Throughout my week in Rome, I had made several attempts to find the Trevi fountain. For some reason, every time I tried to get there, I found myself in an entirely different part of the city.
Now, I will be the first to whole heartedly admit that my map reading skills are terrible. I really mean TERRIBLE.
What I though strange was that I met a lot of people from different countries who had never even heard of the Trevi fountain. This completely bamboozled me because Rome and the Trevi fountain seem to be quite synonymous and (particularly in the UK) it is immediately associated with he City. Is it just a predominately English fascination?
Anyway, I digress.
I couldn’t find the fountain and on more than one occasion ended up zig zagging my way across Rome in the wrong direction.
Well, it was my last full day in Rome, I was leaving early in the morning and I was not going to leave until I had seen it.
I had pancakes for breakfast and sat in the sun sipping on a latte.
F was leaving that day and had checked out, but still had time to kill before his flight. We hung out for a while and had another coffee and chatted. Later, we went for lunch at the cafe round the corner, and then said our goodbyes.
I love the people that you meet when travelling, the connections and friendships you build, and saying goodbye to someone that you click with so well (even if you’ve only known them a day or two) always sucks.
On the bright side, I’m so glad that it’s so easy to stay in touch with people these days via social media.
After F left, I sat in the sun with my map sprawled over the table, waiting for my pasta to go down and told myself to seriously concentrate.
I studied the map for ages and then marched off down the road with dogged determination.
Well, only a wrong turn or two later, after walking down cobbled streets lined with terracotta buildings and veils of ivy, passing by cherry red moped parked up on the pavement, I was not far away.
I ended up in a small empty piazza where I sat on the stone steps of a church after drinking from one of Rome’s many Nasoni (public drinking fountains) and relaxed in the sun for a few minutes before carrying on down the narrow streets.
I came across a street I actually recognised and realised that probably on several occasions, I had been much closer than I realised and unwittingly bypassed it and gone in a different direction!
I turned a corner and could hear rushing water, I actually got a little excited and when I turned another corner, the fountain was in front of me.
I have never realised the true scale of it, it is embedded in the back of a building and is enormous!
I was also however, absolutely packed.
I was sorely regretting not taking the American up on their offer to go at 2am one drunken night.
I am not a particularly patient person so I (ever so gracefully of course) slipped under a railing and made my way to the front.
A man sat on the edge of the fountain trying to take an awkward selfie, and out of the goodness of my heart (and not at all because I wanted him to get out the bloody way) I offered to take a photo for him.
He said thanks and got up to move out of the way, and I am quite sure out of the corner of my eye, that he was now taking pictures of me. When I spun round to look at him with suspiciously narrowed eyes, he walked away.
I sat on the edge of the fountain to take in the rippling aquamarine water and the intricate details of the white marble sculptures.
I did the typical thing to do and threw a coin in, and made a wish.
The same wish I made on the Stebuklas tile in Lithuania.
The same wish I make every time.
I got a young, timid looking lady to take my photo for me because I sized her up and figured I could easily take her if she tried to steal my phone.
I hope she doesn’t give up her day job for photography because this is not a photo of myself that I like, ut the only one I have of me at the Trevi fountain so oh well, what can you do?
The guy I had taken the photo for came backhand asked me to take a photo of him and his friends, which I obliged to.
Then they asked if they could have a photo with me! Which I was pretty surprised and utterly confused by. When I asked why he said
“Oh, do you mind?”
I didn’t exactly mind but I was generally confused, perhaps they had mistaken me for someone else?
I posed for a photo with them, not understanding much of what they were saying and then made my exit and waved goodbye.
I wandered around the streets of Rome, soaking in the sun, the atmosphere, and the beautiful old buildings one last time (for now) before heading back.
I went for dinner by myself at The Bramble Bar to have my favourite dish – Trofi con broccoli, pomodori sect e ricotta salt (trofie pasta with broccoli, sun-dried tomatoes and salted ricotta.
The after was very attentive and clearly felt sorry for me, but I got to do some of my favourite things which were
A) Stuffing my face with good food and
B) People watching
The Japanese couple particularly made me laugh as they spent their whole meal in silence, on their phones and only looked up to take the odd selfie or photo of each other posing with a forkfuls of pasta.
I told myself I’d have an early night, just “one drink”. I bumped into F’s dorm mate that we had gone to dinner with in the bar. We ended up drinking and dancing until 3am.
I had less than 2 hours sleep, I had to jog to the station, the ticket machine wouldn’t work, and I missed the train I had wanted to get. Luckily there was one more train that would get me to the airport in just enough time.
I found a machine that worked and jumped on the train.
When I got the airport I ran the whole way to security then after that, ran to the gate and got to the gate area for my flight 20 minutes before boarding.
I fell asleep on the plane instantly, and may or may not have snored as the few times I briefly woke up, the old lady next to me was giving me a funny stare.
Upon landing in England, I got the train to my mother’s house, close to the airport, and slept for hours before heading home in the evening for work the next day.