We began our trek to the Pantheon from Piazza Venezia. By now we had decided to walk everywhere because we had heard all the horror stories about taxi cab ripoffs in Rome.
- “Selfieselfie, selfieselfie…”
We’d heard about rose peddlers too but have yet to encounter any.
They are shamelessly aggressive. We first encountered vendors selling selfie sticks last year but we’ve never had so many strangers literally get in our faces waving sticks around. In some countries that would be considered a declaration of war.
I broke down and bought myself a bitchin’ hat. My first choice was a neon pink hat with the word “ROME” across the top but they didn’t have any in my size. My next choice was going to be one that said “BRAZIL” but my trusty advisor said it would probably get me stabbed (soccer rivalries or whatever), so I settled on one that said “ITALIA.”
Speaking of hats, one thing I found curious was that Italian police (captains?) still use those Nazi-style Waffen SS officer hats. Something about them is very intimidating. It must be either their connotation or the fact that it adds a good 3″ to the wearer’s height.
My darling patiently waited while I took a few pictures of the fountain.
When I was done, she was nowhere to be found amongst the sea of people milling about. Panic mode– neither of us had a way to contact the other. Thankfully we found each other before long; apparently I wasn’t where she expected me to be. But before she could say any more, I offered a nearby restaurant as my response.
Our visit was cut short by a desperate need to find a bathroom. Leaving the Pantheon I thought I’d score a quick point in the Rick Steves Exotic Erotic Adventure in that there was totally a naked guy smoking a cigarette while hanging out the window of his room at the Hotel Minerva but smoking isn’t Baroque enough to count for anything.
We stopped for a second lunch at a random restaurant. The determining factor was that they had a bathroom. I don’t understand cultures that encourage consumption of copious amounts of caffeine and alcohol yet don’t facilitate the natural consequence of what always happens next.
I had a good laugh at a passing utility van that was absolutely blasting Scatman John on the radio.
They seem to really love 80s synthpop here, which I guess should be no surprise. Giorgio Moroder is one of their greatest exports.
We’re both suffering extraordinarily painful sunburns as a result of being in the sun all day. Who would have thought?
Tomorrow it’s Vat City, bitch.