14th June 2017

Note to self: Wonder off the beaten path once in a while, you’ll be surprised with what you find.

What. A. Day. My feet are so unbelievably sore from such an intense day of walking, but it was a great day so I’m not complaining, much.

Mary Catherine, who is originally from Alabama, whose accent I love, is sleeping in the bunk above me in my dorm in Rome. Last night, at the very last minute I asked her if she wanted to grab a drink, she repaid the favour by inviting me along to her adventure today. In a town called Tivoli, about 30km outside of Rome, you can find two UNESCO heritage sites, Villa Adriana and Villa d’Este.

Full disclosure, I’m partially intoxicated and it’s 1:40am so I don’t have the energy to research and report, but very important emperors in very early Rome lived in these complexes. I was very excited, though nowhere near as excited as MC, to venture off the beaten path and explore. 

After a tram, a bus, a side trip for cherry tomatoes and crackers, and a taxi that should have been a bus we finally arrived at Villa Adriana. Even now, as I sit here thinking about what I saw today I’m still lost for words. The site was MASSIVE, the structures beyond extravagant and the whole place just gave me absolute chills. 

I’m just going to dump a whole bunch of photos here that I’m happy to discuss in person. 

The bath that’s bigger than my house…

MC, my personal tour guide, standing in front of the giant entertainment quarters…

Grecian influences…

The Greek library…

The amazing marble flooring still intact after thousands of years…

Afterwards we headed back to the town centre to visit the gardens of Ville d’Este. I was absolutely mesmerised by the water features and landscaping of the gardens, we were totally captivated for the 2 hours we were there. 

We spent nearly 2 hours getting back from Tivoli, after absolutely legging it for the bus so we didn’t have to wait another 30 minutes, direct quote from MC “damn girl, you can run!”

A few naps along the way and a series of loud sirens and bangs that completely had us disoriented, and we had arrived back in Rome. We stopped off at the grocery store for some snacks and cheap wine while we decided what to do in the evening. With no cups in the hostel I MacGyver’d a few out of an old plastic bottle. 

Wanting to have a fun night, as well as getting to know more people in our dorm room MC and I invited the rest of our dorm out for pizza and drinks. We went to Dar Poerta in the Trastevere region and ate way too much pizza, drank far too much wine and had a great time getting to know one another. 

The pizza was absolutely delicious and the trastevere region was beautiful. We stopped off for my 20th scoop of gelato at fatamorgana as well, hazelnut,gianduia and lemon curd, all very good. 

Andreas, Carla and Sebastien are from Argentina and Mexico City and it was hysterical to see their English fade away and their Spanish take over as more and more drinks were consumed. It was an absolutely hilarious and fun night!!! Especially watching 5 drunk people trying to climb 5 flights of stairs while trying to stay silent….

Now for some sleep! 

Buona notte!

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