Europe . Italy . Rome: Ciao, yo

Thursday, September 30th, 2006

So this was our last day in Rome. Very sad. Also very busy.

We were hoping to go to two museums and take a tour. Luckily the first museum wanted to go to, Museo Borghese, required reservations and we had none -- AWESOME! The second museum, Capitolini Museo, caught my eye the previous day as were going into the Fori Romano ruins. In one of its windows was the backside of a very attractive statue (if I had the ability, I would have made some sort of "cat call" to let the statue know I enjoyed its appearance... but I don't, so I didn't). So yea, we went to this museum to satisfy my need to see this statue (also for general educational purposes). After attempting to read some italian scribbles describing historic stuff, we gave up on the educational portion of the visit and moved on to the gawking at statues. Quite impressive what these sculptors could create (though I'm fairly certain if I disappeared into the tibetan mountains for a decade or three I could produce something of equivalent quality..). After an hour or so, it occurred to me that we would soon have to move on to the meeting point for the tour... but I still hadn't found my statue! Breaking into a light jog, that drew more than a few stares we quickly started to make our way through the remainder of the museum. Then BAM! Jenny spots it. Or something she thinks is it. You see, what she saw was the male counterpart to my beautiful female statue. She argued for a little while that the male sculpture was in fact the one I had been cooing for the past several hours, but in the end she was forced to cede to my juggernaut will. I will admit that the statue she pointed out had some vaguely attractive hermaphroditic qualities, but it was certainly not mine. In the end we left the museum unable to find my elusive aphrodite. Truly a tragedy.

Moving on to the tour, we were greeted by our tour guide Zoe. An immigrant from the UK, Zoe spoke brilliantly comprehensible english (a real treat after weeks of dealing with the painful Anglo-italo language barrier). We first visited a cathedral that contained the chains that had held St.Peter. The had spikes, which I thought were a bit kinky for a holy man, but I decided not to judge, lest I be judged. Next, we went to the catacombs of Rome. There are supposedly three major catacombs near Rome, all claiming to be the biggest. After the tour of them I was satisfied that we had in fact sifted through the lies to find the biggest. Inside I found they weren't as impressive as the ones in Paris. Though slightly larger, they lacked the piles of bones that made the Parisien ones so cool (NOTE: I am not a necrophiliac). Next, we went to the Circo Maximo (Maximus? Maximi? Maximici?.. Can't quite recall, but they were definitely, "Circo to the MAX"...). Mostly just a dirty circle, Zoe provided some artists' renditions of what the track would have like in it's heyday. Neato. Finally we went to the Jewish Ghetto. Our tour guide lived in this part of Rome and I suspect she ended the tour here so that she was in walking distance of her residence. But nevermind that. The ghetto was chalked full of stuff. Like fountains, restaurants, cars... Jewish people... There was also a rather impressive set of ruins that was occupied by cats (NOTE: the Italian government actually gives tax rebates to citizens who feed the homeless cat population; our tour guide said this was done in gratitude to the felines for saving Rome from diseased rats in the middle ages -- THANKS!). Zoe also mentioned at one point that we were near where Caesar had been assassinated, which was morbidly intriguing.

That is all.

- Either Tyler or Jenny... you decide -

P.S. Just as a sidenote, I need to mention the over abundance of "preggo-ing" found in Rome (and Italy in general). Traditionally this word is means "your welcome" or "no problemo" or some such... But it has evolved in such a way that it can be used as a catch-all response:

Example A
Person #1: "Gosh, thanks for helping pointing out the poo I almost stepped in!"
Person #2: "Preggo!"

Example B
Person #1: "Mmm, that meal was delicious!"
Person #2: "Hrmm, preggo."

Example C
Person #1: "Excuse, where can find a bathroom?"
Person #2: "PregGOOOO"

Example D
Person #1: "Ouch. I seem to be bleeding from my head. Please get me some medical assistance."
Person #2: "Ci ci. Preggo." ("ci" = "yes")

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