photos taken with fujifilm x30
I know, I said I wasn't going to do this insane photo dumping anymore, but you know what? If people always did what they said, then a new season of Gilmore Girls wouldn't be happening. So there.
Here is the thing about Rome: it is a tourist trap. A very old, very beautiful, very impressive tourist trap I was incredibly excited to visit, but one all the same. Coming from a home state that is splashed across the background of pop culture, I'm just gonna call this one what it is. Everywhere you turn there's someone trying to make twice as many euros as they're worth off the freshest bus of tourists. The tourists who, apparently, have no idea where they are or why they're there. If I had a dollar for every time I heard "Oh honey, I could probably paint that, dontcha think?" in the Vatican, I could pay my way out of my gelato debt. (Primarily incurred at Frigidarium, thanks Hannah) Like come ON people. I don't know your life, but no, I don't think you can paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. I'm always uneasy with the commercialization of holy places, and the Vatican did nothing to assuage my anxiety. With that said, if you're visiting, I very much advise buying a "skip the line ticket". ((Don't get talked into paying for a tour though - once you're inside you're just going to lose them (and your extra 25 euros).)) It is truly stunning inside. A lot of the big tourist pulls are - they're ancient, and have seen so much history happen. It's insane what people who are truly inspired can create, and how long it will last. I suppose that's what pulls millions of people to Rome - they want to see this city that outlived its residents.
The food is exactly as good as you want it to be. Pro tip: nowhere in the free world should pizza cost you 19 dollars. Take a map and get off the main streets. In a side alley near the Trevi Foutain, I paid 2 euros a slice for massive pieces of handmade wood stove pizza made by a cute boy with pretty tattoos. Woooorth it. I also honored Ethan Kraft and ate spaghetti (if you don't get this reference you need to do better research on Rome). Rome's cafe culture wasn't as prevalent as Vienna's, but they still have these gorgeously old and classical cafes. Beware of the tables though: if you sit down anywhere in Italy, you will be charged a cover charge for the tablecloth, service, etc. It can make your quick caffeine charge a very expensive ordeal.
The highlight for me was probably singing "Hey nOW HEY NOWWWW THIS IS WHAT DREAMS ARE MADE OF" at the top of my lungs while in the middle of the crowd at the Colosseum, and having a random Italian boy join me. But because everyone knows how that movie ends, I swiftly avoided him.
Spoiler alert: Paulo is a punk.
ps. It's actually a miracle that I'm alive to write this, because Italians in general do not know how to drive, and will hit you before they bother obeying a stop light.
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