Well, today I checked off another bucket list item: seeing the Colosseum in Rome. Off the top of my head I can't remember what number it was, but after what I experienced today it should have been #1.
We got into Rome yesterday around noon and went straight to the Vatican. Both of us being Catholics it was awe-inspiring to be able to visit St. Peter's Square on Palm Sunday. We spent quite a few hours roaming the area, seeing the beautiful architecture, and eating our first real Italian meal. Because we were an ocean away from home and only 25 miles from the Mediterranean Sea it was a no brainer to grab an Uber (fun fact: in Rome they only have UberBlack so you ride in style) and head to the shore to watch the sunset. We drank a bottle of wine, ate little tomato pie appetizer things, and watched the sunset. When we got back into the city we were starving and in the most cliche of travel statements we 'had the best Italian food hands down at a restaurant we just stumbled upon.' Rosie had this random whole chicken dish that was crispy and grilled to perfection with some pilaf side dish that I can only dream of. I had a lemon-cream-parmesan pasta dish that I will likely dream of the rest of my life (or until I go back and find it).
We woke up today with a full day planned. The idea was to head to the Colosseum and then move outward from there to see other things we had wanted to.
I simply cannot put into words what I felt the moment we turned a random street corner and it was right in front of me. Grandiose, beautiful, daunting, and looming in the most beautiful of ways.
I've always wanted to go to Rome. It's been on my list probably my whole life. Originally because it's just one of the big ones that everyone talks about. As I got older it was more for the history I had learned about the Roman Empire and Ancient Civilization that paved the way for government and politics today. Yes that's so dorky and nerdy even for me, but it's where my passion lies and I've never felt my passion unfold more than when it was standing right in front of my very eyes.
It was just so beautiful, so man-made, and such a representation of an entire different time on this earth. It's hard to describe... it was just so perfect. It was a dream come true.
And the best part was, as I said on my entry during my flight to London, was that it was all mine. For the first time in a long time I did something for me. I had the vacation time, I had the money, and I had the extreme feeling of wanderlust that just made me want... almost need... to get away. That feeling, that pride, is a feeling I want to have the rest of my life.
Tomorrow's another day where I can throw my wishes into the Trevi Fountain and eat gelato next to a vespa so I've gotta stop writing. But honestly I'm going to bed after one of the best and most proud days of my life.