Published: March 8th 2011January 5th 2011
Most people who know me know that Rome is my favorite place in the world. Rome and I started our love affair three years ago, which may or may not have something to do with the fact that about the same time that Keith and I really started ours. So it comes as no surprise that on this third trip to Rome, Keith and I got engaged!
We arrived in Rome completely ecstatic. Our night train from Munich was fun and new, but we woke up to the Italian countryside flying by and we were full of anticipation. As we rubbed the sleep out of our eyes, looking out into the familiar landscapes and knowing full well that within an hour we'd be pulling into Termini, we forgot about Germany and waited until we stepped back into the cobbled streets of Rome. Coming back to Rome felt like a warm embrace, full of familiar smells and sentiments. It didn't matter that we slept on hard cots on the top bunks of a 6-bed sleeper train, hadn't showered yet or changed our clothes. What mattered is that we were back in our adopted home, Rome.
We made our way to
our trusty Stargate hotel, and thought, was it just a year that we were walking down the same street, shrieking with pleasure about how familiar it felt? The same cafes, the same market, the same laundry/internet cafe. Who would have ever thought that within one year we'd be back in Italy. It was a dream! A dream which didn't compare to what happened within the next few hours.
As soon as we did some housekeeping (laundry, shower, caffe e croissant), we ventured out back into the streets. We swung by Colosseo (remembering the first time we stepped out of the Metro and saw the monument three years ago), the Forum, Spanish Steps and finally Ponte Sant'Angelo. Surprise, surprise... in the most romantic, unplanned way possible Keith proposed as we put a new lock on my favorite bridge, underneath the angels I love to photograph, steps away from a couple of girls playing an accordion and violin. It was intimate and romantic, and perfectly fitting for our relationship. Even though it wasn't a complete surprise, we walked around giddy and in shock that we were lucky enough to have found each other. Our giddiness guided us right to our favorite
Roman past-time: Irish pubs! After celebrating there for a while, still in slight disbelief, we ventured out into Trastevere and ended up having one of the best dinners in a little restaurant we randomly found. I firmly believe that Trastevere has the best restaurants... not only are they so cute inside, and so inexpensive, but the quality is unbelievable. While our decadent meal at Sora Lella last year was amazing, we spent a quarter as much in Trastevere and had an equally fabulous meal and bottle of wine. Viva Italia!
We spent the next few days revisiting many of our favorite places (Largo Argentina, Isola Tiburtina), checking things we've always wanted to do (Nutella Donut in Navona!), and exploring new places more thoroughly (Trastevere). The beauty of Rome is found walking the streets, getting lost, and uncovering delightful places never to be found on a map. It would take more than a lifetime to uncover most of Rome's secrets. It's spent millennia tucking away gems all over the city. We never needed a reason to ever come back and explore more of the secrets, but now we have even more of a reason to come back more often. While
we most likely won't be back within this year, we definitely have an ideal place to visit during our honeymoon! Planning has never been so easy!
There are more photos below