I believe the power of a full night sleep can settle wars, or at very least ease tensions. The first day of travel after a full night sleep is a wonderful thing. We hit Rome and focused on getting things right for our first full day overseas.
We stayed in Trastevere and if anyone is planning to visit Rome anytime soon, this is where you want to stay. Ignore all other advice and stay around here. It is the university district, an up and coming area of Rome, still very close to the city centre but, most importantly not too touristy. There are tourists because well, it’s Rome, however; there are not people dressed as roman soldiers. It is also multicultural; with the universities around the area you’ll notice a great deal of different accents. But this pales compared to the nightlife, after dark this place comes alight cafés and bars absorb the narrow cobbled laneways and throngs of people breath life into these old roman streets.
We are trying to focus this trip on avoiding the tourist trail to which we haven’t completely succeeded. But some things are touristy for a reason the views from The Equestrian monument dedicated to Giuseppe Garibaldi are amazing to look over Rome and see this sprawling ancient city, from here one can easily imagine how this city breathed, flourished, existed and endured over centuries. I love this shit.
To further the avoidance of tourists I decided to get up at 6.30am and head to an Irish pub in the middle of Rome. Because this is where I could watch the AFL Grand Final. The game was pretty forgettable but an Irish pub in the middle of Italy packed with 200 other expats drink and yelling that early in the morning is certainly an experience. Did I mention it was an Irish pub in the middle of Rome! How great was Franklin, dynasty…
“Leaving Rome, life was never good to me, leaving Rome…” not really, but, as we pack up for departure on some classic Italian transport, story to come. We remember Rome as a much more enjoyable than last time. We tried to stay off the beaten track more than last time and remembering the proper long lunch with had with friends. Multiple courses and bottles of wine made for a great afternoon in the capital. But now we must leave. Harder said than done…
Our first real disaster. We really did experience a classic Italian train experience; get dropped off at the wrong station and after walking with all our luggage to the corrected departure ‘lounge’ we were suitably informed of the train cancellation. We were then offered three options, the Rome underground, a regional train… ‘oh sorry that has left’ or fed for ourselves with a cab. The private train company was only going to pay for the underground option. We took the cab option. In the end we got the replacement train fine and the taxi wasn’t too expensive but the lack of forethought from the operating line was classic Italian transport.
TL:DR don’t catch Italo trains.
Onward to Firenze!