Our last day to roam around in Rome was gray and rainy. But we were still in Rome, and that still beats rainy at home. We lazied around until C had read all his Swiss newspapers online and thought it was time to go out.
We set out with the intention of going to Piazza Navona but a one-street detour took us way out our way and unexpectedly into the Chiesa Nuova. This was nowhere in my radar, so I was reminded once again that this city is filled over the brim with wondrous sights that can go entirely ignored but would be considered headliner attractions anywhere else.
The very nice, extremely polite, rather handsome, and entirely fluent in English AND Spanish kids that were staffing the church talked us into trying the audio guide they were developing. Now, anyone that is interested in writing script for guides should listen to this one; they were done right. Just enough information to get your interest whetted if you are into art and still hold the interest of the casual tourist. Even C listened attentively to the whole thing. (I usually wind up telling him the highlights).
They script writers at the Doria Pamphilij should take notes. The audio for the apartments was the worst ever! Nonsensical babbling and bantering without content. Ugh!
Chiesa Nuova, technically named Santa Maria in Vallicella, has enough Ruben’s, Caravaggio’s and Pietro da Cortona’s to satisfy even the most demanding connoisseurs. Though the site was consecrated in the 12th C, it is better known as the church where Saint Filippo Neri did his apostolate work in the mid 16th C. During his tenure it was remodeled by Counter-reform standards. I was not familiar with the details of his story but it was certainly interesting to learn.
Filippo’s tomb decorated with mother-of-pearl is worth a detour on its own.
As we exited, we (I) got our bearings back and made our way back into Campo di Fiori where we had to take temporary shelter from the rain.
We picked up some ‘street food’ savory pastries along Via del Capellari. C’s was a wurst/sausage in a cornetto/pretzels that would have been absolutely perfect with a little mustard. Mine was just like a savory donut filled with ham and cheese. We are both stuffed for the rest of the day.
Our destination for the day was Palazzo Braschi in Piazza Navona, and its temporary exhibit: ‘Artemisia Gentileschi E Il Suo Tempo’. This artist was one of the very few female painters that was able to work under her own name and has had her legacy come through the centuries into our time.
I enjoyed this extensive exhibit tremendously. Her ‘Judith Beheading Holofernes’, there are 2 versions, are absolutely amazing and worth the trip and the entrance price. Absolutely recommended…. Though I think it only has one more week to go.
After that, there was not much more to do. We walked back to Trastevere, had a last Spritz at Cave Canum where they FINALLY realized we were ‘regulars’, serving us efficiently and even offering bruschette on the house when we came in under the pouring rain.
Dinner was at a nearby restaurant, Trattoria da Cencia, mostly because of the rain and it sort of made sense to go back to the first restaurant we went to. We shared an appetizer of grilled vegetables and then we both had Tonnarelli alla pescatore; C without tomato in the sauce as his heartburn has been acting up during the night, and mine with. Both were good. The pannacotta with caramel was borderline inedible.
But since we had ‘only’ had a single bottle of wine (with dinner), C suggested we go into the local bar where the guys were waging a full war of foosball. A few more glasses of wine were imbibed. And he thinks -or has convinced himself!- that it’s the tomato sauce which is giving him ‘agida’ heartburn!?!?…..lol.
Whatever we were going to get done had been crossed off The Spreadsheet. Those that remained undone will have to wait for the next time. We pray for health, energy and funds to come back as many times as our hearts desire.
So that is it.The full story of our 2 Weeks of Roman Roamings. Once again, thank you all for reading along. Cin Cin. Now, off to Naples we go.
— Notes from Thursday, April 27th