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Welcome My name is Tess. I'm a 9-5 New Yorker and traveler. My hobbies include destroying suitcases, photo-bombing tourists in Times Square, and taking long romantic ADHD walks around the globe. Welcome!

Jan 2, 2012

Roaming Rome - part 2

Hey 2012!!!

 Everyone gets a clean slate with the New Year. In the last Roaming Rome post, I ran my trap and said that I would follow up with the rest of the best of Italy pics. And since I have the attention span of a fruit fly and my ADHD flares up at random, let's just get right to it shall we?  And at the bottom are some tips for travelling to Rome.

Pons Cestius
Dear Italy, I would be considered a cheap date in Rome because it's such a Romantic city.   
a long walk on the Cestius over the Tiber river followed by a glass of hot wine in the chilly weather (An Italian must)
and I'd be saying "Ti amo' to just about anyone.

Dear Italy: your FIAT game is crazy! You don't believe in full size vehicles because it just ain't practical!In New York we would still put rims on a fiat and a flashy paint job sort of like.......


Another Church...just 3 blocks from my hotel.

Dear Italy: I quickly found out that public consumption of alcohol is legal and one never has to go too far to repent for public indecency - coincidence? 

 She is not the Mailman!
Dear Italy your nuns stroll the streets, take buses, shop in the markets, and drink espresso just like
common folk! How surreal, but I like!

Dear Italy the average tenement building in Rome would be a hi-rise condo in New York. Clearly NYC buildings could use some Roman-Botox or just a whole darn face-lift perhaps?

Dear Italy when you said ruins you didn't lie. These darn things are everywhere!
Believe it or not this is still more or less in the downtown area.  Literally you can get to just about everything by bus or metro well within 1 hour. Most Romans just walk.  Rome is so New Yorkish
Dear Italy The Flavian Amphitheatre (Colosseum) was a scenic 25 minute walk  from my hotel. Which means that back in the days inebriated Coliseum party goers could pretty much stumble home. Now that's economical planning!   

Dear Italy I don't recall Spartacus puffing on Marlboro's? Please tell your photo-op gladiators no smoking on the job.  Grazie!

Shops on Via Cola di Rienzo and Via Ottaviano
Dear Italy, your shoe shoe game is off the hook! Leather seriously does grows on trees. The downside -  my inability to remember that 69 Euros is like $91 USD. So instead of giving myself the currency conversation blues, I simply pretended that I too get paid in euros.

.....More Ruins

Victor Emmanuel II Monument - Il Vittoriano

A 10 minute bus ride from Termini Stazione, the history of this site goes something like this... Man has a vision, man gets commissioned to build vision out of marble in honor of Italy's first King -Victor E.

Money runs out, the city then foots the bill for the completion, man dies before building is complete. Once completed, a humongous statue erected in king's image and likeness. But man who died building marble monstrosity gets shafted. Citizens of Rome loathe the building because of bad curb appeal - The end.

 Oh and there is a fabulous FREE museum inside. Want to know more follow the link above.  

Dear Italy ...you truly are a classic beauty

Some helpful tid-bits if you decide to Roam Rome 

I am the average 9-5 worker like most of you nothing fabulous about my profession except for those vacation days. So I didn't do anything that you too couldn't do.

If you're considering packing a bag & blowing across continents here's a few things to consider if the wind drops you in Rome. And if you have any questions please send it on over - I'll be sure to answer before you lose all interest!
Ciao bellos

  1. If you're looking for cheap accommodations with convenience, there are a plethora of B&B's near Termini Stazione, the central transportation hub of Rome.  I stayed @ Maryellen & Giovy's.  It's 50 for single & 60 for a double per night. There is also a tasty bfast spread included with the cost of the room. 
  2. The hotel is 5 minutes walking distance from Termini Stazione. The area hosts many authentic eateries, money exchange stores, B&B's and Internet cafes en route to the Stazione. Giovy's also offer maps of Rome with all tourists attractions listed and they will gladly tell you how to get where you need to go. Giovy is extremely friendly and helpful - you need only ask and her English is very good. Don't trust me? well read the reviews
  3. Do not exchange money in the airport as the rates are horrible. Also aviod excessively using ATM's as those exchange rates are brutal as well. Bring cash and use the money exchange shops for the best rate.
  4. There are shuttle buses from Fiumicino Airport that will take you to other central locations for 7euros per ticket and about a one hour ride. The shuttle dropped me at Termini from there a short walk to the Hotel. 
  5. It pays to know Spanish - this is the closest language to Italian & therefore many of the words transition smoothly upon Italian ears. Just throw in some expressive hand gestures - imitation is the best form of flattery.
  6. Keep your eyes open - when navigating public transportation, bus stops have legends of which buses go where and there are occasionally info booths with service person who can guide you as well.  subway have legends that list all the stops so you'll know when and where you arrive. (like the newer NYC subway cars).
  7. Bring flats & sneakers and go light on the fancy foot ware.  If you plan on doing the tourist bid, then pass on the dressy heels. Italians aren't impressed by your attempt at fashionable footware - they are the originators of it. Opt for fashionable flats and a pair of pumas or Nike's. Italians love their funky colored sneakers which oftentimes are as expensive as high end shoes.  
  8. EAT EAT EAT - go ahead try it all  - it's very reasonably priced. Italians know that food brings people together so they won't singe your pockets to feed you well.  opt for smaller restaurants off the beaten path like in the Trastevere area (by bus or train). They are gems to the community.
  9. Lost? Ask another foreigner -  Rome has a healthy population of immigrants whom usually speak several languages in addition to Italian. So if you're lost remember the Africans speak french and English. The South Americans speak Spanish & most Asians/Indians speak a fair amount of English as do the Italians.  So no worries this city is self explanatory.
  10. If you're a single gal no worries Rome is a safe city- even after dark when the streets come to life you'll still feel at ease. Don't worry about beating off lusty Italian boys with a bat, Romans are polite and friendly.

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