Thursday, June 15th (Night Addendum)

Night Walk in Rome

Because last night was our official last night (that we would have time to do something) in Rome Shannon took us on a night walking tour of some of the most historical parts of the city.  We started with what would be my second to last bus ride, which I am terribly upset by.  It was far better than our afternoon ride-not nearly as many clowns in this ride.  It dropped us near the Pantheon where we started at Giolitti.  It seemed a good way to end there since that's where we began almost 3 weeks ago.  It seems hard to believe it has been that long.  My last Giolitti gelato was dark chocolate, orange and coconut with creme on top (of course).  It was delicious!  We then walked to the Pantheon where we took in the sights and ate our gelato.  I got one last chance to stand in the portico of the Pantheon amidst the enormous columns.  It is amazing to me that no matter how much is going on in the piazza out front there still seems to be a stillness and sacredness in that space.  The enveloping feeling of time starts to overtake you.

It was hard to move on from that space, but we eventually had too.  We wondered through the winding alleyways and made our way to the illuminated Monument of Victor Emmanuel II.  As we passed the monument we turned towards Trajan's Column, Trajan's Market and the Roman Forum.  Not only were the remains lit up, which was incredibly beautiful (Please see the pictures under the AP Studio Art tab), but we noticed that they were projecting pictures and video on many of the ruins depicting the history of Rome.  It reminded me a lot of Lumenocity in Cincinnati, just certainly more on a grander scale.  We were able to sit for awhile and watch the earthquake of Rome and the fires that burned the city.  It was really remarkable how it brought the history to life once again in that space.  

We continued our walk a little further onto the Colosseum which looks even more impressive at night.  I cannot think of a better way to end my time in Rome.  The weather was comfortable (it was also 10:00 at night) and the crowds were far less than during the day.  I believe that dusk and evening are some of the best times to visit most areas of the city (as long as you don't want to go into any them).  I feel like this has been an opportunity of a lifetime and I have done my very best to fully embrace it.  I intend to keep this experience close to me so that I can let it spread to all the areas of my life.