Italy bound and extremely excited…we’ve left London behind us and are well on our way to Rome! Now, I’m not sure if any of you have flown into Rome, but their airport is a clusterf*ck! After making your way to baggage claim, you’re dumbstruck at the amount of people and lack of luggage carousels. You have to find your flight on the tv…there’s about 10 tv’s clustered together…then find your carousel. There are literally 10 flights emptying their luggage on ONE carousel at any given moment. I am not kidding you when I say it was like being stuck in a mosh pit at a concert. I’m not sure who designed it to be that way, but it was bloody awful.
Thankfully, we were able to snag our luggage fairly quickly. Our next task was to find our driver. This would seem damn near impossible due to the amount of people in this area, but I literally walked right into the guy holding a sign with our name on it. THANK GOD because if I wasn’t already feeling claustrophobic in here, I was about to!
It is completely true what they say about driving in Rome; they are absolutely nuts! My mum has always been a nervous passenger, so I just told her to close her eyes until we got to our hotel. Thankfully, we made it one piece. Although we thought he was going to kill a few pedestrians. He turned into this tiny alleyway and stopped about halfway down. He said we were here and we thought he was mistaken. We got out of the car, and tucked into the facade of the old wall, there was the entrance to our hotel. It didn’t look like much from the outside, but when we walked in we were stunned. It was beautiful. If you’re ever looking for a great hotel in the heart of old Rome, Hotel Ponte Sisto is a must! They have a great terrace in the centre of the hotel that proves to be a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.
This leg of mum and dad’s trip was booked with a tour, so we would be meeting with them tomorrow to get things started. Tonight though, we set off to wander our nearby neighbourhood. We are kiddie corner to Campo de Fiori, which was in full swing with the market. After walking through the market and having our senses taken for a ride, we sat down for late lunch/early dinner. The waiters really do schmooze the women, it’s hilarious. After asking us a few questions, the waiter complimented my parents on ‘producing perfection,’ i.e. me. Ha! it gave us quite a chuckle, but very flattering nonetheless.
Like I said earlier, we didn’t get up to too much our first night in Rome. We crossed over the Ponte Sisto (a bridge), hence the name of our hotel. It’s a stones throw away from the bridge it’s named after. It spans across the river Tiber in historic Rome. We ended up finding a quaint bakery tucked into one of the alleys. We bought some canoli and gelato. Words cannot describe how good they tasted. It is like nothing we get over here in North America. I could have eaten them all damn day.
As we made our way back to the hotel, there was quite a gathering on the Ponte Sisto. We stopped to take a look. There were people lining the water way below street level. There were fires floating in the water. I managed to snap a few photos, and I heard someone murmur FireWater. I still have no idea what was going on that night. If someone knows, please tell me!
Anyway, that finished up our first day in Rome. Tomorrow our adventure would begin! I hope the group we’re traveling with will be fun. I have a feeling I’ll be the youngest in the group…haha.
Stay tuned for The Vatican…..and yes, they let ME inside!
Until next time…