Pictures from Rome

Nadia and I relaxed in the spacious and well-appointed V.I.P. lounge at the Philadelphia Airport during our layover there. They said they normally wouldn't let a couple of scroungy backpackers in, but, since it was 9/11...

They probably regretted it when we started taking flash photographs of the place.

I'd always seen the doors to these places in airports but I'd never been in one before. They had free coffee, and the little machine on the far left was a tea-making machine. You just picked out whatever little packet of herbal tea you wanted and inserted it into the machine, and Voila! Freshly brewed tea. Kewl.

We packed light, since we were planning on walking a good part of the way on our trip. Here Nadia picks out which cocktail dresses she'll take.

Nadia had to take some nice clothes, since she was attending the International Headache Society's annual conference at the upscale Palazzo dei Congressi.

After the first day of meetings, there was a cocktail party on the roof of the Palazzo. These guys provided the entertainment.

Nadia and the men in tights.

The conference palazzo and the hotel were a few miles south of Rome in the EUR district. Here's a lake with a rowing course and some water basketball courts in it.

Nadia engages in the classic American rumination over what to do with the bidet. Didn't these things used to have water spigots that pointed upwards?

Finally, I (and the American Heritage Dictionary) will set the record straight.

bidet (b-d) noun
A fixture similar in design to a toilet that is straddled for bathing the genitals and the posterior parts.
[French, bidet, pony, probably from Old French bider, to trot.]


Here's a great idea. The hotel key had a headphone jack attached to it that fit into this little receptacle in the wall by the door. When you leave the room and pull it out to take the key with you, it turns off all the lights in the room. Come back to the room, put in the jack, and the lights come back on.

The view of Rome from the top of St. Peter's Cathedral.

I was absolutely blown away by the beauty of the churches in Rome. They were so grand, so full of sculptures, paintings, frescoes, ornately carved marble, their size, scale, and proportions were so harmonius, they were so ancient -- they were ripping! They took my breath away.

Photos of these churches don't do them justice. But, of course I had to try. This was taken in St. Peter's cathedral, the largest, if not the most beautiful, church in Rome.

We roamed the backstreets of this amazing city.

The marble was stacked on every corner, art was everywhere you looked.

After 5 days in the capitol, it was time to move on. Nadia figured out the phone system and called for reservations at a cozy inn on the coast.

We took a train north to the tiny town of Vernazza.


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