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Roma 2017

After flying into Pisa the previous day, we woke up at seven the next morning, got ready, booked entrance tickets to the Vatican and left our apartment by 8 am.
Picked up breakfast at Santa Maria Novella Station in Florence (Firenze)
Then settled in for the trip to Rome...
Scribbled a bit in the train... we reached Roma in an hour and a half, the trip by road would have taken three hours. These trains, called frecciarossa, whiz by so fast you hear your ears popping from time to time.
We reached Roma termini and after buying day passes for 7 euros each, we caught a train to the Vatican. Truth be said, the Vatican is too much to handle, the crowd, the heat... it can be suffocating and exhausting. 
Everything is of course rather pretty inside... and this is just the ceiling.
Works of art, under pretty ceilings...
But you tend to feel trapped... 
And can't wait to be outdoors again.
Some pretty stained glass window...
I like this painting, quite evocative...
This is the description under the painting...
Madonna and Child
This angel like thing was quite captivating too... made from metal bits or scraps of metal... I no longer remember.
And finally after walking around so much we reached the Sistine Chapel... 
With the famous touch of God... resulting in the creation of Adam, by Michaelangelo.
Sistine chapel floor pattern...
Had to rest for a while here... it was too tiring.
One last look at the Sistine chapel before...
Walking out to check out the other famous Church...
St. Peter's Basilica
I think this is the adoration room...
Gilded interiors...
A group of young priests praying...
Walked out of the Vatican (after posting a few postcards) with a headache and went to the train station, took a train to the Trevi fountain stop. Took an advil and had lunch at a nice place... This was some pretty good pizza.
And some rather nice ravioli...
After the advil kicked in, I was back to normal and a gelato seemed necessary to beat the heat... Wonder why they built a city without trees? What did they hope to achieve, the Roman/Catholic empire... isn't Nature part of Divine creation? Then why build a city without trees, or why not plant them now where it would totally be useful and provide shade? St. Peter's square is quite huge, trees here and there would make it more appealing, I remember back in 2015 we were roasting under the sun while waiting for the Pope to make an appearance... A place without trees or nature is not really interesting, no matter how many important people or artifacts reside there. 
We then walked to the Trevi fountain and this was a treat... I couldn't see this place back in 2015, it was under renovation. But seeing it this time was rather nice... 
Of course the place is teeming with tourists throwing coins into the fountain. Euros were too precious to throw in, so we threw in some five rupee and ten rupee coins which I guess will remain there...
Cause of what this plaque says.
 
Mother Mary atop this tower... I think it depicts her Assumption.
Walked to the Spanish steps which are quite close by...
This fountain is right in front of the steps... and people were drinking from this fountain. And it really was crazy with the heat, so I filled my bottle too with this water and one sip of it was magical... it was refreshingly cold and fresh. They might have removed all trees in the city of Rome, but atleast their aqua ducts are top notch. I don't know where the water was coming from and how it stayed cold in the crazy heat, but this is Rome's saving grace... the cool water that is apparently quite available everywhere, makes the city more hospitable and enjoyable. Right near these Spanish steps is a John Keats and Shelley museum and of course we walked in, John Keats apparently died there in that house near the Spanish steps. He came to Roma to recuperate, but died within a year or so and Shelley was a good friend of his... and they two are buried in a cemetery which is at the other end of Rome, and I really wanted to visit this cemetery but there wasn't enough time.
So we bought a few pretty postcards that I posted to myself, sent another to a friend.  
These lines by John Keats printed behind the postcard was captivating... 
Then we walked some more, came across a cafe... my sister had some coffee and I picked this up, it's called Aragostine (wiki calls it sfogliatella). This was filled with chocolate and it was really good, a crustier version of a croissant, more crunchier and flakier... quite a nice treat. 
A lion fountain... 
The water here too was pretty cold... didn't drink it though.
Took a train to the Colosseum... couldn't go in as it was quite late, after visiting hours.

We continued walking, came across a small chapel...
The stained glass inside
Hardly any people around... it was getting late and we had to go back to Firenze, so...
Took a train back to Roma Termini, picked up some huge slices of pizza for our the train journey.
Back in our room... the John Keats and Percy Shelley book I inadvertently gifted myself.
Was a thoroughly exhausting day, but roaming around Rome with these two was pretty epic.

Here's a video of me throwing coins into Fontana di Trevi. 

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