There are so many things about Rome that seem so crazy when you’re living here. Yesterday, I was trying to find a restaurant open for Sunday lunch (no easy feat), and became hopelessly lost along the way. Then I turned a corner, and spied the Colisseum looming in the distance. Oh. Not lost anymore. Suddenly knew exactly where I was. It never fails to amaze me how all these beautiful ancient monuments that you spend your childhood reading about just appear right in front of you while you’re going about your ordinary business.
So, file this one under “anicent things that blow me away.” After my indulgent lunch at Roscioli last week, I took a lengthy walk. It’s part of my effort to reassure myself that I’m not really going to gain 10 pounds while living here. (If you walk after a meal, it cancels out all the calories you just consumed, obviously.) I’d read in my guide book that Aventino Hill was considered the most beautiful by Romans, so I headed in that direction.
I was unsure if I was actually in the right place, but I stopped hearing cars zoom by and started hearing birds chirping, so I thought maybe I was getting close. I passed several churches with gardens where you could stop and take in sweeping views of the city (like the photo at the top of this post).
Then, I started noticing people crowding around a door. Without even meaning to, I had stumbled upon Villa Malta, which I’d read about in my guidebook and already decided would be too complicated for me to find (side note: I’ve found 85% of the things mentioned in my guidebook this way).
If you look through the keyhole above, you are treated to a view of a beautifully groomed garden with a perfectly framed view of St. Peter’s Basilica in the center. It’s amazing. (Also, I kind of love this lady’s sight-seeing outfit.)
How did they do that? Still can’t get over it.