Il Mio Primo Giorno a Roma

**Guest Post by Thauna – ICSL’s Web Designer – if you have a story you would like to share, please submit it.**

If you have the opportunity to travel to Italy, GO! If you have the chance to travel with Giuliana, don’t even hesitate!! I was lucky (fortunato) to be able to take my first trip to Italy this year AND travel with Giuliana. I had the best time! The time of my life.

Prima Sera a Roma

We arrived in Rome on Festa della Liberazione (Liberation Day marks the end of the Nazi occupation in Italy during WWII) and since it fell on a Thursday most Italians were enjoying a four day weekend. Rome was more crowded than usual and our first passeggiata (evening walk) gave us a glimpse of the crowds.

Our hotel was just  a couple short blocks from the Piazza del Spagna or the Spanish Steps, which you can see where  covered with people enjoying the day. The weather was perfect.

The Spanish Steps are a set of steps in Rome, Italy, climbing a steep slope between the Piazza di Spagna at the base and Piazza Trinità dei Monti, dominated by the Trinità dei Monti church at the top. The Scalinata is the widest staircase in Europe. – Wikipedia

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Oh just a couple handsome polizia keeping the peace in the piazza. police copy

Heading out of the piazza and onto the busy street, Via del Condotti.

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I love the street signs.IMG_8349 copy

Looking back up toward the Spanish Steps…can you see all the people?IMG_8352 copy

Our vivacious leader, Guiliana all smiles welcoming us to Rome even though she just barely landed and arrived at the hotel. We gave her about 5 minutes to freshen up and then we were off on our first passeggiata (evening walk). 309921_10151600204821797_1163762400_n

Time to consult the map. We are looking for the Pantheon.IMG_8369 copy

Cool church along the way.IMG_8373 copy

This was a surreal moment I’ll never forget. Just walking down the street and then Bam! Roman history right there in the middle of the city  and you can just walk right up to it.

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It still just boggles my mind to think that this is almost 2000 years old. From Wikipedia:

The Pantheon adjective understood as “[temple consecrated] to all gods”) is a building in Rome, Italy, commissioned by Marcus Agrippa during the reign of Augustus as a temple to all the gods of ancient Rome, and rebuilt by the emperor Hadrian about 126 AD.

The building is circular with a portico of large granite Corinthian columns (eight in the first rank and two groups of four behind) under a pediment. A rectangular vestibule links the porch to the rotunda, which is under a coffered concrete dome, with a central opening (oculus) to the sky. Almost two thousand years after it was built, the Pantheon’s dome is still the world’s largest unreinforced concrete dome. The height to the oculus and the diameter of the interior circle are the same, 43.3 metres (142 ft).

It is one of the best-preserved of all Roman buildings. It has been in continuous use throughout its history, and since the 7th century, the Pantheon has been used as a Roman Catholic church dedicated to “St. Mary and the Martyrs” but informally known as “Santa Maria della Rotonda.”  The square in front of the Pantheon is called Piazza della Rotonda.

Completely amazing and I was awestruck. 969161_10151600197946797_1975655625_n

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But it was closed…(it’s ok we’ll be back)

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More fountainsIMG_8403 copy

My beautiful friend Laura.IMG_8407 copy

and now we are off to find our dinner location….heading away from the Pantheon.IMG_8419 copy

all along the way there is beauty.IMG_8427 copy

 

Practicing my Italian with the barista. He was such a good sport…and reported back to Giuliana that I have 3 grown children and one grandbaby and that he couldn’t believe I was a Nonna.Italian conversation

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We came across some sort of political goings on the side of the Parliament Building on with TV news camera, and security and lots of people.  IMG_8433 copy

The front side of the parliament buildingIMG_8438 copy

After two groups of us heading in different directions and a sprint through Roman streets we arrived at our dinner location all together.

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Dinner in Rome. Pasta was a cream sauce with black pepper and amazing. Wine was wonderful every where. I don’t know what they do to the potatoes in Italy, but they are scrumptious. And a dessert sampler….mama mia!

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**Thauna blogs about her obsession for Italy and being a beginner Italian student at myheartisitalian.com. You can also find more information on her Web Designs at Design by Thauna.

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