Rain or storm, come what may, we were going. No matter what.
Naturally, about a million things came up. We started building our house 3 weeks prior to leaving. We were about 2 weeks away from finishing our house on North Church and the list goes on and on. As stressful as it was to plan our lives around this trip, we did it anyways. And it was so worth it. We spent two wonderful weeks in gorgeous Italy.
I won't bore you with a super long post about the entire trip, so instead I'm going to break it down into a few different posts.
First stop, Rome.
Rome was definitely my favorite. It was shockingly gorgeous! Everywhere we looked there was just building after building of beauty. The architecture was so different. Obviously, these streets were built before cars were imagined, so they are all incredibly narrow and not necessarily fit for cars. Oh, but they drove on them anyways. Romans don't seem to yield to any traffic signs or signals. It's pretty much just "go anywhere at anytime in any form of vehicle." We found this to be a common thread throughout Italy. Luckily, we were only in cars a handful of times throughout the trip, so no major panic attacks happened.
First touristy stop was the Roman Forum. The Roman Forum is a must see. The ruins were so vast and interesting. I would highly recommend paying to get a tour through the Roman Forum, Palentine Hill and the Colosseum. It is definitely worth the money because of the vast amount of information they provide.
These two shots are of the Roman Forum from atop Palentine Hill. The view was fantastic. You could go down into the Forum and walk around- it was super interesting to see all of the old buildings and churches.
The Colosseum might have been my favorite part. Our tour guide gave us so much information about the games that went on inside. It was so interesting. The Colosseum is so large and neat-- you can really visualize yourself there while one of the games is going on.
We had to kind of hunt this one out. This is the Mamertine Prison. This is where Paul and Peter were imprisoned.
Our first night in Italy I ordered a coffee. And they brought out this little guy.... after drinking it , I realized it was a shot of espresso. Lesson learned, I guess. This restaurant was an authentic Italian place across the River in Traverse.
This is the inside of St. Peters Basilica. This is definitely another must see. It was SO HUGE and beautiful. The artwork and architecture itself is gorgeous.
You can pay 8 euro and "take the elevator" to the top of the dome. I put "take the elevator" in quotations because after you get off of the elevator there are about 300 additional steps. It is very tight quarters and very odd, but definitely worth it. The view is outstanding. The above picture is from the top of the dome looking out into Vatican City.
Fun fact: The official language of Vatican City is Latin.
Another part of this tour was the Sistine Chapel, however, you can not take any pictures inside. Bummer.
While in Rome, David wanted to see the aquaducts. We both thought it was such a neat system of how they transported water. It was such a huge construction and they were all over Rome, so we found one place called Aquaduct Park that supposedly had a lot of them. We kept asking around about how to get there and where to go and everyone seemed kind of confused when we asked. Apparently it is not much of a tourist area. Once we got there we kind of saw why.. we were very impressed with the aquaducts themselves, but this park was pretty much located in the middle of nowhere and I can imagine the only people who go there are drugdealers and kids wanting to make out. Either way, we made the trek and enjoyed seeing them.
Fun facts about Rome/Italy:
* Most people speak English- I really thought there would be much more of a language barrier.
* Water is not free in restaurants- its actually more expensive than just about anything else. You can pretty much get a glass of wine for the same price and you can get a pitcher of water. However, Rome has water fountains everywhere, so carrying and refilling a water bottle became very important.
*Italians have like a million courses of food and in very strange orders.
* Most hotels we went to had a physical key instead of a key card.
* Alot of people dont take credit or debit cards because "their machine is broken" or "they dont have good internet service"but the truth is that they just dont wanna pay the taxes on it so they just accept cash.
Those were some quick highlights of our four days in Rome. Next we head to Naples, Pompei and Capri.