Well, I’m down to my last evening in Italia – for now. I forgot to mention the Smart Car incident last night. Apparently, if you want a compact car that is nearly impossible to steal, buy a smart car. While waiting for my dinner, I watched a woman lock her keys in her new Smart Car. She went inside the nearby scooter shop and came out a few minutes later with a man holding a towel, a coat hanger and a hammer. He proceeded to wham on the driver’s side window several times, stopped when it wouldn’t break, walked around the car a few times and then went back to whamming away at the window. After several more tries, it finally broke – sort of. He couldn’t seem to open it up wide enough though and ended up fishing an umbrella through the little hole to press the lock button. My pizza arrived about then so, I didn’t watch the rest. They could really use a locksmith in this town.
I did notice a lot more people on the streets – regional bus\tram strikes today. The locals are actually crowding onto the ArchaeoBus tourist buses. I decided to walk all the way down the Tiber from the Castel St Angelo to the Testaccio – I thought I should see where I’ll be working in October. I found the island to be very interesting. The Romans sculpted the nose of the island to look like a giant travertine ships prow. The bridge to the island was built in 62bc and is still used!! I also walked down in front of the Cloaca Maxima – the outlet to the ancient sewer, which they also still use today. From there you walk a ways and then pass by the remains of the ancient warves along the river, below the Aventine hill.
From the Aventine, I climbed up and across the hill and dropped down to the Circus Maximus. I walked right past the American Embassy to the Holy See. I stuck my hand inside the fence – my right hand was in the USA today!
Once I hit the circus, I decided that I really needed to shower and eat so, I cut a straight line for my hotel. I want to eat at the Gallina Bianca – the White Chicken. They don’t serve dinner until 7 so, I decided to come down and get online first. Tonight I’ll try something new for dinner with a gallon of water. I got a little warm today. I take the 7:51 Leonardo to the airport in the morning and then the 10:55 AA flight home. I’ll post photo’s from the trip here after I’ve had a good night’s sleep. It’s been quite a trip! I’m ready for for next year…
I spent today tracking down random, free, really old things. I found Isis sitting alone in a corner behind a park, right in front of the Vittorio Emanuelle monument. From there I headed kind of north and found houses and offices that had been built into the old Roman upper stories. The ancient brickwork is easy to spot once you find it. From there I went on and found the foot of the colossal statue of Serapis (Isis’s consort). They really should put those two back together… After that, I accidently stumbled into the Campo dei Fiori. The market is really cool. I bought a small bag of giant blackberries (about as big as small chicken eggs)and walked around taking pictures of vegetables and fruit. A little old man was selling these things that make curly fries or cucumber whirls and he talked me into buying one for €1.