Tuesday, July 20, 2004
Hi everyone. I had an excellent weekend and now today it's back to The Program. On Saturday morning we went to the Palazzo Altemps, a museum of Roman sculpture that opened only a few years ago in an old Italian palace near the Piazza Navona. It was a great small museum and I enjoyed it. Then we had a visiting scholar talk about the Pantheon at the Pantheon, which is probably my favorite Roman building. Afterwards, we walked around Rome looking at some late 2nd century stuff (we're attempting to do Rome chronologically). So we atopped at the Hadrianeum and the column of Marcus Aurelius, and stuff like that. Saturday night we were supposed to go to the Capitoline Museum at 7 but several people in our group, including Myles, were late, and they wouldn't sell us ticets after 7. So Myles felt really bad and offered to take us all out to gelato. We went to Giolitti's, all 26 of us. It was pretty funny...they didn't know what to do when they saw us all coming in. 12 of us had made dinner reservations at a place near Campo di Fiori, so we went there around 8:30. No menu...they just ask you, 'Red or white?' and feed you a five-course dinner. We all had a great time and the food was very good. When we left, the chef came out and gave us all the 'kiss-kiss' one on each cheek. Friends of ours (Frank and Norma) are in town on their honeymoon and they had called to see if we could get together on Sunday, so I met them at the Colosseum at 1 and spent the day as tour guide. We did tourist Rome - great lunch at Abruzzo, the Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps, Pantheon, Corso, gelato at Giolitti's, Piazza Navona, dinner in the Jewish Ghetto (the best place for typical Roman food), and then Campo di Fiori. I threw in a few churches as well. I think I may have tired them out, but that they really enjoyed their day, especially just being able to follow someone around who knows where they're going. It was great to see them! Yesterday I went with Charlotte to have a girly day. We got pedicures at the Hotel Russie (very posh...) and walked around the Spanish Steps area and had a delightful lunch. After we got home we actually had time for a siesta before our 6 p.m. lecture. As for today, well, nothing excites a bunch of Classicists more than a good museum and today we're going to the mother of all museums, the Vatican Museum. We are only scheduled there until 12, but of course we're all planning on making a day of it. I got my good walking shoes on! Ciao for now!