Click on the pic below for a video of our last days in Rome and explanation below;
After checking off most of the sights on our Rome-to do list we just spent a few days wondering around, getting lost in the side streets and finishing up that list. We spent an afternoon cruising the atmospheric neighborhood of Trastevere, stopped in a few more breathtaking churches and yesterday we dropped by the Vatican. We didn’t bother going in as they had some lineups and we have been before, instead we decided to save it for the spring when we return with some friends and family.
Today has been pouring rain and is forecasted for the next few days so a good day for us gypsies to get packed up and ready to be mobile again. In the evening, we went back to Trastevere for a fundraising concert at the Basilica Santa Maria to help victims of the recent earthquakes. It was a classical requiem and more than we were expecting with an extremely talented group of people, a fantastic choir, orchestra, soprano, tenor, baritone and director- molti bravi! We got there very early thinking we needed to, too get seats as it was free with a donation which got us the added bonus of a short mass before the concert. We thoroughly enjoyed this great performance worthy of a fine concert hall but we could have done without the choir husbands running around taking photos or videos in front of us and the occasional kid screaming. The setting at Santa Maria was pretty spectacular also!
After the concert, we left the church in the evening to make our way home and hoped on the bus for the subway station. We arrived at the metro (line C) to find it closed and locked up. We were perplexed as it was only 9:30 on a Friday and we had taken it that time before. Shit, how do we get home now! We figured out a new route and walked a bit to the Metro line A and crap it was closed too! How are we getting home? We stood there perplexed, trying to figure out what to do. Just as panic was about to set in a taxi rolled up to drop someone off just in front of us, we ran trying to grab it. Luck was on our side and we hoped in for a ride home. On the way, the taxi driver confirmed what I had expected. Early that day on Italian television they were talking about ‘black Friday’ (yes, the Italians partake here also), the bad weather and metro strikes and how it was effecting people. The metro was on strike and if my language skills had been a little better I would have known to avoid travel during that period.
Prior to the concert, we had a day to just chillax and get organized again. Janet did some research and we booked a bus tickets instead of the train for Sienna when we move on tomorrow. As you can imagine moving requires some logistical research and planning for the best prices and methods but so far that preplanning has kept everything running smoothly. Together we make a great travel team, if one of us forgets something or it isn’t our forte the other picks it up. Janet is great with directions or I’d be lost and homeless without her!
We were chatting with my brother-in-law, John last night and it was funny that he asked us how’s it going living so closely, 24-7? He mentioned it must be like living in a submarine, we laughed and said ‘perfect analogy, yes at times the air gets a little thin!’. Especially with some of the stress that travel in a foreign country can produce, at times the fuses are short. We had been at a travel agent in the morning to book our bus tickets (since we don’t have a printer and my phone was acting up), she asked for our phone number and I didn’t have it with me. Janet was giving me the gears as I was trying to find it in my phone and my fuse blew. Apparently, I embarrassed her and when we were finished she stormed out of the office which made my sizzling fuse go full fireworks! We were walking down the streets, heatedly hurling some words just like the Italians do which made us really fit in except for the English! Like a ‘Donkey on the Edge!’ as Eddy Murphy has quoted!
So funny now! We got over it like we always do. The solution: more wine and it’s cheap so we figure if we stay corked we’ll be fine. If the wine runs out, look out! Or we just keep eating more pizza and more pastries so we’re too full and tired to argue. Viva la Roma!
Tomorrow we are off to Siena in the heart of Tuscany. The owner of our Airbnb has graciously offered to drive us to the bus station which saves us a whole lot of hassle and a few bucks, especially with the strike going on. He’s been so great! Click here to link to the photos.