Sunday, August 5, 2012

Rome, Italy, Thursday, August 2, 2012: Finishing Up

We are now about ½ way through our trip. We had a driver coming to pick us up at 11:30 AM and so had a bit more time to catch a couple of more Churches. Santa Maria del Popolo was on the list of sites I wanted to see and we made it there. There are three churches including two that are nearly identical dedicated to Mary. One was closed for refurbishing, but the other was open. For those of you who are Dan Brown fans, we made a search to see if we had covered the churches and sites in the book and movie, Angels and Demons. There was a chapel in the church dedicated to Mary that was key and included a fresco by Raphael. Within this one church, it was the only area that was closed off for renovation. I feel like we got short changed a bit on Raphael on the trip as we also skipped his frescos in the Vatican Museum. Perhaps we will have to come back. From here we headed to the last church, the Santa Maria della Vittoria, from Dan Brown’s book to see the Bernini sculpture, the Ectasy of St. Theresa. Along the way there happened to be a couple of other churches and fountains we had not yet seen. This included the Convento dei Cappuccino which is listed as being among the most bizarre sites in Rome with its ossuary filled with the bones of some 4,000 monks shaped into a variety of alters, figures, lighting and so on. No pictures were allowed and it is probably just as well.

We liked the hotel key.

The Ecstacy of St. Teresa by Bernini

The shower in the room was not overly large.

By now, we are starting to worry about time, but made it to see the last sculpture on the list and hoofed it back to the Pantheon and our hotel. It was now about 11:10, but just enough time for a last gelato, get our luggage, check out and into the car. One interesting thing about our hotel is that the elevator starts on the first floor rather than the ground floor. I am glad we didn’t have to move our luggage up and down much. Rome is fading in the background and we are on our way to Munich and the driving phase of our trip. Stayed tuned for more to come.

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