Roman Holiday

A guided tour of Rome this morning. The weather was a little schizophrenic with alternating sun and showers. Whenever it rains in Italy a small fleet of young men suddenly appear selling brollies for €5 so my clients can stay dry if they’ve forgotten protection.

Our guide this morning was Monica and she was excellent. I had a little chat with her during coffee break – she told us that the Coliseum was held together with ‘Semen’ so I helped her pronounce ‘Cement’ for future tours. Probably just as well!

Local Guide Monica kept us beautifully informed.
SPQR, Senatus Populusque Romanus, which translates to ‘ The Senate and People of Rome’ is everywhere. So it was in Roman times gone by, symbolising the power and authority of the state. Nowadays it’s a municipal symbol of the city of Rome, here seen on a manhole cover.
I was pleased to se that Rome has erected a statue of me, as a Tour Manager checking my phone for a late platform change on the Firenze-Rome FrecciaRossa. A startling resemblance I’m sure you’ll agree!
From this central balcony, Benito Mussolini announced the declaration of war on the allies in 1940. There’s a YouTube clip of it below. A dreadful man who brought only shame, suffering and sorrow to Italy. He should have been shot……… Oh!

Today was Election Day in Italy. Not that the many tourists in central Rome appeared to notice. Electing a Prime Minister in Italy is a rather lengthy and complicated process. They’ll know the results for the political parties tonight, but selecting a Prime Minister involves negotiations and alliances can take months.

Just as importantly, today was the day of the ‘Great Global Greyhound Walk’, starting in Australia and working its’ way round the world. Italy joined in…

I’ve put a gallery of photos below of our walking tour of Rome. It doesn’t matter how many times you have seen it – the place is astonishing every time.

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