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Published: June 25th 2012
Day 43 and only 5 more sleeps in Europe......
We woke slowly after our walking tour yesterday and decided to do the Colloseum today. Wondered down to the Tiber river and walked along that. Not as nice as the other capital city rivers we have seen but still had some interesting parts. As we walked along the banks there was a camp under a bridge with about 5 people and 3 very large dogs. They were fishing and didn't seem interested in us which was good for us as they looked very dodgy.
Walked up to the "orange mountain" where they say the first orange tree in Rome was grown. Seems strange to see a mini orange grove in the city but the views were also very good. Overlooked St Peters basilica and a few other buildings that we had looked at yesterday from a different angle.
On to the Colloseum and we join a short queue. Winner... Not to be as the short queue just gets you in to the longer queue under the Colloseum arcades. As the queue moves in an orderly fashion we don't feel too bad until you get close to the ticket office where the queue turns into disorganized chaos. 2 lines become a bunch of people just shoving for a place - bit like the gents toilets at the MCG on grand final day....
We get our tickets and do the steep steps to the 2nd level of thColloseum and are amazed by the grandeur of this ruin. More interesting was the facts displayed about Nero setting fire to Rome and then blaming the Christians - now makes sense when they say that Nero fiddled while Rome burnt.....
After our walk around the miles of corridors we were a bit hot so decided that he hop on hop off bus was really a good idea, especially the one with the sliding roof on the top deck. This arrives as we get to the bus stop so get on.
Do the streets and see a bit of Rome we hadn't got to yet. Worth the money. Back to the hotel and realize that Italy are playing England in the soccer tonight. In for a busy night. Find a new restaurant - not hard to do here - and sit next to an Aussie family who are speaking to a couple from England (all decked out in their white wih English flags as well - either brave or stupid methinks......).
Probably the best food we have had in Rome tonight. Then into the Piazza Navonna to do some people watching and get our gelato fix. Painters, men with the lit whirlybird things they flick in the air, spray paint artists, etc. And then the restaurants with the soccer on, all packed with people watching.
As we leave the game is nearly finished so we head home to watch the last bits - zero all at the moment. Get in and the game goes into extra time and still no result so penalty goal shoot out. Italy finally win and the place erupts outside. Screaming, horns, etc. a busy night on the streets ahead of us.
Probably lucky that Italy won as we have been picked as English more times than not so we would have been in lots of trouble if England had won........
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