Our last full day in Rome was great. Monday the kids slept in until 10 AM while Kristin and I enjoyed breakfast in Hotel Alexandra's dining room. We leisurely made our way back to the Spanish Steps and then Via Del Corso to the Piazza del Popolo. The day was overcast with on and off light drizzle which made for very comfortable conditions. How is that people with money can make a sweatshirt and torn jeans look trendy while my Banana Republic jeans and polo shirt suggest I just rolled out of a double-wide trailer? I need to get a pair of shoes while here, though. The styles are just so more cool than what I can find at Schuler Shoes in Highland Park.
After some filling street fare pizza, we made our way back to Vatican City and endured the long, but fast-moving line to St Peters Basilica. The stories I had read about the no-shorts rule were quickly falsified as I witnessed several people in cut-offs, and one Black Sabbath t-shirt wearer, enter without conditions. The Basilica was truly breathtaking. It tends to be too much for the senses when you're surrounded by so much humanity, though. We were too late for the dome climb and will try to check that off our last in 8 days when returning to Rome.
We fittingly finished off the day with dinner at Dino E Tony's Hostaria, north of Vatican City. This was easily the best and most memorable dining experience in Rome. The hosts were enthusiastically welcoming and fun, giving Sam and Sydney a playfully hard time. We sat next to a young couple from Belgium who had Italian roots.
Unfortunately, we missed the last metro subway train of the day heading east, so had to resort to our normal way of travel back to the hotel ... by foot.
Off to Venice by train tomorrow.