Tuesday, 26 July 2016

The Eternal Rome-ance - Day 7

Castel Sant` Angelo

Rome and Florence                                                                  Italy

Wednesday 23rd July 2014

I was up at a reasonable time but the first thing I had noticed was that my legs and feet seemed to feel a bit better than the previous days. Today was my last full day in Rome so I planned to make the most of it despite the slight pain in my legs and feet. I had quite a large breakfast again constantly thinking about where to see for the last time today. I wanted to quickly see everything that took four days to see in one day. Challenge accepted I thought as I made my way back to my room. My main priority was to pack my rucksack and my hand luggage in an organised state for tomorrow. I was satisfied with what I accomplished so in haste I left the hotel heading for the Colosseum. I managed to get there in good time as my feet were slightly better than yesterday and as I neared the Colosseum, I couldn’t believe the flood of Chinese tourists arriving from their coaches to admire the marvellous structure. I was overwhelmed but what was I expecting coming from an amazing unique city like Rome. I had noticed that every single day this past week I had mentioned something incredible about the sight of the arena never getting tired of seeing the wonderful Colosseum. It was very interesting just thinking how much history was in this place and how it made me feel personally standing right next to it. I moved on from the Colosseum and headed towards the side of the roman forum. As I did so I looked to my left where a group of archaeologists were discovering old marble floors and whatever treasures they could find underneath the ground level. This made me wonder what more was hiding beneath our feet that we did not know about. I decided to head up the hill to the Campidoglio bypassing the man with the budgies again to have one last moment in the Santa Maria in Aracoeli. My feet were starting to hurt that bit more so I had a sit down in the church getting lost in my thoughts with the flow of peace running through my veins. I then sat on the top step at the front of the church watching the world go by and smiling at people struggling to climb up the many stairs in front of me before I decided to go down them myself. 
Steps in front of Santa Maria in Aracoeli
Teatro di Marcello
Santa Maria in Aracoeli
I then decided to head to the beloved Pantheon and by the time I arrived there, it was dinner time. As I was trying to save money, I decided to have a panino which for the price I paid was a very delicious bite to eat and it was enough to help me continue my trips. I sat in the Pantheon staring at the altar and the ceilings as I kept thinking of my Grandmother who passed away which helped me relax and be at peace not having a care what was going on around me. I knew I wasn’t far from the Castel Sant’ Angelo and Vatican City so they were my next locations. I was soon there with joy but sadness too as I knew this was my last day seeing this breathtaking area. The castle was still a wonder to be amongst and I decided to look at it from every angle. Around the sides of the castle walls were stalls selling all sorts of gifts and books but hardly anyone around to buy them. It was nice and quiet going around the castle as I admired its size but it got quite loud when I returned back at the front as I approached Vatican City. 
Love Padlocks on Ponte Sant` Angelo
Castel Sant` Angelo
Behind Castel Sant` Angelo
Castel Sant` Angelo
Julius Ceasar Statue
Behind Castel Sant` Angelo
There were no words to describe the feeling I got when I was approaching the large square in front of the basilica of St Peters. There were so many people at its centre so I decided to sit at the edge where the large pillars stood tall and rest my tired legs. I sat at the perfect spot where I could see the large dome at the top and also witness the very large line of people waiting to get into the church itself. I had a wonderful moment sitting there making the most of it watching on at the pigeons scattered across the square before I eventually stood up and continued on to my next destination. On the way though I had a thought that I was in Italy and I never had a Cornetto. So I went into the first shop I came across and bought myself one. I was tempted to start singing the Cornetto song but I think I would have been arrested for disturbing the peace. 
Piazza San Pietro
Just One Cornetto
Palazzo di Guistizia
I wanted to see the Piazza del Popollo for the last time so that was where I headed to next. It took quite a bit of time to arrive mainly because I was paying more attention to the street performers along the way. As I got there I realised I never went along the steps next to the Leonardo da Vinci museum. I knew the pathway at the top would lead straight to the Trinita dei Monti. 
Piazza del Popolo
Unhappy Street Performer
As I reached the top, I could see another brilliant view of the city and seen how far I had walked since this morning; no wonder my legs were tired. Time passed and I eventually arrived at the Spanish steps with hundreds of people sitting on them getting there pictures taken and relaxing with their families. I didn’t spend much time there mainly because I really needed the toilet. I headed down the steps and arrived at the Piazza di Spagna looking for a toilet. I found one but it was a 1 Euro charge to use them. I didn’t have it on me and they didn’t give change so I was running out of options then I headed towards the metro to see if they had any. On the way there, I was startled when a group of Indian sellers suddenly grabbed everything from the floor they were selling and ran off into the metro station. I was wondering what was going on and actually thought they were running away from me but as I looked over my shoulder, the roman police were tailing them as they did not have a license to sell. I thought it was funny the way they suddenly ran off wrapping everything they had in a large dusty rug. I eventually found some toilets but I had to go into McDonalds. As I entered I was shocked with how many people were in there having a McDonalds. I was just thinking that they have a McDonalds at home; why would they come all the way here to have it? I headed back out relieved and took my time looking through the windows of the expensive shops. I couldn’t believe it when I had seen full suits and dresses for 3000-4000 Euros. I was watching some people coming out of the shops and I was just thinking rich arses strutting away actually wishing I was one of them rich arses. I had other things to think of though so I headed down the long Via del Corso which took me straight to Emmanuelle II monument. I looked upon it for a moment before heading to the Mercati di Traiano and all the way back to the Colosseum. I sat for a long while at the Colosseum once again as I knew I would not see it again on this journey.
Time moved on and I could feel burning on my neck because of the sun which made me pick myself up and endue the long walk back to the hotel. I had one last look at the Colosseum before disappearing around the corner and heading to the hotel. The last location I seen was the Terme di Caracalla. I looked upon it thinking about the opera performance I seen the second night I was here. It seemed like a lifetime ago since I watched the performance but still remembering the wonderful feeling I got when I was listening to it. I could see the hotel in my sights and was exhausted by the time I got into my room. I made sure that everything was in place for tomorrows’ departure and then I took a nice long shower which felt great before relaxing on my bed watching the Italian TV holding memories of what I had seen for the last time today.
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