We said goodbye to Trey and Randi yesterday and the wonderful country of Serbia. It was sad. We both feel like we will be back again. I could write a whole other blog entry about the things I learned in Serbia, but that will have to wait.
Because now we are in Rome, and I am so tired! But we are skyping with the kids in 45 minutes, so I have to keep myself awake. We arrived in Rome yesterday and our first experience was realizing that all European drivers are crazy. It wasn't just Serbia. Our hotel driver scared me to death. But we arrived safely, and on the way were immediately struck with the beauty of Rome. We dumped our stuff and walked a little to get the lay of the land. I was overwhelmed with the size and majesty of buildings here, some that are thousands of years old. They are just mixed in with the rest of the city that is "new" as our driver told us, only built before WWII. Its all unbelievable.
Today we went and saw the Colosseam, Arch of Constantine, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill. Jason and I are not really history buffs, except for Biblical history. So some of it was just old buildings. But we were fascinated by an exhibit at the Colosseam about Emperor Nero who has always been taught to us as an evil man who used Christians as his scapegoat and as torches. The exhibit never mentioned anything about the Christians, and made it sound like he wasn't near as bad as history has made him out to be. No mention that Christians were used as targets in the Colosseam entertainment for the lions. Very interesting to us. Our favorite thing was the Arch of Titus at the Roman Forum, which commemorates the Roman victory over Israel in A.D. 70. Not that it was a happy thing, just the main piece of Christian history we saw today.
We came back to the hotel and rested for a few minutes and then walked to the Vatican to make sure we knew how to get there because we have an early tour scheduled tomorrow. Well, we realized its too far to walk in the morning, so we are calling a taxi. But there and back, with a long detour to find a McDonalds, was probably five miles, so my feet are angry at me right now. But we ended the day with chocolate gelato in front of the Pantheon, so hopefully they will forgive me soon and work properly in the morning for the Vatican tour.
Oh yeah. And what red head forgot to pack sunscreen? That would be me. And it was a beautiful cloudless 95 degree day today. My skin isn't happy with me either. Next doot to the McDonalds was a drug store where I spent entirely too much on sunscreen and aloe vera lotion, but it was a dire necessity for the rest of the week.