Tuesday, February 19, 2013

un día en roma

I used to be jealous of Italian-Americans. It just wasn't fair; their heritage was "cool" at a time when mine wasn't. Then I grew up. I took a trip to Florence. I realized I couldn't help but love Italian culture, especially with their love of celebrations and socializing with family and friends, most often around the table. Not to mention that that table included olive oil, bread, wine, pizza, pasta, etc. ;) Spending this past weekend in Rome, the Eternal City and one which I've "always" known about, further solidified my appreciation.
Marcus and I stayed in a cozy apartment in Trastevere, one of many timeless neighborhood characterized by narrow streets and medieval buildings. We arrived late on Friday night and left late Sunday afternoon. As such, Saturday was our only full day in Rome. His must-see: the Colosseum. My must-do: Roman cuisine. We quite successfully satisfied both of our wish lists and lots more (~9 miles in 12 hours, in fact), including stumbling upon the Roman Pantheon and wandering into Villa Borghese
{Roman breakfast: a bakery cornetti (a denser croissant-like Italian pastry) and bar cappuccino}
{Roman lunch: vino della casa, ciabatta bread, prosciutto & mozzarella di bufala appetizer, pesce del giorno (fish of the day: sea bass) over arugula with potato entrée, espresso}
{one part gelato alla cannella, one part gelato alla cioccolato in a sugar cone}
{Roman dinner: antipasto, hot and cold, fresh ricotta, focaccia bread, vino della casa...} 
{...frutti di mare orzo and fennel salad for me, bistecca and housemade chips for him...}
{... the best tiramisu I've ever had in my entire life, shared}
As you can see, the weather was absolutely beautiful for us. It allowed us to cover lots of ground and make the most of our Italian surroundings. Being in Rome was also quite literally a breath of fresh air. For as much as I adore French culture, it isn't nearly as laid back, warm, or expressive as that of the Italians. And I didn't simply observe this either. My level of Spanish comprehension must've actually improved because, much to my surprise, I found I could generally understand Italian. Now that's what I call a bon week-end!


  1. Looks like a beautiful time in Rome! I have to find cinnamon gelato somewhere, that sounds like the best flavor ever.

    As someone who grew up Italian American, let me just say that I've often found Italian American culture almost oppressive. It's such a small slice of what it means to be Italian (I would argue it says more about America)! It's interesting to read your comparisons between Italian and French culture. I definitely agree that Italians are warm and laid back, but I'm surprised to hear you call them more passionate than the French. I'll have to look out for this! :)

    1. It WAS the best flavor ever. The cone I chose called for 2 flavors so I had to choose quickly under pressure and thankfully got incredibly lucky ;).

      Thank you for sharing your perspective. I've never thought about it that way, but it sounds like you're onto something. As for Italians vs French, I think Italians are simply more expressive with their passion than the French.

  2. You saw so much in such a short time, I'm impressed! :)

    1. We did, we did. And I still have sore legs to prove it ;) thanks!


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