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

Monday, December 04, 2006

Sat. Nov. 18 Day 2
So day 2 we woke up and got some breakfast-we had a great continental breakfast including yogurt, ham&cheese, cereal, fresh juice, etc. Then we headed to catch our bus to go to the Colosseum. We found out that the tour bus we wanted the first day was running again & the one we had before was crappy so we bought a pass for that new one (the one we wanted). It had a ton more stops as well as another bus that takes you out to the country. So we hopped on the bus & got off at the Colosseum for another try. It was open today and we actually paid for a guided tour which turned out to be great! It was really interesting to see the Colosseum but also really sad. It was actually used for a lot of horrible things. The gladiators used to fight the animals but were generally slaves with no real choice. They would also fight each other, sometimes against someone they had trained with since they were young and it was a battle to the death. Thousands of Christians were also persecuted there, forced to battle againste the lions with no weapons of any sort. If they somehow managed to survive they still would have to hope the emperor would allow them to live. He would give a thumbs down if they were still fated to death. See the photos for more. So during the tour we found out that the Sistine Chapel and the whole Vatican museum was already closed for the day and didn't open on Sundays! We left Monday morning so unfortunately we weren't able to see the Vatican museums though we did stop by the Vatican for a few photos of the outside & such. So we grabbed some lunch & then continued our tour on Palatine Hill and the Roman Forum. On Palatine Hill is the house of Augustus-the first emperor of Rome (though he technically never called himself that). Before Augustus, Caesar ruled and was killed. When he died he left the empire to Augustus (his great nephew). We learned that he did have an illegitmate son who never took the power, not knowing of his relation. Marc Antony wanted to get the power from Augustus & they eventually went to battle & Augustus won. Marc Antony & his wife Cleopatra killed themselves after their defeat. So we saw the house of Augustus which of course now is mostly ruins but we could see how HUGE his house was when the tour guide pointed out the bathroom about a half mile away. It had some interesting things in it. There were gardens outside that the grounds were always warm. They ran the hot water pipes underneath the garden so the heat from the pipes would keep the ground warm. There's a lot more but look at the photos for more. We also went down into the Roman Forum which is the first city of Rome which started its building in about 50 B.C. We found out the while Mussolini was in power he wanted a direct view of the Colosseum from where he was living so he decided to PAVE 60% of the Roman Forum & 90% of the Imperial Forum (also part of the first city). Mussolini, after losing his power, was kille d& dragged throughout the city naked. He deserved it for so many reasons! So we went to catch our tour bus home but it didn't come!
Tangent: I forgot to tell the cute story about how mom & I got magnetic bracelets/necklaces. I had seen them before and thought I would like one so I asked how much. 15 euro. I was truly looking for about 8 euro so I was like nevermind. He kept bargaining with me until he said 8. So I bought i but thought I would like a different color so he handed me that one so I could switch but then said 2 for 10 & just kind of grabbed the 2 euro change I had from the 10 euro bill. Haha 1 for 15 or 2 for 10. Good deal!
So we were waiting for our bus & found out they went on strike again! While complaining we met a Mexican family who were also on our bus & so we kind of made friends. Habib & Marcela & their 4 kids & us went and caught the metro together to go yell at the office to try & get our money back. They had a dinner party so they went to that & we went to the Trevi Fountain which is BEAUTIFUL especially at night. After that we grabbed some dinner & then headed home. Exhausted again!


Post a Comment

<< Home