A Room in Rome: Sat., May 14th, 2011

Had a very good night’s sleep, from about 11 p.m. to 7:30 a.m. Feeling more like myself.

Wore lightweight clothes to go to San Pietro (another San Pietro,  not the large one in the Vatican) where Michelangelo’s Moses is on permanent display. But, when we took the Metro, Kal was jostled and someone picked his pocket with his wallet. We were already on the platform to go to the basilica, so we went back up the very long escalator to the Metro office. Lo and behold, someone had turned in his wallet, minus the money, of course. But all his credit cards were intact.

After that little drama, we continued to our first stop to see Moses. Quite impressive! The two little “horns” on his head are actually meant to be rays of sunlight. Many non-Jewish people think that these are real horns and expect all Jews to have them!  The small church was quite lovely and not nearly so crowded as The Vatican, so this was a more pleasant stop. Also, on the walk up from the Metro stop to the church there was a musician playing a “squeeze box” (accordian),  but he was in a dark area of the covered steps, so I did not take a picture. But it would have made a nice photo.

We stayed a the church a short while and then walked on to see the Colosseum (“Coliseum”). Already growing hot, but I brought our small black rain umbrella, because there was a chance of showers and my new parasol would have been ruined.  But, it never rained! Plenty of sunshine and heat. Again, there were so many tourists around the Coliseum area that I decided not to take a tour of the inside. To be honest, I never intended to see a place where Christians were fed to the lions. Its violent history was too much for me to pay homage to the structure, despite its incredible architecture.

Below are three miscellaneous photos: Left are ruins near the Coliseum, in the center are sweethearts or  *”Lovers Among the Ruins,” and to the right are columns that are left from a building no longer identifiable. (*There was a wonderful movie with Katherine Hepburn and Sir Lawrence Olivier called Love Among the Ruins, so I just changed the first word to lovers.)

From the Coliseum, we waited in line to see The Forum. Woody Allen used this in one of his movies, so it was familiar to me. But Rhoda wasn’t feeling up to waiting in line in the heat, so we walked away from the area to sit outside for a lovely lunch under a large umbrella and caught a delightful breeze.

Alan, Jackie and Irv stayed in the area to see more ruins, while Kal, Rhoda and I headed back to the hotel. I showered and rested and read until Alan came back. Then we both took a nap before dinner. We dressed for the evening and went to the bus stop near the Metro to go back to see some of the ruins at night that Jackie, Alan & Irv had seen earlier.

The bus was so crowded that all of us could not get on, so we got off, but in the throng of people on the bus, Irv’s pocket was picked. Fortunately, most of his money was not in his wallet, but in his money belt. However, he did lose his credit cards. Our plans for the ruins were “ruined” and we went right back to the hotel so Jackie & Irv could cancel their credit cards.

We could have used this “gladiator” today (near the Coliseum) to help us retrieve the wallets. With his fake sword and costume, maybe we would have scared the pick pocketers. He was taking a picture of a tourist in gladiator garb. Anything to make a buck!!

(Construction going on in the background.)

After that, Jackie, Irv, Alan & I walked to the police station and were there at least one hour to report the theft.  Another young girl, actually a guide from an eastern European country, had her passport stolen and she was there, also. Fortunately, she had friends who could give her a place to stay until she could go to the consulate and get a new passport. This was the weekend and of course, she could not do anything until Monday.

By the time we completed reporting the theft, about 8:00 pm, we figured Rhoda & Kal had given up on us and gone to eat, so we ate right around the corner at a family run Italian restaurant where all the family seemed to be working, even the very elderly father and mother, who made sure the damask cloths were changed right away.  Food was good, but I think we were more concerned about the day’s events than the food. Rhoda & Kal missed us at the police station & we found them eating at another restaurant, thanks to the concierge.

We left them to finish their dinner and the four of us stopped for gelato on the way back to the hotel.  Enough drama for today!  This day called for a treat!

P.S. While walking from seeing Moses to the Coliseum, I spotted laundry hanging from a side street balcony. Where we live, no laundry hanging is allowed, so I decided to take this picture to prove that hanging laundry outside in the air is alive and well in Italy!


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