By Ridgeback13


Didn’t sleep well at all last night….I’m going to have to avoid the coffee here in future! As a result it was a bit of a struggle to get up and out, but we’d decided to catch the metro over to the Vatican museum so walked round the corner to the station. Unbelievably sardine packed trains….two in a row. Even if we’d wanted to we couldn’t have fitted onto them, but were worried about missing our timed slot so dithered a while on whether to wait for another or cut and run… We managed to grab a taxi on the street nearby who drove like a Roman to get us there despite terrible traffic. The driver was very jolly and chatty and was delighted to hear we were from Scotland (“very beautiful…mountains, castles, Loch Ness monster”!) and dropped us off at the ticket office in time for us to join our ‘skip the line’ group. When we walked over to the museum entrance it was clear we didn’t really need to have bought the tickets as there was no line to skip! Hey ho, you can’t predict everything! We were really pleased we hadn’t booked a tour though as we didn’t want to be herded through at someone else’s pace but instead just follow through at our own pace. Highlights for us were the Egyptian section, the Etruscan vases (stunning shapes, extra) and surviving glass jars from then and, later, from Pompeii, the contemporary art section, and finding a marble statue that looked just like Ollie.
We talked about the last time we were here, when A was about 4, and she skidded and slid along the marble floors in the map room. She didn’t actually slide along it today but had to take a photo of her there so I can find one from last time when I get home (I hope!).
Although there were some showers, we spent some time in the gardens in lovely sunshine too, and ended up having a late salad/sandwich lunch in the cafe there so we could finish seeing everything we wanted to. Managed to get a seat in the Sistine chapel so it was less sore on our necks to stare up at the ceiling…pleased we had the book with us to work out what each scene was about.
Finally left there about 3pm and walked round to St Peter’s Basilica eating some gelati and sat for a while in the sun before joining the queue for security…not too long a wait. Amazed at the scale of the church inside….and the beauty of the Dome. We spent quite a while there, definitely tiring after the day!
Walked from there to the Spanish steps via the streets full of high end fashion shops, and then stopped for a drink in a little bar (nice complimentary pizza squares with our drinks…wish bars in Edinburgh gave you such lovely snacks!). Once it was dark we headed over to the Trevi fountain (extra) to see it lit up. Rather lovely….beautiful colour to the clear water and yet more magnificent marble!
More walking (another 10 miles today] to get home and leave our bags then tried to get a table at the nearest restaurant but it was fully booked..drat… so we went to Molina’s which was round the corner. Lovely to be in a buzzy atmosphere and surrounded by Italians rather than tourists. A had a selection of the 3 famous Roman pastas and I had meatballs then she had a delicious tiramisu…talk about eating the classics! Lovely, but we were whacked so came straight home to bed. Rich day of art, religion, sightseeing and more marble than you’d have thought possible!

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