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“A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.” ~ Stephen Sondheim (and Tom Haas)

September 19, 2017

Years ago our family saw a play called “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” and found it to be quite funny.  By  weird coincidence, our travel group members are also quite funny, and one of our tours today included a trip to the Forum.  On today’s three hour tour (cue Gilligan’s Island’s theme music) destinations were the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, Palatine Hill and the Spanish Steps. We definitely hit our 10,000 steps easily.

We met our guide at the Colosseum but not before a random person who had accidentally walked in front while I was taking a photo asked me to pose with him.  Perhaps he was my wish come true from the third coin in the Trevi Fountain, perhaps not.

“I have wandered all my life, and I have also traveled; the difference between the two being this, that we wander for distraction, but we travel for fulfillment.” ~ Hilaire Belloc

 

There is nothing I have ever seen quite like the Colosseum. One could easily spend hours there learning its history and uncovering its secrets.

The climb inside is not for the faint of heart, or the out of shape, and despite the fact that they do not serve wine in the Colosseum, we persevered!

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We then climbed one of the seven hills of Palatine ( although it felt like we climbed all seven).

 

“I found Rome built of bricks; I leave her clothed in marble.” ~ Augustus

Then, a funny thing happened on the way to the Forum…..

In other news, the Forum was unbelievable.  I was constantly bewildered on how it so much of it could still be standing today, in the middle of a living, breathing city.  The guide told us that Rome is like lasagna, there are so many layers to it.

“The Creator made Italy by designs from Michelangelo.” ~ Mark Twain

After our tour we had a delicious lunch with good food, good wine, and most importantly good friends.

Our final tour of the day was self guided of the Spanish Steps using the translations of Gary, Tom and Skip.  They were not and never will be Latin scholars.  When not being stalked by peddlers with roses or selfie sticks, we made our way down the steps into the crowds of tourists.

We ended our afternoon once we found our way home on the roof top bar of our hotel.  Another perfect day for the memories.

“Oh, the streets of Rome are filled with rubble
Ancient footprints are everywhere
You can almost think that you’re seein’ double
On a cold, dark night on the Spanish Stairs

Got to hurry on back to my hotel room
Where I’ve got me a date with Botticelli’s niece
She promised that she’d be right there with me
When I paint my masterpiece

Oh, the hours I’ve spent inside the Coliseum
Dodging lions and wastin’ time
Oh, those mighty kings of the jungle, I could hardly stand to see ’em
Yes, it sure has been a long, hard climb.”

Bob Dylan – When I Paint My Masterpiece Lyrics

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