Thursday, September 10, 2015

David LaChapelle, Villa Borghese and WB?

Day 2

Today I slept in for a very long time and missed my planned visit to the Colosseum.  I shrugged it off, after all I've been on the go just about every single day of this vacation.  I deserve to take some time if I want to, right?!  I start off my day by heading across the street to get some pasta.  Then I start walking down the street behind the restaurant I just ate to explore a bit.  I found a beautiful church that had several different altars that each paid tribute to different times and people.  The feel there was solemn and safe as I explored throughout the church.  There weren't a lot of people here, which made it nice to see what it was all about.  

I walked further down the road and ended up at the famous Trevi Fountain, which was super cool - even though they are renovating it and you cannot see it for it's full glory.  There were so many people there it was distracting, so I headed off toward a cool little street off the other side.  

I walked through different streets, wandering really until I ended up on a main street and then found a cool museum featuring David LaChapelle, an american Photographer who is well known for taking pop culture and turning it on it's side to reveal deeper social issues.  I wander through the Palazzo delle Esposizioni (a beautiful building built in 1883) and drink in his sometimes disturbing images, the vibrant colors and sharp photos emanating so much emotion.  Fascinating.

I decided from there that I wanted to see the famous Villa Borghese Gardens, so on goes the GPS and off I go.  I walk through this private banking section of Rome with these big mansion houses that have signs in front of them stating that they are private banking.  I wonder how that works, how people with that much money go to these places to do things, if at all.  It is clear the area is full of some very serious money, with the giant mansions, gates and cameras everywhere.  I even find a Warner Brothers lot along my way!

The gardens are full of life, even at dusk when I arrive.  There are runners (both male and female) heading into the park and throughout the park.  The grounds are gorgeous.  I wander through the park, taking photos and enjoying the view.  Soon I realize it's getting really dark and I need to figure out how to head back to my hotel, and get some food.

I find a little Italian restaurant on my way back, nestled among some very high end hotels.  I try some pizza and green apple juice and enjoy the warm evening while listening to a British couple on my left and a Scottish mother/daughter on my right.  It was interesting catching brief parts of both conversations while I enjoyed my dinner.  I made my way back to my hotel and I wasn't quite ready to go in.

I walked past my hotel about a quarter mile to the Colosseum, and wandered around the entire perimeter.  I found a bride and groom on one side, taking photos with the lighted colosseum behind them.  I'm sure they had stunning photos.  My feet were killing me, so I decided to go back to the restaurant row near my hotel for a treat - a bit of ice cream before turning in for the night.  I cannot miss the epic day I have planned for tomorrow!!


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