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  • Day347

    Day 348: To Rome, the long way round

    January 28, 2018 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 14 °C

    Super long day of travelling today! Left our apartment around 7:45am, heading northwest towards Florence. It was a 2 hour drive and we had to get the car back by 10am. Had to fill up twice (once at the start of the journey since we were low), and again at the end since the needle had moved and we needed to return it full.

    Made it just before 10am, caught the shuttle bus from the rental car desks to the airport proper, then the 10:30am bus from the airport directly into the city. We were the only occupants, surprisingly!

    Our train to Rome wasn't until 11:40 - we'd purposely booked in quite a bit of leeway since the bus from the airport is only every 30 minutes, and missing the 10:30 bus would've been cutting it quite fine! So we waited for 45 minutes or so in a cafe before boarding the train.

    Rather than a slow regional train, we'd booked a semi-high speed train that went directly to Rome, so we were actually only on board for about 90 minutes. Our Airbnb host was running late and said that he'd meet us at Termini station rather than the flat at 2pm, so we headed into a fancy market food court thing and waited in there.

    He showed up promptly at 2pm and drove us over to the apartment, down in the south-east of the city. It's a bit out of town, in the "up and coming" Pigneto district. Feels a bit like a Newtown sort of district, lots of street art and hipsters with French Bulldogs having brunch at outdoor cafes, but still with that slightly edgy feel. Though I guess a lot of Rome has that feeling - I always forget home much grime, filth and graffiti is in this city!

    Massimiliano showed us around the neighbourhood in his car then left us in the apartment to our own devices. Since we've both been here before and we had quite an early start, neither of us felt compelled to jump up and head out, so in we stayed. Finally a decent internet connection for the first time in a week!

    Though we did go out in the evening for dinner. First we went to a recommended place, but despite being empty the waiter seated us and left us with a menu then disappeared for 15 minutes. He was a bit gruff as well, so we just got up and walked out without ordering. Visited another place and had an aperitivo, two drinks and a platter of nibblies which are included in the drinks price. After a surprising amount of food, we just headed for the local pizza-by-the-slice joint to fill up on the rest of dinner.
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