Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Day Five (June 13)

Today, we traveled to Rome and stayed there for the entire day.

At around 5:00 in the morning, Madeline Stewart, Erin Kreindler, Rachel Owens, and I woke up. We had to be downstairs at 5:45, ready to leave to go to the train station. Everyone was downstairs before 7, so we headed to the bust stop to wait for our ride to the Florence Train Station. When we got to the station, we stopped for a quick pastry and coffee at a tiny café. We grabbed our food and boarded the train on cart number ten, once again. The train ride was two hours long to the beautiful city of Rome. The time went by fast because I sat next to Claire Hogan, Rachel Owens, Ms Cannon and Ms Hartman. It was a fun ride as we got to listen to all of the interesting and funny stories told by Ms Hartman, Claire or Rachel.

We arrived in Rome and stopped off at another cute little pastry café called Paraná Caffé, where we ordered chocolate croissants, tea and coffees. It was amazing! We finished up our sweets and headed on to actually see the famous Coliseum. I was blown away. I have been studying about the Coliseum for about two years, so when you actually get to see what you have been studying, it is mind-blowing.

This is a picture of the cafe that we ate at before the coliseum. 

This is a picture of Claire Hogan drinking her coffee at the Parana Cafe.

As we walked up to the beautiful Coliseum, I could not believe it. It was just so neat to tie in what you already know about the area and photograph it. Knowing about the history helps in the understanding of how amazing these places actually are. We went in through the main entrance as a group to go see the insides of the arena. When I first walked in, I immediately noticed the brickwork and how worn away it is. When I photographed this fantastic piece of history, my reoccurring element was the age in the stone and brickwork. It was very nice to be able to see the Coliseum because it was incredible.

These pictures were taken at the Coliseum.

After that adventure, we headed on over to the Forum. It was just an old plaza area where there used to be shops, areas to relax, etc. Today, the Forum is just pieces of columns, walls, statues, and floors spread all over a significantly sized area. We stayed there for about an hour and we were off to lunch.

These pictures were taken at the Forum.

This is a picture of Madeline Stewart and Rachel Owens.
Massimo, one of the National Geographic Leaders tried to skip lunch and wanted to go right on to the Trevi Fountain, but all of us girls insisted on eating before. And that’s what we did.

We stopped off at a buffet type restaurant where we got some VEGETABLES! Since I have been in Italy, all I have eaten is pasta, bread, pizza, sandwiches, and carbohydrates, but to see the option of vegetables was like water in a desert.

After finishing our lunch, we stopped off to exchange our American dollars for Euros. It took about one hour and thirty minutes just to convert our money, and some of the girls were not even able to because their debit cards did not work on the ATM machines.

We got our money situation cleared up, so we went on to the Trevi Fountain. When I saw this amazing fountain, I though of the Lizzie McGuire Movie and how Hillary Duff meets Paolo in that area. Getting to see this was an experience of a lifetime, just like the whole trip in general. When I think about how we have learned and seen these places from pictures, I don’t realize how fascinating they are until I actually go and see it. This was one of those instances.

We finished up at the Trevi Fountain and went shopping in the local markets. I bought a few things for my family and myself as well.

The Pantheon and the Spanish Steps were the conclusion to our day in Rome. I had a great time and wouldn’t have traded it for anything, even though our feet were really sore. It was worth every bit of it.

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