A visit to Rome is too overwhelming to be consumed in only a few days. It would take weeks to appreciate the breadth and depth of the city.
Like Florence, The Golden Girls were in Rome for a holiday, not a history tour. Besides, this was my fourth visit to Rome. Instead of rushing around, we concentrated on Vatican City. A visit to the Sistine Chapel was one of the Golden Girl’s objectives for traveling to Italy.
We stayed, ate, and wandered around the Vatican City area for two days. Except for going onto the papal grounds, we were mostly away from tourists. Which translates to: ‘No one spoke English.”.
Most of the time, we were lost, wandering around aimlessly looking for a bus, a cab… the way back to the AIRBNB apartment.
Thanks to Mapquest, we were okayOK. When and if we could get online.
Over the two days, we learned that Romans are very considerate and helpful … except for the cabby who drove us to Airbnb on our first night in town. A ride that should have cost no more than 25 euros cost almost 70 euros.
OK. Give us a break. We’d just arrived by train after a full day in Cinque Terra. And it was after midnight. We were exhausted.
Hint #1: Don’t take a “gypsy cab.” Make sure there’s a meter in the car.
The friendly Romans were happy to help three struggling American females.
We met them at the bus stop when we needed directions on using the transportation systems.
They were there for us on buses to wave us off at the right stop.
Cafe owners stopped in the middle of their busy morning to advise us on getting around.
Hint #2: If you need help, ask. You will meet some charming folks.
People Watching at Vatican City
One Golden Girl wanted to see the Sistine Chapel. The vast crowds gathered in lines to visit the Chapel were enough to convince me that two visits to the Chapel were enough for a lifetime. When I learned the ceiling art had been restored and the restoration was finished, I was happy to wait in line. Seeing Michelangelo’s masterpiece in its full glory was a whole new experience.
Get Happy, Rome
What I particularly enjoyed that day at the Vatican City was watching people. While looking through my photos of Rome, I realized I had captured a contrast of “happy” and “not” with the camera. The video was fun, although I apologize to those I might have caught having the wrong moment.
Next stop: Nova Sira, Italy