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Kenderina's short trip report of a short visit to Rome

Kenderina's short trip report of a short visit to Rome

Old Jan 6th, 2007, 04:20 PM
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Kenderina's short trip report of a short visit to Rome

I'm back..oh well, I came back on Thursday night but I needed some time to rest. Rome can be very hard when you have a walking and balance disability and a very short time !!
Some of you sure remember my last minute post about the hotel charging my account, well, they told me they were only making themselves sure that my credit card worked and they make me pay at the hotel. I hope they are telling me the truth and I won't be double billed. It has never happened to me before.
Our first day (Tuesday) did not begin very well, our Ryanair flight to Ciampino was scheduled at 9 PM but we were delayed till 11:30 PM. I had phoned the hotel (La Fenice) to tell them we will be there at 12 PM (they never answered to my emails) but I didn't think on phoning them again to tell them the news, I didn't think 2 hours later in the night will make any difference.
When we arrived at Ciampino there were no taxis , it was 1: 30 AM, so we got the Terravision bus to Termini. As you can imagine, there were no taxis in Termini and some illegal approached us offering to give us the ride to our hotel for 35 euros. I said no and the man began to shout the italian way ,moving their arms like if it was a great offence to him..oh, well, I'm spanish..I know how to do the same and shouted he wanted to scam us, hhahaha.
Emilio got a bit frightened to be there in the night without a taxi or a bus on sight and wondering if we should have got the offer...but it was not the money, I just felt uncomfortable with such a man.
We crossed the street to the Royal Santina hotel and with my cellphone called a taxi.

When we arrived to our hotel, the manager was on the door waiting for us. I thought it was kind from him..but he was there to tell us he had given our room and sent us to another hotel from their group (gruppo Trevi) called Nuovo Hotel Quattro Fontane.
He stared at me with quite a pity look. I soon understood...the new hotel was in the middle of a high slope street.

The hotel was nice, the room a bit small for your American standards but it worked well for us. I prefer the twin beds not to be so close together but it's ok for two nights and the bathroom was brand new.
Good breakfast also, not too much to choose from but except for the orange juice (bad, really bad) everything was good quality and fresh.
The hotel is two short blocks from Piazza Barberini(downhill !!!).

I couldn't sleep that night, I suppose I was too excited, my second time in Rome ! By the way, the hotel's heating doesn't work from 11 PM to 6 AM. Rome it's not too cold but I would have loved to be a little warmer while sleeping.
In the morning, after breakfast we boarded at the Via Veneto stop the 110 bus. I recommend it, it's cheaper than other similar buses and there's a bus at the stop every 10 minutes.
I'm not going to bore you with all the sights, lots of nice reports about that here at fodors, just some highlights or drawbacks.
Emilio belongs to a cats lovers association in Valencia so his highlight of the trip was the Largo Argentina and the cats sanctuary. He enjoyed a lot seeing those cats well cared of and fatty
My drawback was the Christmas Market at Piazza Navona. It was not a Market but a Fair !!! Just a few stalls of Christmas things and foods, all the rest were tombolas !! (I don't know if you call it like that in English). I felt sooo sad.

We didn't have bad meals but as you say in english, nothing to write home about it. Everything was pretty crowded (very long lines at st. Peter's..from the entrance around all the columns till out of the Piazza.)
After all day of walking and going up and down the buses I was very tired so we asked the concierge of the hotel to tell us some cheap place very near to have dinner. I think he doesn't know what "very near" is or it really doesn't give a damn about me but he sends us to a place of a friend of him 800 metres uphill !! (I've looked for it on mappy.com here at home). I didn't expect to have to climb the Quirinale hill that night, really. But when I was in the middle I was so tired and angry that I have to arrive...something like a race against myself. The meal was pretty good, but I never told the owner who sent me there. Some customers were also from the hotel. That made me feel much better The people of the restaurant were very nice and called a taxi for us.
The second day was shorter because we had to be at the airport at 5 PM. We took a taxi to the Spanish Steps (at 11 AM they are empty !!), walked down via Condotti with a pit stop for a cappuccino at Caffe Grecco (expensive, 6 euros each, but I think it worth it for the beautiful setting)
then walked down via del Corso looking at the shops windows, lunch at via del vantaggio (nice place also) and arriving to Piazza del Popolo where we took another taxi back to the hotel.

Both of us were so tired (Emilio's back hurted) that we looked at each other and didn't need to say a word...just asked the concierge to book a taxi for us. It was a Mercedes car for 52 euros. I was about to ask if they do any discount for a mini rover
And that's all folks. Romans still drive fast and dangerously as always, zebra crossings are merely to make the streets look better and gelati and capuccini are still a treat...there are things that never change
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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 10:49 AM
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I don't like to send up my own report, but it went down too quickly
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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 10:57 AM
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Thank you kenderina for sharing your trip with us. I love Rome but it can be quite exhausting...lots of gelati stops help!!
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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 12:39 PM
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Beautiful report!!
"zebra crossings are merely to make the streets look better" - very true
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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 01:22 PM
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i have never been so terrified of crossing a street as in rome..
a friend and i stood patiently at the edge of the crosswalk trying to get eye contact with EVERY driver approaching.. to no avail..
then someone told us just to "start crossing the street" and everyone would stop...!!

holy cow!.

reluctant to believe them , we prevailed with our patience until finally we said.. "vamos!".

and it did work, as we literally SCREAMED walk/running across the street as we really were not too sure that it would work ALL the way across the WIDE avenue!

but i am here to tell it, so .. you know the rest.

great report. good to hear from you.
sounds like you made the best of the unfortunate incidents you were faced with!

happy new year.

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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 01:23 PM
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The rule of thumb for crossing a street in Rome is simple: find a nun or priest and cross with them.

They're everywhere, so it's usually not difficult.
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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 01:29 PM
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StCirq...I do the same thing...only any local resident will do. I walk two steps behinds them so they are the closest to traffic. Perferrably they have a small child or baby with them.
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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 02:42 PM
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The thing that makes me blazing mad is when a hotel gives my room away to someone else....It has happened to me in Wales....I would have been utterly devastated if it had happened to me in Rome....I am planning to go to Rome in September....I enjoyed reading about your trip,Thanks,Ed.
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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 03:15 PM
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Hello kenderina, I am sorry you had some problems with your trip to Rome, I was hoping it would be perfect for you.

Yes, Rome can get very exhausting even for those without walking/balance problems.

And the traffic, trying to cross streets, one should be sure to say a prayer, cross themselves and then yes, find a priest or nun who is also going to cross the street, lol. Somehow it all works out though doesn't it.

I hope you don't find out that the hotel double billed you for the hotel room.

I wanted to wish you a beautiful 2007 kenderina. May you and your family have a healthy year full of many joys.
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Old Jan 7th, 2007, 05:24 PM
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Thanks everybody and happy new year

When things don't go as expected I always think "hey, you are in Rome (in this case)" and try to do lemonade
It's easy to do it in wonderful places like Rome while sipping a cappuccino

Thanks for the nuns/priest tip !! I didn't think about it..I have to tell I didn't see many this time, quite strange. Most of the people I found were English, American (they looked like groups from parishes) and..Spaniards.
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