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Dear Luke and Leia,
Am I really in Rome for two days? Wake up Dan, you're dreaming, you can’t finally be in Rome. It must be a dream, a fantasy … all because it's your birthday and you’ve always wanted to go to Rome. Well, I guess it's true, I'm spending two days in Rome for my birthday! It was a great plan coming together, because after Nana got to visit Paris, now I get to see Rome.
Where to start in such a glorious city? Way too many sites have been unfairly distributed to this one place. I think we should begin with the Colosseum. What a magnificent structure it is, and it is still standing after two thousand years. This is a building of legends.
The Roman Colosseum is an amphitheater built by Emperor Vespasian around A.D. 70-72.It was known as the Flavian Amphitheater when Vespasian’s son Titus finally opened it just 8 years later. The government hosted games here as entertainment for the public. For them, gladiatorial combats, wild animal fights, and even torture were all entertainment.
The colosseum originally had a wooden floor, but all the once-hidden passageways and chambers are exposed. After four centuries of games, it was neglected until the 18th century, when they began to restore the damage it had endured over the centuries from fires and earthquakes. Now the Colosseum is an iconic symbol of Rome and a Bucket List item for tourists like me.
Rome which was built on seven hills, and Palatine Hill is the center-most hill of all. Being the center of Imperial Rome, Palatine Hill houses great attractions like Circus Maximus, the Colosseum, and the Roman Forum. The hill is tied to Roman mythology because it is believed that the twins Romulus and Remus were found in the Lupercal Cave by their wolf mother.
Walking around Rome
Walking around Rome is easy, but crowded during our visit. Rather than fight traffic we took the Hop-on Hop-off bus tour which gave us a good overview and made getting from site to site far easier. It didn't take long to admit that we need to plan more time in Rome as there is so much to see. We had so little time during this trip, but two days are better than none, right?
The Pantheon was originally built in 27-25 AD to commemorate the victory of Actium over Antony and Cleopatra. It was a functioning temple with statues of various Roman gods filling the niches. Animals were sacrificed and burned in the center; the smoke escaped through the oculus above, the temple's only means of light. Now the Pantheon is a Basilica, whose dome was studied by Michelangelo before starting his work on the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica.
The Fontana di Trevi, Trevi Fountain in English, is the largest Baroque fountain in the city and the most beautiful in the world. There is a tradition that if visitors throw a coin into the fountain, they are ensured a return to Rome. Hmmm … I wonder what throwing 40 euro coins would do for a return visit?
A few people in Rome
As always, we find a great deal of enjoyment in watching the various tourists and the antics they display while posing for pictures. We also just like to observe people as they enjoy the scenes. Here are a few characters in action:
We hope you guys enjoyed our trip to Rome. Luke, you would love the gelato and yes Leia, there is plenty of pasta here even for you! Got to run and catch a train to our next destination.
Nana and Pap