Wednesday, July 10, 2013

European Trip Rome: Day one.

I've spent the last three weeks in Europe.  I've adapted e mails I sent family and friends while there and have added my photos that go along with the trip.  I will be posting a mid week travelogue of my time.  This week is my first day in Rome. 
Hello! Yesterday, super busy!!  After breakfast we went to the church, San Pietro, and saw the Moses. 
 I couldn't tear myself away.  St Peter's chains are also there in view under the altar.  But for me the Moses was tremendous. Michelangelo considered this his most perfect sculpture.  Can you see the muscles and veins, the weight of his beard.....the horns reflect the Glory of God that Moses encountered while on Mount Sinai.  And to think this great work of art is in an unassuming church hidden away in a back neighborhood...we almost couldn't find it...local Italians didn't know what we were looking for.

 Chains of St. Peter

 From there we went near the Colosseum and looked at Roman ruins.  Really just walked around and stepped into whatever historical sight we wanted to look at. 
The ruins are behind this interesting couple.  Do you know how they do it?  I do.
 Went to another Cathedral, had Michelangelo's Risen Christ.  The Cathedral was called Mary of Minerva and has the bones of St. Catherine of Siena under the main altar.
  Of course all these churches are lined with altars up and down on both sides and in the cross sections.  Each altar is enclosed in a separate chapel flanked by loads of paintings and sculptures.  Incredible.  Lisa said she had never been in such a beautiful Cathedral before.
Across the road was the Pantheon.  I think this is where St. Paul addressed people about the unknown God. Never mind, that was in Ephesus.  But it was a pantheon just like this. It is now a church and, even though round, has separate chapels and altars circling it.  The artist Raphael is buried there under one of the altars.
One of Raphael's paintings at the Pantheon
We walked on to the famous fountain de Trevi. 
Incredible.  It's the whole back side of a building. 
This is another famous fountain. I can't remember the name.
What was funny to us is how difficult it was to find any information on anything.  There's no signs or plaques telling you what things are.  I'll have to look a lot of stuff up later.
This is the famous Trevi fountain.
We ate at the Piazza Novana.  Food was great.  Service, meh.  Waiter sarcastically thanked us for our generosity when we gave him a four euro tip.  Everything is very expensive. 
But the Cathedrals and Pantheon were free.  Interesting.

Today we leave for the Vatican.  We may stay the whole day there.  We walked our legs off yesterday.  The good thing is that Derek and I crashed and didn't get up until this morning.  Feel much better.
These photos are all my own.


Lucy said...

Your photos are great! I hope you enjoy the Vatican.

I've only been to the Amalfi Coast in Italy, but we made time for Pompeii which was incredible. I'd love to see Rome! The art and culture there seems unbeatable.

B Reading said...

Lovely photos. Reminds me of our trip to Rome a few years ago. Enjoy the rest of your tour.

Sharon Wilfong said...

Thanks, Jane. It's always more interesting when something's about a place we've already experienced. Have a good day!

Sharon Wilfong said...

Thanks, Lucy. We were going to go to the Amalfi Coast but we couldn't fit it in. I wish we could have seen Pompeii. Maybe next time. Have a great day!

Brian Joseph said...

Wow! It is like you are blogging from the center of Western Civilization!

Enjoy the remainder of your trip and safe travels!

Sharon Wilfong said...

Thanks, Brian. It was certainly food for thought to trace my own heritage and how I came to be where I am now and how have expression of my beliefs have changed.

Rachel said...

Sharon, are you sure the waiter was being sarcastic? Tipping is not the standard in Italy. Italians don't tip wait staff at all. So he should have felt fortunate to get anything. But maybe he now expects large tips from American tourists??? Glad you are having a good time! My sisters and I saw the Trevi Fountain at night, and it was gorgeous all lit up. We through coins over our shoulder into the fountain because we were told it would ensure our return to Rome. We're not superstitious, but it was just a fun thing to do. And we can't wait to go back in a couple of years!

Sharon Wilfong said...

Oh he was being sarcastic. He told us he expected to be tipped and it was 20% of the food. Hence his sarcasm. Still the food was still good. Everywhere we went the food was wonderful!
I wish we had seen the Trevi fountain lit up. I heard about throwing coins. We didn't but I bet that was fun. I also hope I get to go back to Europe. In a way I felt this trip was a trial run.

Travel-PB said...

Nice post and beautiful photos. I also just came back from my first trip to Rome. I had a blast!
If you are interested in how it went or need some last minute tips, you are welcome to visit my blog:

If you just like to look at some nice travel photos, you are also very welcome to drop by. Have fun, keep travelling and don't stop blogging about it!

Sharon Wilfong said...

Thanks, Marko. I will definitely check out your blog.