Day 4 Rome – Hanging with the Pope

Slept in a little this morning (let’s not overstate it – 7.10am), had a leisurely breakky and then headed off to spend another day traversing the boot, trying to discover the real Italy, the Italy lived and experienced by Italians *oh shut up wanker Lisa and pour a wine* or just a bloody wander around Rome.  No particular plan in place just wherever the mood took us this morning.  We hit the cultural hot spots of course, including my love, the Disney store (average one tbh) as well as Zara which made me giggle because the whole front of the store was taken up with parked Vespers.

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We actually can’t believe that there are so many people riding Vesper’s here in Italy.  I thought it was like one of those urban myths aka Aussies all say g’day mate, throw shrimps on the barby, wrestle crocs, wear thongs, drink VB (wait what….that’s not a myth ha).  Truly it feels like half the population of Italy ride Vesper’s and that the whole country drive like maniacs (without a word of a lie I’ve used up 8 of my 9 lives crossing roads already and in a few days I will tell you the tale about me being hit by a car) and the parking….boy oh boy….the parking is insane!!!  Everyone drives teeny tiny cars, the likes of which I’ve never seen on planet earth … or outside of cartoonland … and they can park like superhero legends.  We have seen some spectacular efforts with only mere millimetres between cars that make us shake our head and want to pin medals on chests *especially hot young Italian male chests*.  #represent Italia parking legends.  I intend to try and capture some better shots than this but you will get the gist…

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We did a little window shopping for me/real shopping for the man I’m dating which of course I wasn’t really feeling.  I am lead to believe that a lot of women find shopping enjoyable, am I broken? Obviously you don’t need to answer that, clearly I am.

Had a quick bite to eat at some dodgy café where we sat on the street eating whilst simultaneously inhaling everyone’s secondhand cigarette smoke.  Holy shitake mushroom…..it would appear that the majority of Italians still smoke and do so anywhere and everywhere and give zero F**ks what other people think about this (and don’t give a bollocks about putting their ciggies out near you or in fact in the middle of your forehead).  Secondhand smoking will become your new past-time when visiting Roma and  you better smile and bastard well love it or else they will revoke your visa and boot you out of the boot!!!!  All jokes aside cigarette butts are everywhere and I’m astonished at the amount of smokers.  Australia is certainly doing good things in this area and I was minisculely proud for a nano second.  And electric cigarettes are all the rage here too, I don’t think Leo DeCaprio can take all the credit (even he couldn’t make these things look even moderately sexy).  After some investigative journalism on my part it would seem these electric ciggies are filled with a type of liquid nicotine and I am left scratching my head *and left nut* as to why these are better than actual durries (please enlighten me if you know more my learned sexy friends).

Finally…..it was time to bath in holy water, wash away my sins and enter the Pearly Gates of dum dum dum dum…..The Vatican!!!!  For those that don’t know The Vatican is it’s own country…..population of 900 with the highest crime rate per capita in the world.  Apparently this is mainly due to pickpockets who take advantage of the stupidos who stand there gawking “up” and don’t hold onto their valuables.  I’ve tried to pick them from the crowds but imagine they don’t look like the Artful Dodger from Oliver these days –  they are clearly smart enough to wear a disguise aka dorky American tourist style clothing – and blend in.

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We waited outside to meet our guide and after yesterdays debacle of mammoth proportions my stress levels were kinda high ~ a prosecco or 5 may have helped the nerves~ but I abstained.  The good news was we were using the same company as for the Colosseum so I felt like we would be in god like hands.   At this moment the sea parted a la Moses and the angels in the sky started singing heavenly songs and the sun started beaming – as my beloved Nicolai walked towards us.  I may have shed a tear at this point but what happens on tour stays on tour so I’ll never tell #winning 10.  Again we were very blessed to only have 6 people on the tour #winning 11.  There was this young good looking American couple, dressed like they walked straight out of a Horse and Hound magazine – both wearing beautiful boots and blazers and all things stylish and lovely.  When she said she had walked around Rome for 13 hours yesterday in those to die for boots without getting sore feet and without one hair out of place I wanted to punch her in the face…with a knife….or ask her if at the very least I could learn at the beautifully clad feet of the master.  Meanwhile I’m standing there in jeans and sneakers for the “too many days in a row looking like a tourist loser” wondering why I am so style challenged.

Anyway on with the tour.  My new history crush Nicolai did not disappoint and had us hanging on every word from his mouth like a group of screaming girls at a One Direction concert – without the screaming – although several times fan girl me did consider throwing my bra at him (fortunately I realized I didn’t want to get chaffing from my twins continually hitting my knees so I restrained myself in the nick of time).

Here he is – my guide lord dreamboat – standing with some other guy who I can’t quite remember

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I’m going to share lots of photos of ceilings because they were just so stunning and they were my particular fave things throughout the Vatican Museums.  Incredible detail that had to be seen to be believed but hopefully you’ll get a small taste of it from these pics….

