Sunday, September 5, 2010

Parting is such sweet sorrow

It is truly hard to believe that Sunday has already arrived. I had to get up this morning and face the reality of packing. This time I truly did have more than I arrived with including a tin of olive oil, some of Franco’s Limon cello and balsamic reduction, not to mention a little truffle paste. I spent at least an hour trying to cram everything back into my backpack, but soon decided to give it a break to go and get some breakfast. Most of the crowd was already down there and I enjoyed another morning of prosciutto and melon (can you tell I have a new found breakfast favorite!). Nicole and Scott were the first to depart and it was so difficult for all of us to say goodbye. They were off to Cinque Terra and then Milan before finally returning to Australia. Cheryl, Dinah and Florence were the next to leave on their way up to Florence. Suzanne and I shared a cab down to Arezzo to catch the train to Roma and Kari and Ingmar left after us. Barbara was there of course to see us off – she is such a fantastic property manager and hostess. I only hope I get to go back again!!! Our train to Roma was about 15 minutes late and we managed to get on the wrong carriage. After some navigation I finally got to my seat and settled in for the 2 ½ hour trip down to Rome. We arrived at the chaos also know as Termini about 1:30. Suzanne and I parted ways but said we would phone each other for dinner. A few short blocks later I arrived at my hotel, which has only recently opened. It is a very modern and pleasant place. I enjoy hotels with some character, but then again a nice modern hotel is a nice change. I didn’t spend long in my room before heading out. Rome is such a large city compared to where I’ve been the past 10 days, so it took a little adjusting. Most things were closed since it was Sunday, but I managed to find a little place for lunch that also had a view of the Colosseum. I enjoyed a pizza and some people watching. It is more difficult to be by myself now since I’ve had such fantastic company during the last week. After lunch I continued walking. I saw a little square that looked familiar and sure enough it was where Mom and I had dinner 2 years ago before we headed out on our cruise.

I think I have been to Rome too often when things start looking too familiar. I did go down to the Colosseum and enjoyed just sitting and looking admiring the architecture.

It doesn’t matter how many times I’m here at the Colosseum, it always amazes me.

I took a different route and went over past the Palentine and Forum and found this beautiful church. They had it open and as I walked in I realized there was a wedding ceremony going on. Somehow, they didn’t seem to mind me coming in the back to take a peek.

From there I went on exploring all the way over to the Isola (island in the middle of the river) and across to the Trastevere area.

I found my way back by the Pantheon which was encased in scaffolding - I'm so glad I have my photos from January! It wasn’t long before Suzanne called and she was at the Spanish Steps people watching. I managed to make it over there to the mob of people and find her.

We found a little place for dinner and had a prosecco and some pasta with tomato and basil sauce. I have to admit, the food we made up in Tuscany rivals any I’ve had elsewhere in Italy. After dinner we took a stroll and did some window shopping and had some gelato. Suzanne was flying back in the morning so we headed on back. I think I walked about 2 miles today around the city so I am exhausted. I was able to talk to Hunter and Mom and Dad on Skype since the connection is faster. They could all hear how much I loved my week at Torre del Tartufo. I have just two more days before coming home!!

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