Disorder, noise, chaotic traffic, daze, huge monuments... The tourist who arrives in Rome for the first time usually feels a sense of being lost. Formed at the center of a mountainous group of volcanic origin, the city seems to have gathered in itself the fire and the burning lava of its volcanoes. – from “Roma in quattro giorni” (1975)
Rome, Day 1: Heart, be a lake
(Part 1 of 4)
It was past dinner on a Thursday when we entered the Eternal City. That explains perhaps why it was not quite the Rome as some would have warned us to stumble into. Not much noise, nor heavy traffic, not the expected chaotic welcome of a bustling city, not even a certain sense of being lost. It was as if we were really supposed to be in this place at exactly the right time.
No longer a stranger to this part of the world, I did not come to Rome in search of some sort of fire of city life that any capital could offer. This was not to take away the fact that it was once “Caput Mundi” and still is, in one way or the other, very much alive and full of marvel and surprises through the years, or centuries. It is ever evolving, eternal, to mention the obvious. I came to Rome to be with new friends, looking forward to seeing the glow in their eyes and their jaws dropping when they experience one monument after the other for the first time.