Ciao Italia: Italy post #1

A number of people have asked to see the email updates I sent home from Italy in January. I’m going to post them here so that you can read them at your leisure. Here we go.

#1  We are here and all is well.  We were lucky to have usair points that allowed us to have those seats that turn into beds. That was all very nice with decent food and wine, plenty of room and we did sleep! As we started the descent into Rome, Paul realized that one of his shoes was gone. Quite a mystery until we discovered that the hiking boot had been swept up by the seat as it morphed from bed to chair and was stuck inside! We didn’t want to break the fancy seat so solicited help from the crew. After everyone had deplaned the co-pilot gave it a couple of violent yanks and out it came. Boot and chair survived and it certainly was an interesting start to the trip!

The Fountain of the Four Rivers at Piazza Navona under stormy skies.

The Fountain of the Four Rivers at Piazza Navona under stormy skies.


We cabbed into town in the rain and were deposited at our lovely hotel. It was too early for check in so they they gave us cappuccino and tiny cookies to boost our energy level and sent us out into the weather. The sun came out and we had a great sightseeing walk and an excellent lunch of Roman style artichokes, lasagna and gnocchi with Gorgonzola and spinach sauce. All this to the strains of the restaurant owner’s favorite music which included Louis Armstrong, Dean Martin and Joy to the World by an American choir. 

Piazza Navona is our neighborhood and we saw the Pantheon, several churches and the senate where very well-dressed men were dashing in and out looking important. The guards there were dressed in traditional garb including hats two feet wide. As we were sticking our heads inside to see those guards it began to hail and the rain came back. That said, it is not unbearably cold and it’s wonderful to be here with only a few other tourists even if we have to use our umbrellas! Jet lag finally took over and we napped away the late afternoon so that we could eat at 8:30 p.m., like the Italians.