Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Piazza di Spagna

Piazza di Spagna, originally uploaded by CharlesFred.

This is a photo of the Spanish Steps, which in May is decked out with bright pink azeleas. Difficult to see the azeleas in this photo as there are so many people.

We have been to Rome many many times and I have never seen it so full of people. I always said that, unlike Florence, Rome is big enough to take all the tourists which can be thrown at it. But no more it seems.

Everywhere one goes, at least in the touristy areas, the city is full. Full of Christians. Full of schoolchildren. Full of Americans. Full of Pakistanis. You cannot see the latter here but they were there, all standing around selling contraband, fake Prada and Gucci bags and belts and sunglasses. People who may or may not have permission to live in Italy selling goods which are almost certainly illegal.

Maybe it is because it is May, and the guidebooks suggest that this is the best month for visiting, that there are so many people. Maybe it is because the previous pope died last year, that gave the city some extra publicity (like Brad and Angelina in Namibia at the moment). Maybe it is the effect of Dan Brown's Angels and Demons. But there are lots and lots of Christians around town. They even have their own bus service, which happens to be sponsored by the European Union (strangely enough). Many of them go to see His Holiness, Sister Josephine in the Vatican. He of the red Prada shoes.


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