When in Rome…

Book worm book count : Well into book 8 – the Kobo is paying for itself already

When in Rome don’t do what the Romans do – sleep in!  Or at least that was what we decided when we woke up early and headed out to explore.  At 6am we had the city to ourselves.  The temperature was perfect, the streets empty, the sky a beautiful pink and the city just starting to wake up.

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It was magic.  Not necessarily from the small persons point of view but to sit and watch Fontana di Trevi without the hordes of people and to descend the Spanish Steps alone – was absolutely worth the early start.

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IMG_0262By the time we returned for breakfast at 7am, we’d soaked up a whole heap of Rome and still had time to eat breakfast at a leisurely pace before heading to the Vatican museum.

Top tip for the Vatican  – get organised and buy tickets on line a month or so in advance.  Half the price of the street hawkers and easy to do.  We had the 9am slot and literally breezed in.  Nothing better than passing the crowds facing a long wait in the ever increasing heat.

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The museum itself is overwhelming.  There is so much to see and thousands of people trying to see it – again, be organised and know what you want to see.  With Charlotte in tow we knew that a guided tour was never going to work.  We headed straight for the section that housed the Greek and Roman statues (of the Gods of course) and then made our way past the tapestries and paintings into the Sistine Chapel.   Fewer people meant less pushing and shoving and more quiet.  It also meant you could sit and take it in.  It really is amazing and even though Charlotte wasn’t impressed, I’m happy I dragged her there.  She’ll look back as an adult and realise what she was missing!

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Of course throughout the museum don’t forget to look up and down.  The floor mosaics and the ceiling art works are some of the best.  So the sulky downcast eyes at least got to take that in.

Our cunning plan was to sneak into St Peter’s Basilica through the hidden door at the rear of the Chapel.  We were pumped, tagging along to what looked like an appropriate tour group.  Only problem was the door was not signposted “tour groups only”.  It was in fact firmly shut!  Turns out that St Peter’s is closed on Wednesday’s for the Pope’s audience. Doh!  So there was no sneaking in and we’ll need to head back later.

The Vatican post office is at the very end so sending a post card with a Vatican stamp to ourselves seemed like the perfect end to a busy morning.  When we get home we’ll be reminded of the day.  Now – lunch!

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Highlights from small heights

I honestly don’t know why you listen to Mum’s posts. Name one useful thing she told you? It’s an impossible task. Also I did like the fountain thing and the should-be-called-Roman Spanish steps.  There are 122 steps by the way – now that’s useful. She’s just seeing what she thinks is happening. Not even giving poor Charlotte a chance.

As for the Vatican thingy that was super boring apart from the Greek and Roman statues, which got slightly boring after I’d seen 362 of them. And I was perfectly within my rights to be grumpy. Who wants to be dragged through countless boring rooms with people who keep on nagging you to adore them? Not me. (Also Mum spelt gods wrong. When you’re talking about any other god but God himself or any godess it has no capitals. But mum won’t let me change her stuff so she misses out on my excellent critique.

Now as Mum failed to mention we went to a pizza place last night, which had proper Italian pizza. It was absolutely delicious and it’s quite near our hotel, Boscolo. It’s Italian name translates into the white chicken. So visit it if you happen to be near.

One warning though: the chairs are uncomfortable and the pizza’s quite big.

One last thing: DO NOT ENTER THE Vatican City WITH CHILDREN.  THEY ARE HIGHLY LIKELY TO DIE OFF BOREDOM IF THEY ARE FORCED TO SPEND ANYTIME WITH A TOUR GUIDE!!!!!!!

Fun rating for the Vatican City: One out of ten. My improvement tip: Abandon hope. No sane child will ever enjoy this place.

 

 

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