Thursday, October 28, 2010


Rome wasn't built in a day. It took years to all fall down as well.

There are ruins all over the city. It seemed to me you couldn't walk very far without seeing some structure falling down and preserved behind a gate because of it. This really gave you an idea of just how old this city is and how important it was.

The area around The Colosseum was filled with ruins. Not surprising, considering The Colosseum is in ruins itself. This was an important political area. Kate and I went on a small tour of the forums which were in ruins (surprised?). The tour guide was quite good, he was pretty funny and informative, especially considering he didn't have a lot of material to work with. A lot of his tour was about that crumbling piece over there used to...left a lot to the imagination.

What made the tour interesting were the tidbits of information he shared with us. For example, instead of bathing with water people of importance bathed with olive oil and sand. They would then scrape the sand off their bodies. This procedure would also strip the hair off their body, which created a distinction between the important people and the hairy barbarians. As a result, to this day we call someone who cuts our hair or shaves us a barber.

There were others as well. How a handshake in Rome showed trust. Usually a greeting was grabbing each others arms in case they had a knife, how a women could be kidnapped for the purpose of getting married and carried away from her family. This is why the groom now traditionally carries his bride over the threshold.

These are only some of the ruins. As I said, they can be found all over the city. They used to hold different types of riches, but those disappeared and ended up in The Vatican. The same tour guide also did tours in The Vatican, and we liked him enough we decided to give him a try for it, which will be the next post.

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