In 2006 we were in Rome en route to a Mediterranean cruise. I never thought to be in Rome ever again. Having visited many cities in the United States we often used bus tours to see more than we ever would on foot, and to get a feeling (however false) of the place. In 2006 this method was perfect given the very short time we had available in the city. One of the structures the bus drove by was the Roman Forum. I did not know it was the Forum Romanum, and if I did I had no notion of the significance of the location. It was impressive, and its visual imprint stuck with me. In 2015 I knew I had been there before. The first night the cruise offered for an additional $95 cash per person a bus tour of their own including a dinner at an outdoor restaurant. The food was not memorable. The wine was. One of the stops was on a hill above the Circus Maximus. Over across the Circus Maximus in the gloom of early evening was the Palatine Hill. There was a reference to emperors and marble. Zooming ahead nine years and four grandchildren Iím standing in the morning light with the Hat in the Roman Forum. After lunch we came back and went up to the Palatine. I thought the Palatine was what was perched on the edges of the hill, here above the Forum, and above the Circus Maximus, but it is a massive operation that encompasses the whole of the hill dripping down into the valleys here and there like brown brick molasses.
January 27th, 2016
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