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Some outside shots

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Lots of the statues had their penises chiselled off or covered by fig leaves.  Nic did explain why but I was too busy wandering around staring at the missing penises and giggling by then to listen

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Nic had lots of funny little stories to make it interesting and bring this overwhelming place down to my level of understanding aka stoopid barely can call myself a Catholic level.  Unfortunately you can’t take any photos inside the Sistine Chapel, which I had originally thought was for some holy moly religious reason but no it was for something far more sacred…..the almighty dollar (ahhhh gotta love us Catholics and our love of the green stuff).  It would appear that the Catholic church couldn’t afford to have the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel cleaned to show off Michaelangelo’s amazing work (yeah right they couldn’t afford it, maybe the Pope at the time was partaking in a little too much of the good vino #respect) so a Japanese company sponsored the cleaning and when they finished the church shrugged and said shucks fellas….we can’t afford to pay you.  So the Japanese company said no worries bro, we will just have the copyright for photos of the ceiling for 16 years and that my friends is why you can’t take photos in the Sistine Chapel (for another 6 years at least).  #truestory.  Soooo you will just have to take my word for it when I say it was spectacular in there.  I stood looking at the ceiling in a near-orgasmic trance, taking it all in.

He also told us that no one is allowed to die inside the Vatican except for the Pope.  He thought this was a bit of an old wives tale until he saw a lady actually die inside one of the Vatican museums one day – like dead as a doornail (why are doornails dead???? Please explain).  So anyway the next day he reads in the paper that a lady died “on the way into the Vatican”.  So what did they do, drag the old duck outside and then call the ambulance????  Just another example of how awesome we Catholics can be in your hour of need hehe.

St. Peter’s Cathedral was pretty bloody awesome as well.  Incredibly large and ornate and something to behold.  A really impressive church indeed and well they have dead bodies lying around in there…like no shiz…real dead bodies.  The one in the picture below was actually dug up from a grave something like 4 years after it was buried (wish I was joking).  I think though that the face is now made of wax or some other voodoo magic so as not to freak the small children out.  There was another body in there too and lord knows how many they had out the back.  I mean what the hell Roman Catholics….why are you displaying for realz dead bodies ya freaks????

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Crowds were pretty insane big but the worst part is the sheer volume of school groups of teenagers.   They are everywhere like little annoying ants.   They were particularly annoying in the Vatican because they just don’t adjust their awesomeness down to a dull roar and respect the Lord as they should.  Lucky I’ve finished having my babies because those groups of teenagers were so gross/annoying/obnoxious that mine and the nearest 40 women’s ovaries actually sterilised themselves.

Selfie sticks were not allowed in there but of course everyone had one which was hard to take for a sweet little rule follower like myself.  I kid you not I even saw a lady in there with a tiny dog on a lead….inside the Vatican.  It took all my self control (and Craig holding his hand over my mouth) not to say “listen Sugar Tits – I’m pretty sure you aren’t supposed to bring your twatting dog in here”.  How she got it through security and the metal detector only the good Lord and baby Jesus knows but something tells me she may have done a little Eve action on the Adam security guard on the way in *just sayin*.

It was just the most tremendously interesting tour and I’m so glad we had an engaging and wise like Dumbledore guide to show us around otherwise the whole thing would’ve been lost on us and so much less incredible.  It was a fantastic 3 ½ hours and even husband – who as I’ve mentioned is running a bit of a hate campaign on the church right now because of all the horrendeous allegations – loved the tour.  Please note:- he did not make one inappropriate joke once we passed through the gates nor did he disrobe at an inappropriate time so the good news is no arrest occurred, the bad news is there is no Benny Hill like footage for us all to laugh at.  Sigh…..next time perhaps.

We strolled home looking at a few more old things, crossed a beautiful bridge I know nothing about, and got ready to go out for dinner.  We went to the most incredible little quirky place for dinner.  I had read lots of reviews so knew we would like it but husband’s face as we rocked up was priceless.  I will admit (but never to him) that I was inclined to agree that it did look a little dodgy at first but once we put on our big girl panties and went in it was actually super duper cool.  It was teeny tiny in there and could probably only hold about 10 people.  Not that this worries the Italian’s – they happily stand in the streets drinking their wine and eating.  Clearly Aussies are too lazy and high class for this…..we like a seat and when I say seat, in this establishment it was actually a wine crate hahahaha.  But….best meal of the trip so far and we scoffed it down and can’t wait to eat there again one day.

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After dinner it was home to pack and get an early night – we are off to Florence in the morning or as us Italians like to call it….Firenze!!!!!  Yes I am Italian now and yes I do believe I will be coming home speaking the language fluently and with a thick accent.  Stay tuned for that peeps!!!!

Public Service announcement – my skinny jeans are becoming so tight – from 4 days of eating my body weight in pizza, pasta, meat and cheese – I may give birth to my internal organs at any moment!!!!

That is all……love Lisa

Highs – Vatican incredibleness, Nicolai legendness, pizza 4 day in a row, dinner of champions

Lows – shopping hahahaha, leaving Roma tomorrow

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