22nd June 2012
I cannot believe I agreed to go on a walking tour today – I am usually the last person to want to walk anywhere and I must have walked a hundred kilometres in Rome already – about 5 of them this morning!! I traipsed all the way up to the Piazza della Republica to the post office, bought a posting box, walked back to the hotel, packed what I wanted to send home, carried it back to the post office – 12 bloody kilos, and walked back to the hotel, again!!
Note to self – never, ever again buy so many presents for everyone when I go overseas.
The walking tour guide was a lovely gentleman by the name of Romano, he was a great guide, full of little tidbits about places and buildings that I hadn’t heard or read before. Even though I’d seen a few of the sights earlier, this time I was seeing them with Romano’s stories as well so it was a totally different experience.
Piazza Navona and the Spanish Steps were a couple of the places I saw for the first time today. I’m ashamed to say I have walked past the Spanish Steps other days without taking any notice of them. Come to think of it I still don’t know too much about them or why they are so famous, I didn’t think to ask while we were there – oh well, I’ll find out some time I guess!
There are cafe’s all around Piazza Navona and it’s absolutely full of artists, or at least people selling paintings. I’m not completely convinced they all paint the scenes they sell but it sure makes for an interesting bit of outdoor “window” shopping. I think I liked the fountain in the centre of the piazza, Fontana Dei Quattro Fiumi, best. It’s quite ornate and was created by Bernini in the early 1650s. They say it was so expensive that the bread tax had to be raised to cover the cost – that’s pretty amazing isn’t it?
It was a full day again today, we did a bit of shopping after the walking tour. Of course I had to buy a couple of things, as I’d sent all those kilos home this morning I had a wee bit of room to cram some more into, hehehe. Sadly I said goodbye to the pocket rockets from Sydney again this arvo, had an early dinner and headed back to the hotel to pack my bags for Athens and the Greek Islands!!