It being Sunday, it seemed apt to be relaxing in a park, so I headed to the Borghese Gardens, former backyard of the Borghese family and now a massive public park.
I took the Spanish Steps up to the gardens - that early they were mercifully free from the crowds that have engulfed them the last two times I've been past. And see those nuns? There are nuns on shore leave all over Rome, toting Nike backpacks and digital cameras. Who says the church isn't moving with the times?
Up in the gardens there are busts of famous Italians lining several avenues. I found Scipio Africanus, defeater of Hannibal and possessor of a head like a bongo, Niccolo Machiavelli, version leper, and Leonardo da Vinci, about to take a bath when the sculptor knocked at the door.
Goethe, possibly sans pants.
Oh, the picturesque!
And again. I think this is a copy of an actual ancient ruin.
It's my boy Byron! Sadly missing one of his beautiful girlish hands.
I wound my way back from the gardens via the Trevi Fountain. This place is constantly swarming with people. I didn't throw any coins, because what if they're collected and distributed to causes I don't care for, like ending poverty and curing child cancer?
Santa Maria Maggiore. Maggiore in this case means "major", and when Rome calls something major you know it's serious. The place is huge, and appears even more so due to the fact that it's on its own block and not hemmed in by other buildings.
Sadly this blurred in the low light, but you can still see the altar of Triple H where people come to worship, in Santa Maria Maggiore.
I wasn't sure what "crollo" meant; I really hoped this translated as "Danger of Crullers".
Alas, no, it's "Danger of Collapse", and it's referring to the remains of the Baths of Trajan. If anyone ever discredits a movie about Ancient Rome because everyone is "too clean", yell facts at them about how many thousands of people these public baths could accommodate.
Saint Chillin'. This is part of the tomb of Pope Julius II in San Pietro in Vincoli. The pope is seen here kicking it old school - literally, because apparently this reclining-style effigy is based on Etruscan tombs.
From the front door of San Pietro in Vincoli, just as it cleared up from an afternoon of rain. It was amusing to see that the instant it started raining the street vendors, who usually roam about with sunglasses or knockoff handbags, were all suddenly selling umbrellas. It was not so amusing that they all kept trying to sell me an umbrella. Even though I was already holding one. Sheesh.