Solo una passeggiata

Oh, St. Peter. 

Welcome to my Rome home—where my neighbor is jolly ole Papa Francesco, the gelaterias are plentiful and my wine glass never seems to be empty...but my wallet always seems to be.

I spent this past weekend in Florence—where the slim sidewalks & single Duomo brought a small town feel. Florence is a city of its own, but it doesn't seem to be quite be like my Rome...

Take one step out on Via Germanico and your nose sidetracks you into the underground, 24 hour bakery that rolls out freshly made cornetti, cannoli, sfogliatelle, etc. around the clock. They are pressing, twisting, & brewing the tiniest little cup of jazzed up goodness you will ever taste.

Take one step out and your hit with the wall of smoke from the business men and women jabbering away rapidly in Italian about their apputamenti for the afternoon and what time to meet for apritivo. 

But fear not that stench won't haunt you for the day, because on your next step you're engulfed by the savory scent of brick oven baked pizza bianca e rosso. The sharp taste of the Parmesan regianno and fresh tomato already enter your nose and dance on your tastebuds taunting you for a treat. The warm was inside from the fresh baked bread hugs your stomach and makes you melt a little inside. 

C'è Roma. 

The smells, the sights, the sensory is so alive. 

Mornings aren't for rest—they are for exploring the endless of miles in Rome. 

Breaks between classes does not necessarily mean "studying" means "the definition of being abroad" i.e exploring. 

That's the time to hop over the historical sites, or stride thru the more than 900 churches, or simply sit out side and people watch in the picturesque neighborhood of Trastevere. 

Monday, maybe the Trevi Fountain. Sans the tourist you have come to dodge and try to avoid—since after all you're considered a local now—you have to toss in those extra 2 centesimi coins that just seem useless into the famous fountain that will claim your return back to the eternal city. 

Tuesday, how about take it back to the days of Augustine and walk along the Via Appia—where Roman soldiers and your Christian ancestors once stepped on. Glide right past the gladiators (and lines—since you know the quickest way) right into the Colosseo. 

Wednesday, hang out at the Spanish steps—dance to the local street musicians, get your feet wet in the fountain and definitely hit up the shops circling the steps—it's 5th avenue gone wild & crazier. 

Thursday, lace up your sneaks and run along the Tiber river. Don't forget to sneak a 20 euro in your pocket to pick up fresh groceries on your way home. You can have your selection of fresh produce, meats, nuts & grains in Campo di Fuori or the local market just behind your apartment—grocery shopping will never be the same.

By the time the three day weekends roll around you wish your plans were to just stay and enjoy your beautiful, eternal city. But, the world awaits, the world is your home & Rome happens to be where your heart is.