An expatriot in Rome
Marianne's cousin lives in Rome now. She left the United States many, many years ago to take a job in Rome. She loved it so, that she has made it her permanent home. She enjoyed hearing about a variety of things happening in the states....NYC was her home when she was young. She lives in a quiet neighborhood outside the city's center. We travelled by bus to find her and enjoyed a lovely lunch in her apartment.
There are wonderful courtyards filled with gardens behind the buildings, and convenient little shops close by. We walked around the block and enjoyed some of the ordinary daily life of the residents there.
I have read about VTers who have done as Marianne's cousin, and fallen in love with a city or country to adopt it as their own. It's a curious thing how a place 3,000 miles from where you grew up can sometimes overwhelm you so much as to make you want to stay forever. Is it in the water? Or are there special vibrations?
Crypt of the Capuchin monks
The crypt is located just under Santa Maria della Concezione, on Via Veneto just off Piazza Barberini. In 1631, the remains of many Capuchin friars were exhumed and transferred from the friary near the Trevi Fountain to this crypt, which now contains the remains of 4,000 monks buried between 1500-1870, during which time the Papal States permitted burial in and under churches. The underground crypt is divided into five chapels lit only by dim natural light seeping in through cracks, and small lamps which cast strange shadows.
Each chamber has been decorated with the bones, which are arranged on the ceilings and walls forming intracate patterns or have been sorted in piles against walls. Each of the chambers are different, some even contain the haunting full skeletons of monks clothed in the traditional brown habit. It is quite a strange sight to see human remains displayed in this way, but fascinating nonetheless.
I've read elsewhere that the present monks run the crypt and take donations etc, but none were present when we visited; instead a young woman was seated behind the table in the entrance hall. You are asked to make a donation, and there are postcards for sale, as photography is not permitted.
Definitely a must-see when in Rome!
Rome at night
The streets and landmarks light up at night. Italians tend to eat dinner late, usually at 9 o'clock. That is when the restaurants are filled with people. Just walk the streets of Rome at night, but do not go to areas where there are less people -- there may be danger.
Good Rome Cuisine!!!
The food is really good fresh and home made, the owner is great! He looks like is coming out from a 60's Italian film.
The restaurant is quite normal and not really sophisticated, but is real and the reason to go there is the food!
Is better to reserve a table. The starters are the best thing for me! They give you hot and cold antipasto, from mozzarella di bufala, to meat balls!!! Meat balls are the best!!!!! Don't miss it!
Cooking Holiday Roman Countryside- Authentic
My husband and I attended a one week italian cooking holiday in September, with a company called 'Convivio Rome'. We were truly blown away by the whole experience as it was far more than just cooking with fresh local ingredients. Firstly, we got to stay in a little medieval house with a garden, within the historic walls of Toffia.. We overlooked a valley filled with olive trees and the central church that chimed on the hour, and enjoyed being ' a local' in a very unspoilt and authentic medieval hilltop village. This experience alone was worth it! The cooking holiday programme included 3 cooking lessons, followed by lunch with local wines, afternoon excursions to visit neighbouring villages, monastries, chocolate factory, an olive grove tour (lead by a very enthusiastic couple), a day trip to Rome (to see some areas I have never seen before, around the back streets) and a wine tasting evening. Sally and Guido (an Australian-Italian couple who run Convivio Rome) were friendly and attentive hosts who made sure the pace was relaxed. We never felt rushed and enjoyed our free time as much as joining in with all the activities on offer. We were in a small group of 6 so always felt our individual needs were easily looked after. Oh, and the food, locally sourced and seasonal ingredients and wine were fabulous. My only complaint was we had to leave!