From Hot to Cold

All Roads Lead to Rome

I guess it’s time to play a little catch up for everybody. It’s been a while since I’ve posted and since I’ve lost my computer I’ve been very much more at the whim of public computers with weird keyboards, high costs (not too bad... but not as cheap as free), and slow old hardware.

Trevor and I spent four nights in Rome. We arrived into Rome city center fairly late (maybe 2300 hours). We had a couple of ideas of hostels, but they all seemed to be booked. We ran around the city center for about 2 hours with our packs but were unsuccessful in finding a cheap hostel. We finally settled to stay at this over priced place (about 30 Euros a night) for the first night. The next morning we made our way to Camping Plus about 50 km outside of town. It was pretty perfect, and probably had the best showers that we’ve had the entire trip. I made my way back into town and wondered around the Vatican. I spent most of my time in a the St. Pietro. It was an amazing church. You can see about half of my photos from Rome and the Vatican, but the rest will have to wait till I get back to the states and figure out what to do with my computer. I also found my way to the Pantheon, an amazing building. I came back before it got to late and hung out with some travelers from the UK in the bar at the campsite.

Trevor and I ended up not seeing the sites together in Rome. Maybe it was time to have a break from hanging out 24 7. The next morning, sleeping in was a glorious experience. I made my way to the Colosseum. It is truly a massive building. Laying out in the grass in front I got to hear a part of a English speaking tour for free. In front of the Colosseum, there were all of these guy’s dressed like Romans for you to take your picture with. I should have expected that they were going to try to rip me off, when he asks if my watch was a rollex (I spent 10 Euro’s to buy a watch because I was so tired of never having a clue what time it was). I asked him how much to take a picture, and he said a tip. Got a couple of amazing pictures. Then he held onto my camera and said that it was going to be 10 Euros (about 16 USD). I told him to just delete the pictures.

I made my way back to the campsite to go swimming for a bit. Then I met up with some travelers that I had met the night before. A girl from Sweden and one from Ukraine. We had planned to go out into Rome that evening. After getting some food and making a quick stop back at their tent before taking off, they found out that somebody had stolen a bunch of their stuff. Some of it was very expensive too. We spent much of the evening trying to talk to the police (so they could get money back from their insurance). Then we played Mao until early in the morning. Good times. Me and Trevor met up with them again and wondered around the city later the next day. Our plane left the next morning at like 5am... stupid early. We decided not to sleep and just go to the airport with our bags. We ended up not figuring out how to get to the train stop that we were attempting to, but found a group of Italian youth who were actually heading to the same airport.

You must really attempt to imagine this. We are o a bus, and realize that we just missed our stop. I hear some people talking to the bus driver about the Camino airport (another Ryan Air stop). We are trying to communicate with them, although they don’t speak English. After following them, we find out that they are planning to walk to the airport. We see them stop and ask for directions several times and go the wrong direction at least once. The entire trek took about an hour and a half, while carrying our bags. By the end we were drenched in sweat, but proud of ourselves.

Cities Instead of Capitals, the Town of Bergemo

Much of our trip so far, we have only really hit up capitals and major cities within a country. Bergemo was a nice break from that. Although less people spoke English, people were more willing to help. We met a waiter who was very excited to meet us when he heard us speak English. As soon as he heard we were from the USA, he asked Obama or McCain. We spent two nights at Bergamo Youth Hostel. It was pretty fantastic, except that it cost 8 Euros to do laundry.

Do You Really Have to Know Where Something is to Fly There, Riga

We weren’t sure were we were going next so we decided to see where was fairly cheap to fly to, and stay (i.e. Eastern Europe). We found a city, Riga in Latvia. Neither of us had ever heard of Latvia or Riga, but it sounded like a great plan. We just went, not knowing anything and it was a great city. We stayed at Friendly Fun Franks Hostel. What a name hu? It was a really great place, although a bit rowdy. Any place that you walk in the door and they tell you take your backpack off and ask you if you want a free beer before even checking you in is pretty amazing. We wondered around Riga for two days. We got to see the view from the tallest church that overlooks the city and the river. We met some pretty cool Irish travelers. We explored a lot of the old USSR buildings. It was a great time.

It gets colder, Poland

Currently I’m in Poland. Krakow to be precise. We took a 12 hour overnight bus from Riga to Warsaw, and spent the night before last in Warsaw. Then Yesterday we came to Krakow. Krakow is a pretty cool old town. Much of it dates back to the 13th Century and it was left un-touched during the War. More to come soon.