Italy Day 1 continued...

December 29, 2011

Yesterday we left off eating pizza across from the Trevi Fountain. 
After visiting Barberini, the Spanish Steps, and Trevi Fountain our group began walking towards the Victor Emmanuael II Monument. 
 This is the first of many pictures of the Colosseum and the Victor Emmanuel Monument. Above is the VEM. It is absolutely massive. I thought it was huge on the outside, once I got inside I quite literally got lost.  But that is a story for another post.
 I can't remember what this is called. It is across from Il Vittoriano, but is not considered the Forum. But then again we zipped past the "unimportant" landmarks and hit all the major ones. I was very surprised to find out Ancient Rome was smack dab in the middle of town. Busy streets surround it. While walking down the sidewalk it is a very odd feeling to be standing next to something so ancient on the right while Fiats drive by amongst hundreds of motorcycles to the left. 

 I just couldn't get over the detail here. Even the broken buildings and columns are still beautiful. It is very strange to touch marble and stone sculptures from the 1st century AD and even further back.

 Looking down into the Forum. 
 This column just amazed me, along with many others throughout this trip. The idea that details could stand the test of time...and a bunch of Italians burying the city just blows my mind. 
 Jeremy in front of the Il Vittoriano (Victor Emmanuel Monument) which was built to honor the first king of unified Italy. Supposedly the Italians hate this building, it is too Western. Our tour guide Christina called it the Wedding Cake, which after that I was unable to think of its real name. 
 Walking across the road to this was where Elle threw out there that we should "walk with conviction". Which even though I continued to walk like a scared American who was taught to look both ways, I can say I tried my hardest. I is just so hard to step out into fast Roman traffic without looking. When we did look the cars would rev their engines and kind of jump forward letting us know we were about to be squashed. My apprehension to step out in front of cars is what led to my unfortunate incident in Napoli a few days later.
 Wandering towards the Forum and Colosseum.
 The streets look oddly clear here. I promise you it was crazy 90% of the time.
 First sight of the Colosseum! I was stunned to see it smack dab in the middle of a busy street with Italians walking by paying it no mind. What was ancient and stunning to me was apparently everyday and mundane to them. I promise though, one day in Louisiana and they would be begging for something from even the 1800's.
 This was about as Christmas-y as Rome got.

Today I will leave you here, almost through day one with our group waiting outside the Colosseum to meet Christina. I thought we would finish Day 1 today, but the pictures seem to be too much for the blogger uploader all at once. Next we will hopefully finish up Ancient Rome with the Forum, Colosseum, dispel a myth about Christians in the Colosseum, and why an excavation of Ancient Rome was needed in the first place. 

Post catch up:
Italy Day 1: Barberini