Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Rome if you want to...

Rome around the world...

ah... the comedy never ends with mis-spelling the B-52 lyrics. Girlclumsy sits behind me in the apartment we are currently staying at cursing me (politely but with venom) for pre-empting her gag title! a-ha!

aaaaanyhoo... Rome.. the eternal city... full of stuff... so much stuff. Ancient stuff, religious stuff, streets, shops and other stuff. We came here a few years ago and pushed ooooh so much into 6 days and still had so much more to see. This time we decided to not run ourselves ragged and just see the things we missed from before.. or we really really liked.

So yesterday (after be rescued from a highway SOMEWHERE in Rome but the man who owns the apartment we are staying in.. we really had no idea where we were or where we were meant to go to ... but Renato came and picked us up from the side of the road in his sexy green jaguar and gave us a tour of the local area... awww.. what a nice man) we headed out to the Colloseum (just walked around it as we have been in before and we are poooooooooor) and then the Roman forum (which i just love) and into the main city area to wander Via de Corso (where the shops are plentiful and expensive). We kept noticing places from Dan Brown,s "Angels and Demons" which imo is a better story than Da Vinci Code and was its precursor and had a little look inside of them... many churches and fountains and suchlike. It is amazing how the outside of a church can be quite dowdy and bland but inside is a riot of gold and woodwork and sure one of those churches could be sold off for billions and used to feed the poor and suchlike but what would a filthy atheist like me know about helping the masses : Had a wander past the Spanish Steps (it looks better by night than by day.. and there are less gyspies trying to sell you tat also) and more importantly went into the Pantheon... oh how i love this pagan temple cum basilica. Everytime i come here i feel 'something'. The age of the place is staggering and all the 'modern' trappings of the church cant hide the fact that this was and still is an ancient place of worship and mystery and general pagan sexiness. The 9m wide Occulus in the roof stares down on you and you know you are someplace special. Also Raphael's remains are in here so that is just a bonus for me! Onwards to throw coins into the Trevi fountain (we shall return!) and this time we were able to enter the church next to the fountain to see the place where the Pope's hearts are kept after they died.. but not the hearst themselves as they are hidden away...poo

Today we went to the staggeringly beautiful St Peter's (My big church is bigger than your big church) Basilica. I love the sense of space in this place.. and it has Michelangelo's Pieta as well... and i have come to really love that sculpture. IMO Michelangelo couldnt paint women to save his life (Sistine Chapel's women are rubbish... men with boobs) but by crikey could he sculpt them... and this Pieta is the best of the bunch and generally a gorgeous bit of artwork. We even went under the Basilica to see JPII's (John Paul the second for those easily offended) final resting place. It was very simple and white marble... which is better than most of the show off burial chambers the Popes used to have. Very similar to JP1 in fact... so well done JP2. Off to the Castel St Angelo which used to be the final resting place for Emperor Hadrien's ashes (the scottish wall guy) but has been a church, a fortress and a papal hidey hole in bad times (also a cracking backdrop for 'angels and demons').

Finally got to see the sculpture 'The Ecstasy of St Teresa' in Santa Maria Del Vittorio (or something similar). Great sculpture.. my new fourth fave after David and 'Rape of the Sabine Women' and Mike's Pieta. This chick basically had endless orgasms given to her by god and Bernini decided to make a sculpture of it.. nice! It is a great sculpture in all seriousness and worth hunting down when you come to Rome.

To top the day off we took a stroll along the Circus Maximus (next to the imprssive runs perched ontop of the Palantine Hill.. where Romulus and Remus were kept alive by the she-wolf) to see the 'Bocca della Verita'. The Mouth of Truth. It supposedly bites the hand off of any liars that place their digits within is marble maw but saaaaaadly my truthiness could not be verified as the place was closed and we could only stare at the marble ex-sewer cover.. shame ;)

2 days in Rome is never enough but we only came here this time as the flights were cheap and we had some time to kill before Liverpool.. which we will be in tomorrow

In the words of Girlclumsy 'Veni, Vidi, Visa' ... 'We Came, We Saw, We did a little shopping'

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