Rome is definitely a popular place of tourism for people on religious quests, on the to-do list of experience seekers or a place for a well-deserved leisure period. Which justifies my holiday because:
- I grew up in Catholicism,
- I’ve suddenly realised in my late 30s that I haven’t lived and a girl needs a holiday,
- I have completed another whole degree with my sanity still intact.
I’m by no means a Rome travel guru but during my brief visit to Rome, I observed a few things that I’m sharing in this post
1. HANDING OUT PAYMENT AND RECEIVING CHANGE
I recall buying something in a supermarket and having the cashier place the change on the counter even though my hand was outstretched, gesturing that I wanted my change in my hand. I thought that was rude but I ignored it. However, it happened again in another shop which I found rather odd. I later learnt that it is part of Italian culture to put the payment or change on a small tray which remain on the counter close to the register. It is interesting how we assume that someone is rude or odd just because they are displaying a behaviour unfamiliar to us. I was the odd one because after all I was in Rome and therefore had to do what the Romans do.
2. GRAFFITI “ART”
Is grafitti art? Perhaps that is a debatable subject. Personally, I find carefully designed 3d colourful graffiti to be creative in some places as opposed to scribbles on a wall which comes off as defacing and vandalism. I found it quite interesting that there were graffiti literally everywhere in Rome. I wondered if it was not illegal in Italy considering the scale of it.
After some probing, I found that graffiti “art” in Italy does not have any gang connotations as in other countries but are usually sports and politics related. That does not excuse it either,both art. 639 – “Littering or defacing of someone else’s property” and art. 635 of the Italian Criminal Code – “Damaging” are applicable in fact to “non-authorized” street art. So how then is there so much graffiti about in Rome? Please comment below if you know why.
3. STREET HAWKERS
Is Being as anal as I am, prior to embarking on my travel to Rome, I watched an insanely unhealthy number of YouTube videos about scams targeted at tourists in Rome, just so I did not fall victim to any.
That was a costly scam I was looking to avoid. So at first I was wide- eyed trying to spot the scams and being nothing but a pain to those I went on holiday with.
“Keep your hands in your pocket”, I said, “lest someone puts a selfie stick in it and demands that you pay an insane amount for it”.
It’s safe to say I was a bit too much from the start. But trust me, before I learnt about the abundance of made-for-drinking water fountains in Rome and after the scorching Roman sun had dried out my body moisture, I, myself was reaching out for those chilled bottles of water sold by the hawkers. Actually, the water costed just an euro so I am not sure what those YouTube videos are on about. But then why is an extra chilled bottle of water cheaper than that sold in the shops? Does that mean they are unwholesome? Well that’s a topic for another day. But seriously, those street hawkers are in the sun all day and for what? A Euro a bottle? Rather sad.
4. KEEPING FIT ON PASTA AND PIZZA
Why are the Italians in shape even after eating all that pasta and pizza? I thought it was just my cousin and I who noticed until I typed it into Google search. Seemingly, the rest of the world is asking too. Well apparently, they cut out on sweets, eat low-fat diet, less red meat and are physically active. No wonder finding a confectionary shop was rather tasking
WHAT INTERESTS YOU MOST ABOUT ROME? AND WHAT ARE SOME TRAVEL TIPS YOU HAVE? LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.