Saturday, October 08, 2005

Me and Rome aren´t on speaking terms

So far, any minute I have spent in Rome has been painful. I left Cortona early in the morning and Amie and Issa dropped me off at the station. By my guess, I would have nearly three hours in Rome to wander just a little, maybe catch one sight and then head out. It was not to be.

It took 45 minutes of waiting to get my bags checked. I still have no clue where the lockers are located. I guess it´s the best theft deterrent when the people with the bags can´t find it. Then I wanted to buy some stamps and mail four postcards. The tourist info desk said to buy them from a Tobacconist. The Tobaconnist I find says no and points me across the street to the Post Office.

Guess what? There´s no machine. The only way to buy stamps is to wait in line. For a week, I´ve been getting used to the "Italian Line" which isn´t so much a line as it is a mob with people constantly jocking to get up front. And all I want are four stamps -- quarto stampe. Instead, the Italian Post Office (at least this Roman one) has you take a number where you will be served by ONE window. This one window also seems to be where government forms, paychecks or anything involving a small stack of papers on the part of the patron and a whole bunch of typing on the part of the clerk.

So I have my number, 78 and I watch as we s-l-o-w-l-y count up. Occasionally, the numbers zip by and I realize that if I am not up and out of my seat within 10 seconds of my number coming up, I lose my spot. I watched the counter like a hawk.

Needless to say, all I have seen of Rome is the main train station, gypsies and police telling me I´m not allowed to sit on the ground and eat lunch. Well, I did get a chance to see the temple of Minerva from the train as I left the station. Maybe another time when I´m in the mood for the bustle of that big city, but until then, Roma, don´t bother calling.

3 comments:

  1. Dear Scott,

    What an interesting trip..I really enjoying reading about your adventures - although I'm not so sure I'd ask you to recommend a tour guide book. As Dr. Seuss say's "Ah the places I've been".

    Safe Travels.

    Regards,
    Suzanne

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  2. Hey Scotty, we made it it home safe and sound. if you ever go back to Italy avoid Pisa like the plague. The only clean part of teh city id around the tower and the duomo. The rest is filled with Italian gutter punks and gypsy kids trying to sticktheir hands down your trousers ( Amie actually got holdof one child withhis hand in her pocket). Oh yeah I fell UP the stairs in the house and bruised the hell out of my foot (it was three different shades of purple)
    Issa

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