O Come All Ye Faithful
Yes I am back from the amazing Italy.
Exhausted. Foot sore with blisters all over because of all the walking and the rain did not help as I kept stepping into puddles. It is only 8am. I can't sleep anymore even though I am really tired. I think my brain is conditioned to wake up early now. Have been waking up early to get good photos as the sun sets at about 4ish. I now walk like a Duracell battery rabbit. I never thought I could walk so much! We walked most of the time and hardly took any public transport in Italy except for the water bus in Venice. I still can't quite believe how I walked from one end of the city to the other, how I climbed the Leaning Tower of Pisa, St Peter's Bassilica, the Duomo in Florence…
Our first stop Venezia..
Venice which is my favourite.It is not smelly at all and I am glad I saw it before it sinks. It feels very old world. It is a special city in itself with little streets and no roads or motorways, only canals. Oh ya and loads of 'ponte' ( bridges). We also spent half a day at the island of Murano, nothing much there but it was quieter than Venice which was bustling with tourists.
Next up is Firenze @ Florence. It took a while for me to get used to crossing busy streets. I really missed the peacefulness of Venice where there is no cars and all you hear is the gentle flow of the waters in the canals.
But Florence is a must visit for people who love art. We saw the real David and the 2 fake ones. Je te presente Monsieur David…
The pic above is the fake one which we can see for free. The real one is ten times glorious. Not allowed to take pics in the Galleria D'Academia though.I always read and hear about him. Finally I get to see him. I never understood all the hype until I saw him. I bow in admiration to Michelangelo. Went to a couple of museums but my favourite is still Raphael's angels. Had diner at an award winning Oysteria at the other side of the River Arno. ZS had 'bambi' ( deer meet as the waitress described it ) with home made spaggeti and I had a very nice mussel soup. The crostini ( bread with load of cheese on top) was really yummy too. The food is really good and reasonably priced too. The view from the other side from Piazza Michelangelo took my breath away..
Took the train for half a day at Pisa. Saw Leaning Tower of Pisa. Climbed to the second most top level and was in awe and busy taking pictures. When I wanted to climb to the very top. People on top were busy coming down so I had to wait for them to come down because there was only one narrow stairs leading to it. Finally when I wanted to climb up, the guide shouted at me ' Time is Over!' What the hell!! I was only a few stairs away from the top!
More of Pisa….
Our final destination.. Roma.
Walked for almost 1 hour from our hostel to Vatican City.
It was amazing to attend Sunday mass at St Peter's. We also got a glimpse of Pope Benedict XVI when he appeared at his window to say the weekly Angelus. There were so many people there. I never saw such a big crowd all my life. I could feel joy in everyone there. After the Angelus, everyone started singing Alleluia in Italian. It was so beautiful that I can't stop the tears from my eyes.
I love these trees along the Tiber River..
It was raining but we went still made it to The Colloseum. I hate to imagine the Barbaric Sports the Romans love so much.
We visited the Vatican Museum. The Last Judgement by Michelangelo in Sistene Chapel was unbelievable. It is the work of a genius. The painting felt 3D like they were going to pop up. The view from the Cuppola ( Dome) after a breathless climb to the top..
After loads of walking, with loads of pizzas, gelato(s) , paninis , risoto and pasta, the much look forward trip has come to an end. It feels good yesterday to come back here. Thank you Shu for making me and my bro diner. Seems like ages I had rice and I have been craving for it.
I am grateful to God for making this trip happen. It has been so unbelievable. I realised that God has a time for everything. He planned everything so beautifully and All we have to do is trust Him. Somehow there was mass almost everytime we enter a church.I felt very touched by His grace. Loads of concerned family and friends have warned me about pick pockets in Rome but I felt really safe walking around Rome, even at night. Perhaps there was an angel watching after us when we were travelling.
This trip would not have been the same without my lil brother. He always made sure we have enough water. He was always a comfort when we got lost in the streets. He makes me laugh when the rain gets me down.
Grazie and God bless you always.