Sunday, October 16, 2011

Marriage, Rome, and the first day

Hopefully, this blog entry and the ones following from Rome will look okay! I'm publishing blog entries from our honeymoon to keep friends and family up to date, and keep an electronic scrapbook off what happened while we were on our dream honeymoon!

We got married on the thirteenth of October, with Nate's parents present. I thought that this would just be an official confirmation of how we felt anyway, but it has been so much more- the happiest day of my life! I found myself staring at his wedding ring, and mine, in some shock at first, and then it's now become a pleasure. This wonderful man is my husband! His parents- my parents! I even have a brother now. Our wedding reception, though just a few of us present because many of the people in our lives still live in California. We had it at Zaytinya, a Greek-Turkish restaurant owned by our favorite cook in Washington, DC, and it was warm and congenial, with people enjoying great food and company, passing plates and sharing good times. Exactly what we were hoping for!

The next day (yesterday), we started on our journey to Rome via JFK, and arrived this morning at nearly 11. We took a taxi from the airport to our hotel, and as we entered the old city wall (Aurelian walls), we were more and more excited to see the Palantine Hill, Colosseum....Our room wasn't quite ready yet, so we found a place down the street to eat, that, from the outside, looked quite unremarkable but had neat bronze vaulted ceilings and marble pillars. After that and a short nap, I was much less homicidal, and ready to see....

The Borghese Gallery! It has amazing Bernini sculptures (one made my eyes tear up it was so amazing), that look like soft flesh figures made of marble. It also has the best collection of Caravaggio paintings around, and a completely over the top villa. I attached some photos below. We spent the rest of the afternoon strolling the Borghese gardens with the locals, and I took some photos of things I saw around the gardens, and a cute old couple. I know folks at home are worried about the riots in Rome, but the only sign of them I've seen so far is a poster that I'll put a photo of at the end of the blog.

So far, I'm fascinated by the way Italians use the evening stroll and parks to broaden the village like feel of their lives. Groups of young and old meet in the parks for picnics, to read, or just sit and talk or stroll. I'm also fascinated by how colorful the men are. Definitely one of the species where the male has more flashy plumage than the women, which is saying a lot. I keep telling Nate how underdressed I feel -I need to step it up a little, apparently. I'm also in love with the drinking fountains -they're sculptures! Nate and I saw Romans carting jugs to the fountains to fill them for their own use (isn't this the same water they get out of the tap, that no one drinks in the restaurants?!), and decided we would do the same. So now, my water consumption has gone way up (which is good) because I'm completely thrilled when I find a new water fountain sculpture. I have a photo of my favorite one so far. I even had a chance to hear some other Americans see Nate and I filling our water bottles, and say, "oh no way, I'm not doing that." I think we're going to survive since they've been drinking out of the fountains for a long time, but if we get cholera, you'll know where it came from.

Lastly, we went to Cafe Paris, since it had a terrace, had a glass of wine, and pasta. I had a creamed gnocchi with fresh seasonal vegetables on pumpkin flan, and Nate had a carbonara with zucchini blossoms. I love this city! Tomorrow, the ancient Rome tour. Good night!

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