Day 9: The Eternal City and Our Search For The Truth

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June 12th 2013
Published: July 12th 2013
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Bus into RomeBus into RomeBus into Rome

I do tell people we got pretty close on this bus
Woke up that morning looking forward to the day because I have always wanted to see Rome but kept putting it off for other cities. After breakfast we waited for the bus and Kate advised we would all have to fit into this bus. Considering there was over 40 of us it was going to be a tight fit. That turned out to be an understatement as you can see in the picture. I ended in more or less in Aileen's (Australia) lap. She and others were very cool about the tight quarters we had on the bus. Funniest part was when a few nuns had to squeeze into the bus as well.

After 20-30 minutes of this we all pushed off the bus at the Metro stop and got into the Metro cars which I expected to be packed as well but there was plenty of space. We got off at Spagna station and Kate started our tour of Rome. To make sure no one got lost we used the duck hand signal which is more effective than flags or umbrellas. What you do is the tour leader raises her hand above her head and uses her fingers like a duck's mouth. The people behind her repeat the signal down the line and so no matter how far back you are you will always see someone doing that signal.

Rome is impressive as I thought it would be. Spanish Steps, Trevi fountain, Gelato, Caesar's statue, Roman Forum all followed one after the other and I took a lot of pictures of each. I also did the tossing of the coin backwards in Trevi fountain so that I would return someday. There was apparently a lot of good shopping near the Spanish Steps and I will give it a try next time I am Rome. It was really hot in Rome that day. Wandering around Rome we had to contend with traffic which was not always easy to do. We ended the tour in Roman Colosseum which impressed me just by looking at it. Considering it was built almost 2000 years ago without any of the modern equipment we use today made it even more impressive.

Underneath the shade of some trees near the Colosseum Kate ended our tour and told us how to get back to the Campgrounds and we all broke off into our groups. Today's group would be Myself, Christine, Sam, Stephen (Australia), Patrina, Kelly, Zakiyya, Haylee, Megan Campbell, and David (Mexico). First chance I had to hang out with Stephen and David. They were 2 really great guys as well. David was one of 3 people from Mexico and according to the ladies a really good dancer. Stephen is a bit quieter and as I found out was also religious like myself. We went to lunch after that and I grabbed some pasta for the first time since I got to Italy. I had high expectations for my first Italian pasta experience so I guess I was setting myself up for disappointment.

We opted for the Colosseum first and it is even more impressive from the inside. Multiple levels and each one was filled with antiques and relics. I honestly could of wandered around the place for hours or even days. It was my favourite time in Rome and I will go there again next time I am in Rome. With our large group it was hard to coordinate with everyone so we all agreed to meet up outside of the Colosseum at pre determined time. By the time we headed out of the Colosseum I had lost sight of everyone but Patrina. We waited for everyone at the spot outside of the Colosseum. Once everyone gathered again we all decided to do different things. Megan Campbell, Haylee, and Kelly went shopping while the rest of us went looking for an attraction called the Mouth of Truth. Supposedly this statue has a hole in the mouth and you put your hand through it and if you are honest person you don't lose your hand. Probably just a legend but we went in search of it.

Finding it turned out to be a bit tricky. Sam was leading us at this point and somewhere along the line we must have taken a wrong turn because once we reached a park we realized we were a long way off from where we wanted to be. We took a break in the park at that point and we tried to ask a few people including a police officer where it was but we got contradictory advise. Finally we doubled back and found the correct route. There was no real sign out front so it was very minimalist. The line looked pretty long and we were debating whether to go in but ultimately we had come this far already we might as well wait. Line went pretty quickly and soon we were facing the mouth of truth. It was circular carving with a man's face carved on it. 50 cent euros was the cost to do this so we all paid up and got our pictures. None of us lost our hands so as it turns out we are all good and honest people.

It was getting late at that point so we decided to head back to the campgrounds. At the Metro stop near the Colosseum we ran into Ashleigh (Australia) and Bron (Australia). I remember that they were friends who came on this trip together and Bron was a Psychiatrist and I thought had an interesting name. I kept forgetting to ask her the origins of her name. Anyway we took the Metro back where our bus should have been. After asking a few of the locals and wandering about we asked a nice Italian lady who told us a faster bus to get to where we wanted. On faith alone we boarded the bus and we actually made it back to the grounds in good time.

I got back to my cabin and since Ken and I were not in the same group so he was suppose to leave our 1 key under the steps of our cabin. I looked around and even lifted up the wooden steps but they were not there. Ken was not back yet so I could not ask him so I ended up just splashing around the pool until dinner. Dinner that night was served by Topdeck cooks and was good as usual. Ken still wasn't back after dinner so I ended up just paying 5 Euros for a 2nd key. Ken turned up later in the evening and he realized he had the key in his pocket after we separated in Rome, not a big deal and I got my 5 Euros back when I returned the key. The rest of that evening was spent by pool and taking sips out of buckets of alcohol. The buckets were actually pretty tasty so I reminded myself to get one in Venice.

There was something called a Gangsters and Slappers party that night at the bar but as usual I skipped it because I was not
Trevi FountainTrevi FountainTrevi Fountain

Throw a coin over your shoulder and you will return to Rome
interested. Was kept awake as usual by the noise from the party and this time I actually heard Get Lucky by Daft Punk being sung by everyone at the bar. Fan of the song but I wanted sleep so I put my head under the bed and did my best to drown out the noise.

Additional photos below
Photos: 17, Displayed: 17


Group at ColosseumGroup at Colosseum
Group at Colosseum

Christine, Sam, Stephen, Me, Patrina, Kelly, MJ, Zakiyya, Haylee, Megan Campbell, David
Mouth of TruthMouth of Truth
Mouth of Truth

Put your hand in and if you are honest you won't lose it

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