September 15, 2011

Today we could take it easy in the morning. First up, grab a coffee from our guy around the corner (picture taken by Cynthia…not on this particular day, but I wanted you to see it for reference…and visit if you’re ever in Campo dei Fiore).

Every morning, we each got great coffee from a wee, old man. He was lovely and he remembered our orders.

After a little relaxing and nibbling at food, it was time to head to Vatican City for our day there. It wasn’t a horrible walk, but as usual, it was hot. On the way there, we passed a store called “Mood”. I stopped and took a picture for friends at home…just as I did of “Mood” the fabric store in New York that’s featured on Project Runway. Inside it’s very different.

This is the first time I noticed that if I'm walking while taking a picture with my phone, it acts as though the lens was curving. Weird.

As we continued our walk, we crossed a big, pretty bridge. There were several statues, so of course, I took some pictures.

Big statue! Teeny car!

Guess what? It's another statue.

Across the bridge (still see some statue).

Could it be? Yes! Another statue!

Tricked ya! It's part of the carving on the base of the statue.

We've left the bridge and seem to be headed to a large, white building with a dome...




















So, we’re here. Outside of the Vatican, well, really, St. Peter’s Basilica (the dome is the giveaway). Turns out we walked straight to where we end the tour, so we got to walk some more and work up more sweat on our way to get inside the Vatican (I can’t think that the sweat was overly appreciated by anyone).

Middle of the whole shebang, St. Peter's Basilica. the left of the Basilica.

In between the left side and the dome.

More from the outside.

Where people sit for the public blessing from the Pope.

Right side, left of the dome.

Walking closer to where we thought the line would be. #fail




















Once inside the Vatican museum, we weren’t allowed to use flash on cameras, so I relied on my iPhone to capture the moments. The brief, fast-paced moments since our guide raced us through some of the most amazing art and rooms I’ve ever seen (thinking specifically of the map room – I found a video of it when I searched)…stopping to really focus on things she liked…meaning that I have a lot of pictures of a lot of things, that I may or may not be able to identify. Here goes…

Big, blurry hands.

Wooden carving of the layout of Vatican City.

Slightly different angle of the wooden carving.

Golden orb...weird curved thing cause of movement.

Statue outside in the courtyard.

One of my favorite statues of the whole trip. Totally looks like he's about to bust a move.

The Belvedere Torso (and yes, I looked that up to be sure).

Random ceiling. I could've really hurt myself looking up at ceilings instead of paying attention.

Mosiac tiled floor around a GINORMOUS bathtub...I think it was Nero's?

The ceiling made me want Eggo waffles really bad.

More tiled floor; different room.

More of the floor.

She said it was fake after I took the picture...I kind of figured, I mean, it was Italy, not Egypt.


Bird on a vase.

Another ceiling. Starting to think all ceilings should be beautiful instead of plain.

I mean, why wouldn't you paint the ceiling?

You could put, like, family portraits up there...

Or maybe some angels over some workers...

Blue floors are cool. The guide explained why. I was too busy taking pictures.

Ladies and gentlemen, the spectacular map room! (and a lady inappropriately dressed)

Map room ceiling.

Looks like a map...

Painted sign on a map painting.

Do you see what I mean? The map room's freaking amazing!

Look at that ceiling! I can't believe I didn't get lost (in the map room...irony!) looking up all the time.

Even the side panels in the map room are pretty.

Another shot of the map room ceiling.

It's the boot!

Over the entrance way to the map room (she led us in at the exit and walked through the wrong way).

This was a fun, very old map.

Another ceiling...but I kind of miss the map room.

Over the bookcase that held the book proclaiming Mary the mother of Jesus.

Here it is again.

Painting of something.

Another painting.

I wonder who did the decor...

Pretty tiled floor.

Another room; another ceiling.

Part of the painting on the wall.

This was amazing! The painting base looked like it stuck out from the wall.

Even the hard to reach spots are fabulous!

I was standing next to this and thought it was pretty cool to observe.

Big painting.

Looks like more ceiling.

What's he drawing? Just a spikey.

The guy in red is supposed to be Dante. His attitude is saying, "Imma cut in front of this line, yo!"

Warning sign to not fall after leaving the Sistine Chapel (no pics). I had to be super careful.

St. Gregory on the walk out to the Basilica.

Not the clearest, but these are all the Popes buried at St. Peter's.


































































































































































































I was sad we couldn’t take pictures inside the Sistine Chapel. We also weren’t supposed to talk. Or eat. Or drink. I saw people doing ALL OF THE THINGS! But we were good…a few whispers here and there and one accidental picture from Beverly.

Next was St. Peter’s Basilica. Despite the clear instructions on the website, some people thought that the covering of shoulders and knees was merely a suggestion, much like the driving signs all over Italy. They were wrong. Our guide had to ask for extra scarves, jackets, shirts, anything to get some people covered properly so we could all go inside. It was quite lovely…unfortunately, because we could use flash again, I switched cameras. So everything looks really dark and kind of grainy. For those of you who dissed the OG iPhone’s camera (Original Gangsta…what I call my original iPhone), look again at the museum pictures and tell me they’re not better. I dare ya.

Inside the Basilica.


Inside the Basilica.

Yep...still inside.

Another was on the wall.

I really can't get enough of the ceilings.

Statues inside the Basilica.

I think this was the one that gets the foot rub.

Those little green clappy hands? That's our guide.

More ceiling. You're shocked, I know.

They didn't take us downstairs.

Another statue.

Ceiling again. What is my deal?









































So we finished the tour and were starving. I won’t talk about the walk and how I thought we (well, at least me) would die before we ate again since we weren’t passing food places. We finally did find a sandwich place, but it wasn’t Sarah’s favorite place ever. We plowed on and eventually, Cynthia found another church to go into and Sarah and I sat outside a cafe and had a beverage. As we looked around, we realized the street was called something like “Via della Bologna”…we decided that everything was better on baloney road…beverages, gelato, sitting, all of it. After reviving a bit, we wandered and ended up in Trastevere. We had dinner at an aptly named joint before wandering home for a well deserved rest:

One of each per favore!

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