Interesting Observations of Rome – Part 2


It is now September 4th, and we have had picture perfect, cloudless 90 degree weather every single day.

Today, we decided to walk to the Spanish Steps. I was not amazed, but pleasantly surprised by all the high end shops surrounding the steps: Gucci, Vendi, Prada, Bulgari – you name it – it was there. We took some great pictures of the Spanish steps. Here are a few on this blog:

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When we got to the top of the steps, the rose guy was there. I swear, he is everywhere. Again, he offered me to take a rose and I told him to shove it.

Then two guys started making conversation with us. They were selling paintings. Next thing you know, one of the guys takes Dave’s wrist and starts weaving a friendship bracelet on his left wrist. One string was for love.  The other for friendship. They did the same to me after they did Dave’s. We won’t divulge the amount of money these friendship bracelets costs, but let’s just say we got suckered.

And, yes. We cut them off when we got back to the hotel.

We stopped at a bar at the top of the steps across from an extremely high end hotel and had a cappuccino. Well, I had a cappuccino, capuccinoand then wandered past through the shops. Fur is not a fashion f aux pas here. It’s EVERYWHERE.  I couldn’t help myself but walk into a perfume shop to buy something for Dave and I. It was our little extravagance to indulge in smelling good and to also try to disguise the stench of sweat.

We both agreed that we had never sweated so much before in our entire lives on a trip. However, when you log about four miles a day walking in 90 degree heat, you’re going to give your sweat glands a workout.

After a delicious lunch, we came back to our hotel to shower and change clothes for the Vatican. If you recall in my earlier post, we had attempted to visit the Vatican on our first day, but I wasn’t properly dressed. This time I wasn’t taking any chances and wore my burqua.

As I was waiting for Dave and having a glass of wine in our hotel room, I was watching CNN. I started comparing it to what I see in the United States. In a span of two minutes I saw commercials for Qatar Airlines, Singapore Airlines and a commercial for a South African Bank. If I were to watch two minutes of commercials on CNN in the states, it would be mostly about other CNN programs and the occasional Bank of America commercial.

Americans are extremely polarized. We see snippets of nationwide news during the evening news. Otherwise, you would have to watch the BBC on cable to get the real deal. It’s sad. I’m disheartened that I live in a nation that puts us in a box and doesn’t broadcast worldwide news AND commercials 24/7. It stifles our mindset.

So what if it doesn’t appeal to your target audience? Excuse me, but isn’t America the “melting pot?” I think need to lighten up a little. Get rid of reality TV programming and show Americans what it’s like in other parts of the world. National Geographic channel isn’t enough.

Anyway, we went schlepping around since the wait at the Vatican was over two hours. The line was extremely long, and I didn’t want a perfectly good shower to go to waste. So, what did we do? We found a bar! A nice outdoor bar where I decided to order a martini (my first on the trip). What I received in return was lighter fluid with an olive. I then asked for a bit of cranberry to lighten up the lighter fluid and it wasn’t much better. At least I got an olive. However, I think it was actually a fuse.

I mentioned before that the people here are very dog friendly. There are mostly mixed breeds with some evident health issues, but they seemed loved and cared for. Dave and I decided to wake up early tomorrow to get to the Vatican before it gets swarmed with people so we can get some nice shots. The last thing I want is a tour group getting in my shot of all the monuments Bernini sculpted.

Dave’s Observations

– Stores sell a lot of camouflage clothing and puffy jackets.

– I feel sorry for pigeons with suspected neck problems

– Everybody smokes. People, dogs, pigeons, babies – you name it.

Dave’s Fashion Minute

I’ve observed the following fashion exploits:

  1. Better than average “red carpet” walk
  2. How much of my butt cheeks should I show (this would be weather dependent)
  3. How tight can I get everything (counts as an annual ob/gyn appointment)
  4. Spandex and tight clothes are a privilege not a right.
  5. All the men wear their collars up, like wearing a tie in a polo shirt or short sleeve shirt.
  6. Men wear loafers all the time with no socks.

Dave’s Meat Minute:

I am enamored with prepared cured meats. I don’t care what they are cured of, I’ll eat them. There also isn’t not much of a selection of red meat, but that likely explains the lack of purebred dogs.

Dave’s Traffic Minute:

I can’t get over women in business attire buzzing around on scooters like a BMX Redbull race. However, they do use their turn signals. Also, if cars or people see an ambulance with their sirens and lights flashing, their mindset is, “Fuck it. I’m not moving.” There is also no regard to people in the crosswalk. When that light starts flashing and you are halfway through the crosswalk you better haul your ass to the other side, or you’ll be a road bumper.

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