Published: July 23rd 2012July 23rd 2012
I arrived in Rome on Saturday afternoon, quite tired, but excited to be there. I had enjoyed the flight, sitting beside a mother of three teenagers, who still appeared to be about my age, and we exchanged stories and chatted for quite a lot of the flight. I tried to sleep on the plane, and dozed for maybe about 3 hours in total. Bleary-eyed, I picked up my luggage, headed for the bus to Terminal Station, and proceeded to look for my hostel. My Rome guide book was buried in my big backpack, because I'd moved many things the day before in order for the carry-on bag to make the 5kg weight limit. They didn't even weigh it! Anyway, I had thought I knew where I was going, but after 10 minutes of walking with my two backpacks, I decided to stop and dig through my things to find the book. I was able to locate my hostel very quickly after that!
I took a shower, changed clothes, and went off in search of food. I got some pizza (big suprise!) and walked over to the Repubblica where there was a fountain. I tried to use my borrowed global phone to call my mom, and it worked without any problem!
After a little more walking around, I realized that I needed a nap because I was exhausted. I walked back to the hostel and fell asleep for 2 hours. A little more refreshed, I went out to see Trevi Fountain, the Spanish steps and get some food and gelato. The night was a bit tough because the guy in the bed beside me in the dorm snored big time! Even ear plugs didn't seem to help.
The next day, I decided to see the Roman Forum, Palatine Hill, and the Colosseum, as they are all on one ticket. I spent a lot of time at the Forum and never having been to Palatine Hill, checked that out. Realizing a bit too late that I needed sunscreen, I put that on, and went to the Colosseum. From there I went to the Pantheon, got some more gelato (a staple in Italy!) and walked back to a Metro station to go back to the hostel. I took out my contacts, rested for a few minutes, and then headed to Trastavere for dinner. Either I didn't know where to go, or I picked poorly, the restaurant was only so-so. I found that I was ignored, and treated with disdain when I ordered. Perhaps you need to be more than one person to be treated reasonably well? I took the bus back to the hostel, organized for today, and went to sleep. This time, I was able to sleep much better because I was already asleep by the time my roommate started his snoring. :)
I got up early, got ready to go to the train station, and discovered en route that it was raining! Glad I'd packed an umbrella and put it in a handy place. The six hour train ride to Milan was spent dozing and got to my hostel without any problems. They offered me a welcome drink, and showed me to my room. It has its own terrace, and there are lockers under the bottom bunk. We have our own washroom (6 beds in the room) and they lent me a laptop to use tonight. Breakfast is also included in the price!
After making my bed, I headed out to see the Duomo (cathedral) and wander around the city. The castle was impressive, but most of the other buildings that were suggested as photogenic were not, in my opinion, terribly photogenic. The domed shopping centre is quite nice, but some of the other locations were just so-so.
I'm off to Toulouse by plane tomorrow and spending almost a week in that region. Looking forward to speaking French, and eating French sandwiches and pastries!