Aly's Spain Adventure

Read about what I'm doing while in Spain so you can keep up with me!

Location: Des Moines, Iowa, United States

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Fri. Nov. 17
Day 1 in Rome
Ok so I just looked back at the last blog I wrote & I totally forgot a VERY important part! Basically the whole time mom & Catie were visiting (for like 2 or 3 days at least) there was something going on right by my street (basically my street, just right off of it), some kind of filming. So we kept seeing it as we would walk by so finally we were like "I live nearby I was just curious if you could tell me what's going on here." The guy was like "You know what the Bourne Identity & the Bourne Supremacy are right?" and we were like of course. He showed us his badge & was like "This is the 3rd one-The Bourne Ultimatum." Holy cow!!! Matt Damon was there! We tried to take some photos but since it was night time they didn't show up too well. So when everyone sees the movie & there is a blue-ish car & they're just filming sitting in the car, yeah that's my street!

So Friday morning we got up BRIGHT & EARLY (Our cab picked us up at about 5am). We got to the airport on time & all & actually had a very nice ride in our taxi with a very nice cab driver. I actually saw one of my friends from Madrid in the airport too so that was kind of crazy. We arrived around 9 or something like that. I had been sick all week and of course I had to go on vacation sick too so that was a bummer. From the airport we caught a shuttle bus to our hotel & met a lady who was riding w/ us & she's from Finland. She was nice & we all chatted & eventually got dropped off right near our hotel. There was some kind of a strike/demonstration going on so we had to walk about a block to our hotel because the driver couldn't drive us there. It was a very nice place, pretty large with a very nice bathroom. So we were all ready for lunch so we grabbed some at the restaurant right next to our hotel which was kind of fancy. Real Italian food is so yummy. Of course with every single meal you get bread. They also do something, instead of tipping, they add a cover charge or sometimes it's called a service charge. Unfortunately we didn't figure this out right away so we gave some REALLY big tips on accident. Oh well.
So we decided to go find a tour bus so we could see everything in the city & it also doubled as our form of transportation since the city is pretty large. Grandma & grandma had told us not to get the "green ones" so we wanted to get this red one which went to a lot of places as well as it actually had a second bus service which went to the outskirts of rome to the catacombs & aqueducts. Unfortunately we figured out the red bus people were on strike so we had to get the green bus. So we hopped on the green bus & started our tour. We decided that we wanted to do the Colosseum first so we got off on that stop. There's a really big arch by the Colosseum which we took some photos of but of course now I can't remember what it was for. So we were approached by some "gladiators" who asked if we wanted to take a photo. Assuming they were with the Colosseum we said sure & took 2 photos. They then told us (after taking the photos) that it's 10 euros. We were like what?! They said "it's our job & we pay taxes" & we were like whatever dude. We did give them 5 euro but not all of it. Shouldn't even have given them anything! People will do anything to trick you. Oh well. So we went to enter the Colosseum & found that it was closed even though on the sign it said we had a whole nother hour. We were like what is the deal?! Well it turns out there was another movie being filmed there! It's called Jumper & it has Hayden Christensen (he was Anakin in the new Star Wars) & Samuel L. Jackson in it. Unfortunately we didn't get to really see anything but I found out later about an hour after we left they filmed the movie OUTSIDE OF THE COLOSSEUM so we could have seen it! Oh well, we'll live. So from the Colosseum we walked for a bit & ended up discovering the Roman Form & Imperial Forum. We learned in a tour later that they are the oldest cities/first cities of Rome. They began being built in about 50 B.C. One of the cool things about Rome is that is how it is all over the city, just random bits of old city that is discovered & just blocked off with a gate. We actually saw some people excavating more of the Roman Forum which is not completely discovered yet. How crazy right? Super cool! So after that we went to this little tomb area that was also a prison/dungeon & went down in to see it. It ended up not being much but it was neat. We headed back towards the Colosseum to see it at night & to also catch our tour bus back. They were still filming at the Colosseum! Actually we think they were setting up INSIDE the Colosseum. They had big huge lights that they were putting over it & into it & we waited around a bit but didn't see anyone. :-( So after that we caught our bus & took the rest of the tour & went back towards the hotel. Catie & I got some dinner at a restaurant near by & mom went back & straight to bed where we joined her shortly. We were all EXHAUSTED. More to come...


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