Italian Espresso: Day 1 Rome
An expensive cab ride, irritated desk agents, a wrong terminal, broken escalators, and a never ending security line later I arrived into Rome. Not as jet lagged as I thought and once again immensely thankful that I flew with carry on luggage only. Transfer to the hotel, scare my new room mate when she finds me already in our room. I’m in Italy for a 9 day trip through Contiki Holidays called the Italian Espresso. We’ll be visiting Rome, Florence, and Venice with some day trip destinations in between. I knew it was going to be a bit of a whirl wind when I signed up, but since this was my third trip to Italy, I figured I was good to go.
This was not my first Contiki, but it was my first Contiki alone and I was grateful for my room mate, no matter how strange our first meeting, as we joined the rest of the in the hotel’s bar for our kick start meeting. We all seemed to have that first day of school feeling, a little unsure but all trying to make friends. Luckily, like the first day of school, you would need to work at it to not make friends quickly. By the time we were off to a pizza making demonstration and dinner I had already found a group of people and the trip was off to a great start.
Pizza, wine, a creepy opera singer, and discussions that ranged from Metal bands to Star Wars made our first dinner a success. We walked off the wine and pizza with a tour of the central part of Rome, starting in the forum and ending in Piazza Navona. The scaffolding had just come off the newly restored Trevi Fountain, and we got to see it in all its nightly splendor.
It felt good to be back in Rome, walking those winding streets where each corner has a story and every building has more history than one can easily comprehend. Rome at night has a completely different feel to it, and I was quickly falling in love all over again.
Our night ended late–an omen for nights to come–starting at a wild expat bar and ending in a club that I could never find again if my life counted on it. We started getting to know each other. Reputations were established, and nick names started to be handed out.
I would be part of the last group back to the hotel that night, exhausted but excited for the days to come.