Roma, Italia

March 5, 2003
Weather: high of about 70ºF and sunny

We walk until we drop. The ruins we want to see are not too far from our hotel by the Spanish Steps, but still we are exhausted by the end of the day. Luckily, amidst all the ruins are fancy boutiques, restaurants, and plenty of other services to keep us distracted or fed or relaxed as necessary.

First, a plain old Roman street scene. Actually, a piazza scene.
First stop is the Pantheon, the best preserved ancient building in Rome. It used to be the temple of all gods, built about 118 AD by Emperor Hadrian. But in the 7th century, Christians complained that they were harrassed by demons when they walked by. So it became a church and now it is more like the temple to all Christian gods.
Another shot of the inside of the Pantheon. It is a magnificent space. The main light comes from the round opening in the roof.
It seems like every piazza has got to have its own fountain... piazzas and fountains, piazzas and fountains, everywhere you look.
Those are two empty plates that recently held pasta, and an empty bottle of sparkling water.
Second stop is the Colosseum. The bookshop had a series of photos with transparent overlays that show what they thought it looked like in ancient Rome. It was helpful to flip through since I haven't seen Gladiator in a long time.
It really seems like a crime that the most damage to the building was done by builders of other buildings who dismantled it for the marble and brick it contained. It had room for 55,000 spectators.
That's it, we're exhausted after all that walking. We are saved from dragging ourselves through the Roman Forum by the fact that it is closed. This is a shot some monument or other on the way home. (It is a monument built in honor of the unification of Italy in 1870.)

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