip worth writing about!

Alice Wills Gold said...

Hey Cally, Love the photos, but my favorite is by far the one of you and Conan with your sisters' backsides. So precious.

I'm so entertained by people and photos, it's no wonder I never have to travel.

cupcake studio said...

Wow! It looks so beautiful! I'm enamored with the spiral staircase shot...