Post for Friday 6/26/09:
This was going to be a long day. Our bus left this morning at 6:30, so we were all up bright and early. The bus ride itself was fairly uneventful with most people sleeping for a large portion of it. We made a couple of quick stops along the way for stretching and lunch, and eventually made it to Rome around 3 pm. Our bus driver got a little lost in the city so we got to ride around for a while before finally getting to the Grand Hotel Palatino. After a short time to get settled in the rooms, the learning commenced again. We went across the street and up some steps and arrived at the church of San Pietro in Vincoli, which houses the chains of Saint Peter. The church also contains Michelangelo’s Moses, originally to be part of the Tomb of Pope Julius II.
From there, we walked down the street and suddenly were presented with a view of the Colosseum as we turned a corner.
We didn’t go inside the Colosseum this afternoon, just walked around the outside until we made it to the Arch of Constantine.
From there we went to the Circus Maximus to have a short lecture about some of the sites we had already seen. Making a big loop around the outside of the Forum and the Palatine Hill, we came to a small courtyard right outside the Mamertine Prison where we sat and watched a performance of “The Life of Michelangelo” by The Miracle Players. Here’s a picture of the character of Pope Julius II
The play was very good and really funny. We then headed back to the hotel for dinner. After that, a few of us went out to look at some of the monuments that were lit up at night. This picture of the Colosseum is one of my favorites so far from this trip:
Tomorrow is the Colosseum, Forum, Palatine Hill, and Capitoline Museums!