Wed. 10 Dec. 2014 Weather:-12 Degrees/Sunny
The weather at the moment is very nice, sunny and clear but with a real nip in the air, perfect for sightseeing. Today we are off to the Spanish Steps and the Vatican and all places in between but first a nice continental breakfast at our hotel—it is all part of the deal here. I have to add that our bargain bottle of Lemoncello has found a new home, we have donated to Antionetta who makes our cafe’ latte’s first thing in the morning, I figure it is better to let her liver suffer than mine...she is a lot younger than I.
As I have mentioned before Rome is crawling with all types of police and as far as I knew there were only 5 different police forces in Italy Polizia di Stato (state troopers), Arma dei Carabinieri (ordinary police), Guardia di Finanza (financial police), Polizia Penitenziaria (??Border Patrol) and Corpo Forestale dello Stato (foresry police) but today I saw another group, dressed in jungle camoflage standing next to a jeep with “Brigade Strada Securita” (Street Security Brigade) writen on the side so I guess that if we are not safe in Rome it would be impossible to be safe anywhere. I did ask if I could take their photo or one of their jeep but as expected the answer was NO, so these other little photos were taken from a distance.
Rome is still very busy and every time you cross the road even on a pedestrian crossing you have to play chicken with everything that flies towards you, Herman now waits for the locals to venture out than tags along—he nearly has kittens when I take off by myself to take a photo from an awkward angle.
When we reached The Spanish Steps we were a bit dissapointed, they were unremarkable at this time of year. I have to admit that having seen them all dressed up in a flowery splendour on a previous trip today was a bit of a let down. The one stand out moment was that a woman was being photographed on the steps (my photo does not do her justice) and I have to say she was the most stunning woman I have ever seen in the flesh—I was almost tempted to ask her name as she must have been a model or actress.
Onward we sauntered untill we reached the River Tiber where we faced another marvelous building, this time it was the Palace of Justice (Corte di Cassazione) Rome it is the seat of the Supreme Court of Cassation and the Judicial Public Library. It was designed by the Perugia architect Guglielmo Calderini and built between 1888 and 1910, the Palace of Justice is considered one of the grandest of the new buildings which followed the proclamation of Rome as the capital city of the Kingdom of Italy. The foundation stone was laid on 14 March 1888 in the presence of Giuseppe Zanardelli, Minister of Justice and Keeper of the Great Seal, who had insisted on a prestigious location in the Prati district, where various other new court buildings were already going up. On 11 January 1911, twenty-two years after construction began, the building was officially opened in the presence of the King of Italy, Victor Emmanuel III.
A little further down the road we passed the Castle D’Angelo which is connected to the Vatican by underground tunnels, it was used as an escape route by the Popes at one time then on we marched till we saw in the distance the vast lineup to get into St Peter’s and our resolve melted—Tomorrow is another day---we will go early and Liiiiiine up.
PS There is a little indulgence here for the ladies, Enjoy...