Postcard 2 from Italy
June 1, 2018
Bella and Easton slept in while the rest of us had breakfast at the hotel. Once everyone was up, we walked over to St. Peter’s to see if we could get in. The line was about a quarter mile long, so we revised our plans and headed over to the Spanish Steps. The steps were built in 1723 by Francesco de Sanctis to connect the Piazza di Spagna and Piazza Trinita de Monti. We walked down to Via Condotti, which is the Rodeo drive of Rome. Layne was so excited; she said it was like a museum for fashion. It was there that Steve and I met Federico. He has family that lives in Oceanside, CA and visits the US every two years. He told us about his restaurant, Bernini’s smiling elephant hidden behind the Pantheon, Villa Borghese, the best gelato shop, and other points of interest that are not typical tourist traps. He told us the restaurants in the area where we were staying use microwaves to reheat food and this is NOT authentic Italian food. We headed back to the hotel to gather our luggage and head over to the Air BnB which was close to Campo de Fiori, an open air market. We met the leasing agent, got our giant skeleton key, and settled into our rooms. Steve explored the upstairs which had low ceilings and beams, only to hit his head and render him with a possible concussion. It left him with a giant egg on the top of his head and a rather large bruise. No more going upstairs for him!
We walked to a restaurant recommended by Gianluca, our Uber driver and then walked to Piazza Navona. Here there are three famous fountains, two small ones, and a large one in the center. The center fountain is called the Fountain of the Four Rivers. The two smaller ones, I named Four Men Blowing Water out Of Conical Tubes, with a large man in the center of them wrestling a dolphin spouting water. Next, we turned the corner to see this majestic Pantheon, which was a former Roman temple, now a church, built about 126AD. It was awe inspiring. To think you are standing in a building of such rich history, entirely made by hand, that is thousands of years old, is absolutely amazing. There is so much history everywhere you look. Our next stop was for Bella, so we headed to the Brandy Melville store. She was in her element, so happy. By this time I thought I was done. I haven’t done this much walking with my new hip yet. But, I forged on to see the spectacular Trevi Fountain along with thousands of other foreign visitors. Steve got the best photos, thanks to his height. Now, I was really done, so we Ubered back to the apartment. We got the same Uber driver we had in the morning, who was not happy with his ignorant American passengers. Almost 14,000 steps today. Yeah me!