Saturday, November 5, 2011
Travel by Margot Justes
I haven't posted a blog for a while, thought I'd be able to do it while on vacation...I was wrong.
The flight to Rome left on time, the plane was half full, or empty depending on how you see it, and we landed on time, eight in the morning. Italian customs process not a breeze, long lines that moved at a snail's pace, but it was expected and the process seemed exciting, because Roma was waiting for me.
I arranged for a driver before leaving home and was happy to see him. I recognized him immediately, he was holding a plaque with my name plastered on it...even for me it was hard to miss. Things were good.
The hotel room was not ready, but they promised a lovely room and stored the baggage. I was free to spend my first day in Rome, and since the hotel was within walking distance of practically everything, especially the Spanish Steps, I headed there first, but not before stopping for an espresso.
Did you know that Italians stand at a counter and gulp their espresso. I found out that if you stand the price is cheaper than if you sit down at a table. It was the quick inhale of the brew that had me amazed, like a shot. I savored mine.
I made it down the Spanish steps, many, many steps, walked around all the lovely little cobble stone streets. Amazingly enough the locals wore heels and the cobblestones had big gaps between them. I watched how well they maneuvered to miss what looked like pot holes. Most tourists knew better and wore comfortable shoes.
Stopped at a lovely outdoor cafe and had lunch, was serenaded by a couple of tenors, after they passed a hat and demanded a tip, they moved on to the next cafe.
The Sofitel delivered as promised-we has a suite, absolutely gorgeous with a balcony and a fantastic view of Rome, and there was a Nespresso machine in the room, so I could enjoy delicious coffee at will. The stay at the Sofitel was simply amazing, I would recommend the hotel without any reservations on my part-you need to make reservations to actually stay there.
What a terrific start to the vacation...more next week
Till next time,
A Hotel in Paris