The best way to find your way around somewhere is to simply walk forward and see where the path takes you. This is exactly what I did this past week in Rome.
My friend who was visiting from the Temple London program obviously wanted to see the sites of Rome and looked to me to be her tour guide. Feeling as though I know where all the touristy places are, I felt that I could handle the job. Secretly, however, I also wanted to sneak in some sightseeing for myself of places I haven’t yet been.
We started off on a superfast tour of the obvious sights that she wanted to see like the Forum, the Coliseum, and the Spanish Steps. After we checked those off the list, we proceeded to the Villa Borghese Park which is located right by Temple Rome, but an area of ROme I still hadn’t truly explored.
We started off by walking around the scenic gardens and water fountains which winded up a hill to a lake with big fish and ducks. There were paddle boats for rent, so we got one and enjoyed a quick 20 minutes of floating around the lake (which had neat fountains and statues) and taking numerous pictures of ourselves to capture the occasion. After our boat ride we ventured around the park some more and continued taking in the sights and capturing our walk by taking a lot of pictures. My friend and I both agreed that it was a great end to an eventful day and decided that it was probably one of Rome’s greatest spots to unwind and escape the hectic tourist traps.
After our jam packed day of all things Rome, we ended it with a dinner at a restaurant I have been eyeing these past couple months but haven’t actually tried. It is located right near the Residence so I walk past it every day and decided that my friend’s visit was reason enough to try it out. We enjoyed an elegant dinner at a very reasonable price. To be honest, it was my first time at a sit down restaurant here in Rome since I arrived. It was nice to sit down and eat for a change. Usually I get sometime quick at a bar, and in the Italian way, stand at the counter while you eat and then continue on with your day.
I felt really happy to have my friend visit for the couple days that she did, especially because I don’t have any family coming to visit like so many of the other students. After she left, I realized that I have grown and accustomed myself to Rome so much within such a short amount of time. She was having trouble figuring out the money, and I knew it without thinking. She wasn’t sure where she was or how to use the bus or metro, but I was able to explain it to her. Two months ago, this was not the case. I guess I really am doing as the Roman’s do…even more so than I thought.