Thursday, 18 September 2008

Rome By Night

From Ancona, we took the bus over to Rome. From the tip of a friend, we stayed at The Yellow Hostel, near the main train station of Termini. With a close-knit community feel, there was a lounge and The Yellow Bar next door.

We met up with Julia's good friend, Alex Strafford, who unlike us, had already started his study abroad program in Rome. We exited the station of Colosseo, where we were presented with the indescribable and awe-inspiring view of the Coliseum!

The Colosseum in all of its glory! What a nice surprise!

Originally the Flavian Amphitheatre, the Coliseum was completed in 80AD under Titus. As the Coliseum was utilized for gladiator contests and public spectacles, it is estimated that approximately half a million people and over one million wild animals died in the Coliseum games.

After meeting with Alec's roommates and convincing them to come out with us the next night, we had confirmed a place for the rest of our Rome trip! (Thank goodness because the hostel was sold out for the next few nights!) We had our late dinner at Birra Morretti and had pasta of course! Alec then took us on a wonderful tour of the city.

Tip: Rome is a must-see city by night! Preferably post mid-night when the streets are less crowded, one falls in love!

At the Trevi Fountain, we had the monument to ourselves as there were no people (it was about 2:30AMish). Finally completed in 1762, the fountain's horses symbolize fluctuating moods of the sea as the God of the Sea, Neptune, lies as the central figure.

The Fontana di Trevi. We shall return to Rome one day!

Tip: Legend has it that if you throw a coin in the Trevi Fountain, you will return to Rome one day! Proper position is to throw a coin over your shoulder with your back to the fountain. See above.

We then headed to the Pantheon (with an "n", not Parthenon) which was incredibly massive. Originally built as a temple to worship all the Ancient Roman gods, the term is now generally utilized for monuments where aristocratic dead lay. Currently, the Pantheon is still used as a church and the dome allows rain to fall through inside.

The massive Pantheon

After becoming a bit lost (it's Rome afterall), we headed off to Campo de Fiori, a popular bar spot for young people, typically Americans. On the way there, Alec began to get "humped on the leg" by some intoxicated local. It was quite funny. At the bus stop back home, the local showed up...and "humped" Alec's leg again. Alec pushed him away and somehow, both boys went flying! We got back at 3:30AM - this was supposedly our "relaxing" night. Haha, it was a nice sleep at the hostel nonetheless!

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