This week I am washing windows and it makes me think back to the days when spring window washing was a major deal. I am sure some of you remember the ordeal of taking off the heavy storm windows for spring cleaning, especially when you had to climb the ladder to remove and wash the ones upstairs. Often times it was not easy to get them off after a long cold winter, or get them back on. Well thankfully window design has improved dramatically over the years. Even though there is still some effort involved, washing windows these days is much easier.
Now why am I talking about window washing when I should be talking about Rome? Because I was thinking, that thank goodness for many improvements in our lives but at the same time it is why I find it even more amazing that so much of the ancient architecture of Rome is still intact today.
Wandering around Rome is a pretty good description of what we did. We did not have a specific plan or route in mind, especially the first day or two, we just wanted to get an idea of what it was like. We had lunch in a small square at a cafe just in front of this beautiful cathedral for our view.
Sitting in the plaza we had a chance to take in the small architectural details, like an oval frame on the corner above. My favourite scenes included the sidewalk cafes, tablecloths, either checked or white, faded paint and the atmosphere along the cobbled streets.
And I loved the small shops like this one selling local produce with a little place to dine in the back.
There was a larger food market and this booth selling every type of pasta you can imagine and then some.
Our wandering led us the the Pantheon. The Pantheon is one of the best preserved ancient buildings in Rome and is a temple dedicated to the worship of every god. The Pantheon was built over previous ruins by the Emperor Hadrian and dedicated around the year 126 AD.
“Hadrian’s soldiers” are still there waiting to take a picture with you for a small price:) But the picture does show you the massive size of the columns in front. I know many of you reading this have been to Rome and I will not go into technical details but hopefully this will bring back good memories of your own visits.
The Pantheon was converted to a Christian church in 609 by Pope Boniface IV and consecrated to Santa Maria of the Martyrs. Later it was turned into a memorial chapel for the Kings of Italy in 1870 where you can find the tombs of Vittorio Emanuele II, Umberto I as well as the tomb of the Renaissance Artist Raphael.
The dome which is an architectural wonder and has been copied many times over with the opening for natural light to shine through the oculus.
Another outside view which you can see the portico in the front with the rotunda area behind.
The Piazza della Rotunda directly in front of the Pantheon and the fountain in the center.
Close up details of the fountain. (hey this one was working!)
What is Italy without a Pizzeria? This one at Piazza Navona.
A quiet time for the musicians. Next post more ancient sites of Rome.