Tagged: rome

roma: bones, playgrounds, mass, & biscotti

Saturday the 26th of February

Day 2 of Rome was full of walking around, exploring, and eating good food: the three best things to do in a new city. We visited more churches, and I got to see a good portion of Rome’s “must-see”s, including the Pantheon, La Fontana di Trevi, the Spanish Steps, and the Coliseum.

orange car & turquoise coat

But you know me. I get most excited to take pictures of the little things. Like this darling tiny orange car!

miniature boot

And the perfect miniature boot in this shop window display…

tiny silk elephant

And the tiny little silk elephant hanging from this shop’s door handle!

(ps: click any of these photos to enlarge!)

happy smile cookies

Not only did we stop by all sorts of big tourist areas, but Katie also found a few sites less frequently traveled. The Capuchin Crypt was super interesting to see while bordering on incredibly creepy… the wikipedia article explains it well, but it was basically a series of rooms decorated with the bones of old dead monks. And decorated really is the proper word… individual bones were stuck to the ceiling in artistic formations. It was absurd but really, really cool! Unfortunately no pictures were allowed inside :(

italy playground

Then we got lunch at a deli… my sandwich was hard salami with fresh mozzarella. It was such a simple sandwich but it was so perfectly delicious; that simplicity is one thing we Americans don’t understand and I’d say it’s what makes Italian food so wonderful. I also had a delightful peach juice box :)

We ate in a park near the Coliseum, and then I found a playground!

wooden number game at the playground

I loved the block with the 4 popsicles and took so many pictures of these that an Italian guy came up to me:

him: something in italian that sounded like a confused question… my guess: why are you taking a picture of this?
me: i like the ice cream! (pointing)
him: gelati? (a word i understand! because it’s an important one.) more italian

While I could get by using my Spanish knowledge to read signs and such, I can’t understand spoken Italian at all. And making conversation with Italian dudes who hang around playgrounds wasn’t high on my list of priorities. So that’s when Katie and I left the playground.

rome: yellow house with stairs

We also went to the Basilica di San Clemente, which is a basilica on top with two layers beneath it. The bottommost layer was initially a Roman house of sorts (1st century AD!) that was used by the Christians for Mass when it was illegal to practice Christianity in Rome. Going down through the layers was incredible, like stepping through time. We saw old remnants of frescoes on the walls, a small ancient water supply way, and old pottery. I can’t imagine having to go to Mass underground! And with such huge risks! I owe my religion’s survival to some amazingly brave people.

bikes & balconies

We got to go to an Italian Mass on Saturday night at a church just around the corner from Katie’s apartment. It was a tiny church; there were less than 20 people at the service, and most of them were nuns. They handed out a leaflet with all the Mass parts in Italian, so I could even read along with everything! It was a really great part of my trip; I love how the Catholic Mass never changes, no matter where I am or what language they speak there.

dessert dinner: italian pastries

Dessert dinner! We ran by a bakery on our way home and picked up way more pastries than intended (this was just my plate!). Katie made a great salad and then we had pastry sampling time. I actually saved most of these for later, it was a great show of self control on my part. Although, for all their glorious food, Italian desserts don’t hold a candle to France.. or Germany.. or Spain. That’s my vote.

excited sam and the giant egyptian playmobil

Excited Sam & the Giant Egyptian Playmobil

No explanation necessary.

It was a beautiful day in the ancient city!

buongiorno, roma!

beautiful elaborate church ceilingdomed church ceilingI suppose I’ll just introduce this nonchalantly… I’m in Rome for the weekend!

Katie, one of my best friends from high school, is studying abroad in Roma. How could I pass up this opportunity to visit? Now I get to add Italy to my growing list of places I’ve been… it’s wonderful to have that list grow. Every time I get to a new place I feel like I learn so much instantly! I witness the new culture and the language and the scene, and my brain grows in a direction it never knew existed. It’s a phenomenal feeling.

So here’s day 1 of my little trip. I flew in, successfully navigated their public transportation system (with a few delays), and then we headed out to explore her little corner of the city. There are gorgeous churches on every street, so each time we came across one we’d stop in and marvel at the architecture and the extravagant decorations. It’s simply amazing that there are so many of them and each is unique and so beautiful.

real italian cappuccino - basically the greatest thing ever

I got to have my first real Italian cappuccino, which was pretty close to heaven on earth. The coffee was so perfect and flavorful, and the foamed milk gave it just enough balance.

yarn graffiti makes an appearance in rome!

I was so excited to come across this knit graffiti in Rome! Of course, we already know how giddy I get over knit graffiti, but to see it on the other side of the ocean was pretty neat.

bead shop in rome with baubles hanging outside

inside a bead shop in rome, baubles dangling from the ceiling

We found a pretty bead shop (one of a few) and spent quite some time oohing and aahing over the beautiful & diverse assortment of handmade beads. Beads are probably my favorite thing to buy when I go to a new place. They’re small, easy to pack, they tell a story about the place, and I get a craft and an accessory out of them. So fun. I loved all the glass baubles that were hanging from the ceiling of this shop! It had a very relaxed & creative atmosphere.

colorful row of houses in rome

It seems that half of the houses in Rome are orange or yellow. I just love these colors, especially against their backdrop of perfectly blue sky. I also love all the shutters, the balconies, and all the extra little details. So many pretty things.