Hane and I with our heads huddled together, Tara and I at the Spanish steps (our poses in that picture remind me of Manet's Petit Dejeuner sur l'herbe!)
Rome is so expansive (and continuously expanding!) that we spent quite a lot of time with our noses in our map. This final leg of the journey was for our return flights home, so we only spent 2 nights in Rome. We took it easy, leisurely walking the streets, not neglecting gelato breaks of course! We had these incredible pastries called 'sorchetta' topped with cream and chocolate one night, after a night of socialising with my Roman friend Aurora, and our mutual German friend Hane (both of whom I'd worked with in Venice, oh that all seems so long ago now!) Where we'd usually get curry cheese chips, the Romans have delicious patisseries open into the the wee hours, and no anti social behaviour. I could get used to that way of life, my waistline wouldn't find it hard to adjust!
Aurora took us to a small family owned restaurant called A Casa di Alice on our last night. The menu had dozens of different spaghetti dishes, all the pasta being made fresh in the kitchen. She went to secondary school in the area our hostel was in (east Rome), so she was familiar with all the best social spots, luckily for us! It was all very reasonably priced and with plenty of choice for vegetarians, so different from home.
Rome was very touristy, but it has a charm of its own, the locals are well dressed like so many Italians are. There are many, many designer boutiques, which didn't interest us. One afternoon, I removed myself from the mania of Rome and the Piazza di Spagna and found refuge for an hour in the Keats Shelley House, located right beside the Spanish Steps. It was a peaceful haven in the heart of the ever pulsing Rome, Keats himself would appreciate that I think.
We stayed at the Papaya Hostel. We visited some of the main attractions in the city centre - the Spanish Steps, the Keats Shelley House, the Palazzo del Quirinale, the Via dei Condotti. However, we mostly just walked the streets, as we both had visited the city before, and we preferred to catch up with friends than fret about getting into the major attractions.
1: 1am 'Sorchetta mora', from pasticceria Lambiase, Rome
2-3: Home made spaghetti with extra virgin olive oil, garlic and pumpkin: 'Halloween' pasta from A Casa di Alice
4: Hostel selfie, wearing 1960s Dollyrockers velvet liberty print shift dress & murano glass stud earrings
5: Keats bed, in which he died on February 23, 1821 in Rome, at the age of 25
6: Locks of Shelley and Keats hair.
7: Silhouette (1823) of Fanny Brawne (1800-65) by Augustin Édouart at the Keats-Shelley House, Rome
8: Homeward bound over the Alps
All these wonderful photos were taken on my friend Tara's camera, the instagram pictures are my own.