Rome

Ah, Bella Roma…again!

Yes we managed another visit to Rome; this is my third and Narelle’s fourth visit since we arrived in England. The difference; we took Narelle’s Dad and brother for their first visit.

Being the middle of August it was a very pleasant 30 degrees most days, full sun no clouds. It felt like a real summer, not like the summer we have had in England – I have come up with a name for this place. NZ is “Island of the long white cloud”; England is “Island of the long grey cloud”. Its true, even now as I write this it is grey, with a hint of blue.

In Rome we managed to get to the places we haven’t seen……like the Pantheon, Catacomb’s, numerous churches that we haven’t visited. We also managed a day trip to Pompeii. This trip is worth doing, we took a tour that cost us €95 per head which is not much more than it would cost if we used public transport to get there. The trip included and I quote “…a meal at the best Italian restaurant in Pompeii work more than €25…” well the meal was fine but it wasn’t €25 worth and it was not the best in Pompeii, although I expect that if we ate with the locals where they were eating wood fired pizzas it would have been a lot better, but there were 100 people to feed.

I found the tour too rushed, we only had two hours in the ancient city of Pompeii which was not enough, I think four to five hours would have been better as there is so much to see, the city is huge! All the reading and photos don’t prepare you for it.

Each night in Rome was finished with an ice cream from one of the local gelateria’s – always so good. Rome in August is very quite, there is very little traffic, very few local business are open, the selection of dining is limited as are the coffee houses. Yet the city is full of tourist, if you think that it is quieter in August then yes for locals, no for tourists!

Terry and Chris had a great time; it was a shame that we couldn’t take them to all the great eating spots of Rome. Terry had an unfortunate incident with a dog…I mean a pick pocketer! Within ten seconds, getting on the train and putting his hand down to his pocket – gone! So quick and no one saw anything. It was the only downside to the trip. So always be careful with your cash, luckily he only lost a small amount of cash and a debit card (not credit) so the loss was small, it could have been so much worse. So remember when in Rome be very careful and watch for the scams, normally when getting on or off the train someone will hold people up, and that is when they will get you, we think Terry was done with people getting off the train, looking for an opportunity and at the last minute pushing through and taking the wallet, the doors are closed before you can do anything.

Thanks to Chris and Terry for making an effort to see the city that we love so much.

We would also like to thank David and Karim for the excellent accommodation in Rome, and it was great catching up with you and your Mother. The new hotel looks great and we hope we can stay there sometime soon, maybe next year. We will post the details on this web site soon.

Ciao

Dave & Narelle.

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