Sunday, June 29, 2014

Colours of Rome

If Rome is going to seduce me (and honestly, the verdict is still out), it will be through its colours. I have some serious reservations about its apparently perennial obsession with power, blatantly manifest in its architecture. Nor am I pleased by its disregard for pedestrian approaches to the city. And so far, we're not doing so well with finding good places to eat along the way, as we have always managed to do in other cities.

We have surely been spoiled for Rome by approaching it after a week in Puglia, where it seems impossible to have a bad meal. In Peschici, pasta was made by hand, served with fish caught that morning, and it was served happily and efficiently. No restaurant meal was complete without us being brought a complimentary bottle of limoncello, yet the credit card barely blinked all week. Such is not the case here, although clearly Rome abounds with good eateries. We just need to be more diligent about finding them. Perhaps we'll have more luck next visit.

And there will be a next visit. The city beckons in so many ways, but especially in its colours. As we wander its streets for one last day, and then pack up for a criminally early flight home tomorrow morning, I'll leave you a few examples.... And the very last photo gives you a traveller garbed in a comparatively subdued dress of navy cotton, almost cool enough for the sweltering heat of a colourful city...

 

 

 

 

 
 

When next we chat, I'll be back in the very different palette of my island home. Till then, ciao....

 

8 comments:

  1. Happy landings...

    And happy Canada Day too, especially if you make it back to Canadian soil in time.

    Lovely to read of your time in Rome. I know what you mean about places to eat - we felt the same. I mean there must be lots of lovely restaurants at less than eye-watering prices but we couldn't find them, either. Not that the freshly cooked pasta and pizzas weren't good, but we did find ourselves amidst visitors rather than locals. Maybe it is a centre-of-capital-city thing?

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    1. We did discover better spots (one quite delightful lunch!) our last day, but for pedestrians, planning would have to be brilliant to get a decent lunch within walking distance of the Colosseum, as far as we could tell. And much of the pasta is not freshly cooked, and compares very poorly to food in Puglia. It seems easier to get out of the central knot/capital city in others we've been to. But I did find much to love, and we will definitely try to get back for a longer visit.

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  2. I'm still not sure about Rome either, three years later. There was so much about it that was tiresome. But yes, that warm ochre against the blue sky....it's lovely. And I do have some lovely memories of Rome, and discovering a...what was that sandwich called again, the Italian version of a croque Monsieur, dripping with cheese, and then the ice cold Limoncello (our first) that the proprietress set down in front of us after we'd paid our bill.

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    1. Oh, too bad, we never discovered those grilled sandwiches (panini?) -- but you must have found better restaurants than we did to rate the complimentary limoncello. While it was part of every single restaurant meal we had in Puglia, in Rome we only got it one evening, from a waiter grateful for our support after a particularly arrogant and very picky (Am. tourist) couple taxed his patience at a nearby table. . . . We found it very hard to figure out how to get away from the tourist clusters, much easier to do in Paris ...

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  3. I love your navy dress, both summery and elegant.
    I haven't stayed in Rome for many years but I enjoyed it, unlike my husband who was perhaps more critical, having Sicilan ancestry and fluent Italian. Unfortunately our stopover there the year before last didn't help endear the city to him.
    Now that you are safely home I can tell you of our less that stellar experience of Alitalia.
    We flew into Rome with a 3 hour break before our flight to Palermo Sicily. We went straight to e-check in but our tickets were rejected. It seems the flight was overbooked and we had been bumped, despite having booked and paid 3 months in advance and confirmed the day before. Instead of a leisurely lunch in the domestic terminal, where for some reason the food is better than in the international terminal, we had to stay within sight of the standby desk, all flights for that day being fully booked. Just 5 minutes before boarding closed on "our" flight, we were given 2 boarding passes, but only one had a seat number. Once on the plane, passengers were milling about, a harrased hostess was holding a large seating plan and trying to find seats for everyone. The first 3 seats to which she directed us already had passengers in them and it was 4th seat lucky. A few minutes later, another passenger arrived with a ticket for my seat, but I refused to move and he gave in with good grace. Eventually, everyone was seated and the plane took off about 45 minutes late.
    It was our first visit to Sicily and despite the rocky start we loved it. Lots of history, excellent and interesting food, beautiful scenery. We are planning a return visit next year.
    Lilibet

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    1. Oh my gosh, I'm glad I didn't know this earlier, but it matches the impression we gained, on Tuesday morning, of the Rome airport. As soon as we got home, in fact, I emailed the daughter who's still in Italy with her family and I told her to make sure they leave lots of time at the airport. I've never seen so much disorganization NOR so much line-jumping at an airport. We were there 2.5 hours before our flight (and since there was only 1 BA agent when we got there, arriving earlier wouldn't have done much good), and we got to boarding minutes before the gate closed. Too close for comfort!
      Alitalia currently has my other daughter's luggage, but is not returning it and, except for an email sent (probably inadvertently) by a helpful employee, is pretending they don't have it and defaulting to bureaucratese. I can only hope that paying for its storage will eventually cut into their profits -- it's an airline that seems to match its country's main airport, and I won't be flying it if I can help it. . . .
      I've heard great things about Sicily and hope to get there someday, but I'll try to avoid Fiumicino!

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  4. Gotta say, the insanity of Rome (and its relative decrepitude) are not for me. Mind you, I love many other parts of Italy...

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    1. And the food quite convincingly wins one over. . .

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