26 June 2011

Day 22: Recharging the Batteries

After the last few days of much physical exertion on the coast, S and I both needed a battery recharge. I slept for 9 hours last night, which is unusual for me. S, not to be outdone, slept for approximately 13. So, she wins.

I got up this morning and went for a run. We're not too far from the Tiber, so I ran down the river and then looped around Circus Maximus before headed home. Then, I got cleaned up, picked up some breakfast (why yes, that big hunk of dough DOES have an entire apple inside!), and did some photo editing. Once S woke, it became clear that she was not interested in going outside during the daytime (her batteries take longer to recharge than mine), so I left for some exploration on my own. First stop, Piazza Navona:

This was one of the first places in Rome that I connected with, so I like returning there. I tried to find the place where I had an amazing pizza stregata a few years ago, but I think the place may have closed down. Le sigh.

Leaving the piazza (it's hot, and there's no shade), I wandered some narrow streets, enjoying the shade:

And then found myself at the Pantheon:

And the Spanish Steps. I didn't hear much Spanish at the steps - mostly English.

After the Spanish Steps, I wandered across the Tiber, had a campari & soda to recharge, meandered through a street fair, and found myself looking down the street at St. Peter's basilica. Since S had expressed uninterest in it, I thought I'd take the opportunity to check it out again (it's been 10 years since my last visit). The afternoon sun shone steep:

And I found these marble-painted Bose 101 loudspeakers that are part of the reinforcement system.

I made a couple of audio recordings, then zipped on back to home to check on S.

Back at home, S was up, moving around, and had started the laundry. We chilled for a while before heading out for dinner. We wandered towards the Jewish Ghetto and passed a few kosher places (how can you not put sausage AND cheese on a pizza?) before finding a little place called Il Portico. They had an extensive menu, full of pizzas, pastas, secondis, and salads. We sat at a table in the piazza next to another American couple, Aaron & Taiya. They were from Ellicot City in Maryland, and we ended up striking up a conversation over dinner. Sarah had a sausage pizza (delish), and I had Spaghetti Cacio e Pepe, which is pasta with pecorino cheese and black pepper. Both dishes were great! We also split a cheese & pear salad, which was less than thrilling. Also, I had some house wine.

After dinner, S, Aaron, Taiya, and I wandered over to Piazza Navona for gelato and people-watching. The piazza is lovely at night - and MUCH cooler than it was during the day!

Tomorrow, we're planning on rising early, doing some outdoor things, and then spending the afternoon inside the a/c - maybe a museum? It's funny - I don't really think of Rome as a museum kind of town - I think of the whole town as being one large museum...

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