Thursday, May 5, 2011

Arrivderci, Roma!

We spent our last day in Rome today. We got a late start (again, not my fault! This is amazing!) and headed over to the Vatican. One of the ladies at the B&B told us it was an easy 20-minute walk. It took us a little more than an hour.

When we arrived in Rome on Monday, we had online tickets for the Vatican Museums. We were too late, however, to use them. Not only that, but we were told that the Vatican was shut down for the Beatification Mass for John Paul II. Today we took our tickets in and asked if we could use them, explaining that, if they were closed, the date should not have been available on the online system. "We were open," we were told. "What about the Beatification?" I asked. "We were open. You couldn't go to St. Peter's, but the Museums were open." They honored our tickets, anyway, and, in we went.

Suffice it to say that...It was just too much. Too much stuff. I'm not kidding. These popes stuffed literally every crack and crevice with paintings, carvings,




etc, etc, etc. It is just not possible to take it all in in a day; we saw only 3 galleries and were too overwhelmed by it all.
And I checked something off my life list. I have always wanted to see the Sistine Chapel. I waited 52 years to do this...and I was disappointed. Can you believe it? One of the world's magnificent pieces of art, and we stood there, saying, "Oh." I felt irreverent thinking so, but, after walking through all those galleries, our brains and eyes were just overstuffed and couldn't take it in. And don't say, "Maybe you should have gone there first." There was no way to do so. They shuffle you through those galleries. It's the only way. And guess what? When you leave, you have to walk back all through all those galleries. There's a door right there in the Sistine, leading to the outside, but you can't use it. Not only that, but, despite the signs demanding "respect and quiet," and no photography, it was loud with talking, moving, running, and flashes were going off so much it looked like paparazzi had joined us.

One other thing did not get checked off of my life list. Seems no one else wanted to stand in line to go inside St.Peter's Basilica, so we headed back to the hotel. Ah, well. (I feel a little like Martin Luther, who left Rome, after visiting, somewhat disappointed...)

Tonight we are in Florence. We have gone from a quiet B&B in a convent to a noisy student street in a small city. But we had an awesome dinner tonight; mine was penne with a gorgonzola sauce, followed by Scallopini Florentine (tomato sauce, spinach and light, fluffy veal), followed by chocolate ice cream They call it gelato, and say, "You call it ice cream," but they do something different with it here. It's heavenly!

Tomorrow we've decided to rest our muscles that are tired and sore from 3 days of touristing, get some laundry done, and probably visit an art gallery. I think I'll also get some pictures posted; I finally have my laptop again!

1 comment:

  1. The art is beautiful but I think I'm more excited about the food you have eaten. I hope you are enjoying your trip as much as you hoped you would!