A lot happened in Rome. One thing that didn't happen frequently enough was Internet access, so I'm going to try to catch up on those three days in one quick post. I had been to Rome once before (a time where I looked up the location of every single sculpture/painting/building that I had seen in Art Humanities and architecture classes and searched each one out)...so this time was a little more relaxed. Just kind of chilled out and worked on finding places to sleep each night. As quickly as possible, these were my three days in Rome:
90--Woke up in Paolo's apartment. Went to the dentist office where he works to use the computer and send out a few emergency couchsurfing requests. Say goodbye to Paolo. Go to Trevi Fountain to meet the infamous Dan Whitt, a fellow former Columbian athlete who came out to run with me for a couple days. Go with Dan to his hostel, where I met Ruby who was working at the desk. She wouldn't be staying in her apartment that night, so offered to let me stay there. Walked around the Colosseum and near the Roman Forum with Dan (but not through the forum...it has been recently fenced off and you have to pay to enter). Met Ruby and many backpackers (Australian and American) for dinner and good wine. Went to bed and slept for 10 hours.
91--Woke up and met Dan after 11. Went on first run in three months without backpack. 30 km or so down to the baths of Caracalla and up along the Tevere. Got called by Alfredo from couchsurfing who asked me to come and do a Radio interview for the station "EcoRadio." Rushed to the subway without showering to meet him. Drank two 1-Euro McDonald's chocolate shakes on the way. Arrived not really knowing what to expect. Walked quickly to the station while Alfredo informed me that the interview would be live and in Italian. "Hahaha." No, but really. Somehow did Radio interview (which I will try to put up for listening pleasure if I can get a hold of it). Went back to meet Dan. Went back with Dan to meet Alfredo. Went with Dan and Alfredo through town and then to his Apartment to get some dinner and see a pretty wicked view of the city. Dan went to hostel. I went to sleep.
92--Three month mark of my departure. Said bye to Alfredo, went back into town. Met Dan and walked to the Galleria Borghese. Paid a heavy price to see arguably the greatest statues that have ever been carved. Grinned for two hours looking up at marble that seemed beyond alive. Reassured myself of the greatness of Bernini. Walked with Dan to the Vatican. Entered what could almost be defined as my 7th country (city-state). Marvelled at the interior of St. Peter's and thought of the other people that have come here from Northern Europe on foot (Specifically from Amiens, Day 22). Also thought of the 1/3 scale replica that Matthijs pointed me to outside of Willemstad (Day 8) long long ago. Called up Tobias (a friend of Marco from Brooks) and went to his place with Dan. Spent the evening hanging out with his awesome kids and eating way too much food. Got a comfortable night of sleep for the third time in a row.
Through all of this I just kept thinking: I am in Rome...I can't believe I made it here. I've still got a long ways to go, but man am I looking forward to it.
24 August 2009