This trip was also taking on a certain Dantean aspect, Italy playing Heaven/Hell Hide and Seek with me again. But after our visit to the Hub, Alexa showed me Rome through her eyes...and it's part of me now!
We looked in a whirlwind of churches, but we also walked miles on cobblestone streets, past shoe stores and gelaterias and street performers and young people hanging out around beautiful fountains, stopping in at one cousin's necktie store and another cousin's jewelry store. Something was going on at the French Embassy, I bought postcards and Limoncello for Jenny, and wherever we went, Alexa would break into friendly chatter with locals in a language I didn't understand, taking me back to those lulling childhood errands, when daddy was in charge and I could just space out and take everything in with complete trust that I was cared for.
|The sign reads: "We are against|
war and tourist menus"
It took me back to my Mambo Italiano dance...I make my Zumba students slap their booties when Rosemary Clooney sings, "Try an enchilada with a fishy Bakala." I couldn't really do that in the restaurant, but the not-shy Alexa, just as inspired, burst into her own song...
|Lust at the Borges Gallery|
It was late, but we whipped around the city looking at sights, monuments, cute cars, and stupid traffic signage. The mind boggles at the layers of history, two and a half thousand years of it. Alexa pointed out a theater with a Victorian apartment building on top of a Renaissance renovation on top of an ancient foundation.
|Adventures in renovation!|
I tagged off on the Colliseum, the Spanish Steps, and St. Peter's Basilica... from a safe distance this time around, through a secret keyhole high on a hill. We came up with prank ideas for the Bocca della Verità.
At 2am we stopped at a Cornetteria (where they sell Cornetti, of course) and picked up some pastries for Eloisa's 8th birthday breakfast, just hours away!
And at 3am, I packed my bags for the rest of my adventure.