Have you missed me? I’m sorry I haven’t updated in a while, I’ve been preoccupied with life. But now, I have found a moment to stop, drop, and breathe. This post may or may not have taken a month to compose….
I thought I would recap on my trip to Rome to visit my sorority sister, Anne, and you know, explore ROMA!
So without further delay,
MY TRIP TO ROME.
Thursday night had a dramatic beginning and ending, I guess you could say. After lugging my duffel with my all day, I get to the airport, and my flight is delayed two hours. So I rushed there, breezed through security only to see my flight was delayed. While every single other flight was ONTIME!
A little peeved, I messaged Anne telling her my flight was delayed and tried to give her a new ETA. While waiting, I realized that I didn’t have some “stamp” on my boarding pass giving me the green light to board. Apparently you need it if you are not from the EU and flying RyanAir. After tracking down a RyanAir employee, she told me I had to exit through baggage, go back to check-in, go to a specific RyanAir Ticket Office, get my sign formed and go through security AGAIN. Good thing security is lax in Europe. This was a bother.
Boarding took FIVEever. As you can tell, I was already peeved with RyanAir. Luckily they didn’t weigh my suitcase though, that would have made everything slower. Nevermind the neon yellow (TACKY) and worn out navy seats of the plane, the lights were turned out for a total of 5 minutes during the night time flight, and people were just loud. Hasn’t anyone heard of airplane etiquette? There was just this constant buzz of talking. Anyways, I landed around 11 p.m. So relieved to be in Rome, I bolted from the plane and out to the arrivals in search of Anne.
Yet, I get out, and I wait, and no Anne.
AND just my luck, my phone will not connect to the wifi even though my wellbeing depended on it. I was being bombarded by taxi drivers asking if I needed a ride. After about half an hour, I started asking strangers if I could use their phone for facebook. I was instantly able to reach Anne, but she wasn’t at the airport. She missed the last train to the airport since those apparently stopped running at 10, but said something about Termini and it would cost about 50 euros to get there.
I had no idea what Termini is, but I was able to share a ride with a very petite Asian women and her Irish boyfriend who were staying at a hotel nearby the station (weird match right? but hey! love is love!)
So I got dropped off at Termini, which is basically the Grand Central Station of Rome only to realize how humungus the property was. I walked in the ticket area and it was deserted. Again, men asking me if I needed a taxi.
I crossed the street to a McDonalds in an attempt to use their wifi. It was the MOST COMPLICATED THING OF MY LIFE AND WOULD NOT WORK. I was starting to panic as 1 am loomed closer, lost in a city with essentially nothing to communicate with and a heavy bag on my shoulder. I decided to look at the premises again, and there by the adjacent bus station was ANNE. There were tears of sheer panic turned to joy when I found Anne. We then promptly hopped in a cab that had a base fair of 6 Euros. 6 EUROS. That’s like a meal- just to enter the damn taxi.
But, we are reunited, and all is well.
Anne takes me to her favorite coffee shop near her apartment in Trastevere where we have a cappuccino and a pastry. We spend the day roming Roma. First stop- The Roman Forum and Palatine, which is the site of the Roman Ruins.
After the Forum, Anne and I stopped for my first Italian pizza (and wifi) nearby before heading to the COLISEUM! ( I may have spelled that wrong….. )
Note for those who visit in the future. The line to get into the Coliseum is very very long. your ticket also gets you into the Roman Forum so buy it at the Roman Forum first which isn’t nearly as busy! It will save you lots of time so you can actually see Rome in a day!
For dinner we hit up this amazing Italian restaurant with Anne’s 5 roommates called Old Bear. I indulged in THE BEST Gnocchi! My new favorite dish! Afterwards, we were ready for a night on the town. Anne took me to an Irish pub called the Drunken Ship where all the study abroad students hung out.
Apparently, it was THE place to be because it was crowded, and it was ladies’ night. 🙂 I loved it, until the following Wednesday when my friend in my photography class who I found in Rome (at a different bar) with a busted lip and other injuries. Some Italians decided to try and mug him outside the drunken ship the night after I was there, so that’s a super scary thought.
Day of the Vatican, or should I say, the never ending museum. I thought the Vatican would be a testament to all things Catholic and the history of Catholicism. Rather, it was a series of art galleries acquired by all the Popes over the years. There were sculpture gardens, frescoes, Egyptian art, Picassos, tapestries, maps, artifacts- the galleries never seemed to end and the mammoth size of the building itself was a true architectural feat. The main gem, however, was Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel. I spent vast amounts of time staring at the ceiling. The Sistine Chapel made my audio guide worth every cent as I followed the meaning of each image. One side of the room showed the story of Moses, which I was really interested in being Jewish and all. The other were frescoes of the life of Jesus. Truly magnificent. Sadly, I didn’t get to visit the basilica because there was a long line and it started to rain.
Unfortunately, you can’t take photos inside of the Chapel, so to take part in what I am talking about, starting booking your flight to Rome now.
Notice how these days are getting shorter? That’s why I should have written this a lonnngggg time ago so everything would be nice in fresh in my mind. Anne and I went to a special Sunday market she heard about. It was pretty interesting but toward the end, all the items being sold were the same. Used clothes, new clothes, scarves, purses, fake designer purses, knick knacks, belts, socks, shoes, the likes. I succumbed to the likes of a pashmina scarf after I haggled the guy down 50 percent. He really wanted to make a deal.
All in all, my visit to Rome was spectacular. My only regret was not buying the Limoncello in the bottle the shape of Italy. Super kitchsy, but sometimes, I like that sort of stuff.