When in Rome… (including a tribute to Jon’s mustache)

After 2 weeks of farming and touring Catalonia in Spain, we are now on a 2 week adventure throughout Italy with Jon’s parents! First stop Rome. Here are some tips we have if you decide to visit this thrilling and beautiful country:


Inside the Colosseum


When in Rome…

– Sleep in, enjoy a big breakfast at your Airbnb, and pack a lunch. Splurge on dinner.

– Be the first one through the restaurant doors at 7:30pm for dinner because you couldn’t wait until the 9pm normal dinner hour. Order wine and bread. For your first course, order pasta (duh) and then for the second course, a meat or fish dish. No one will bring you the check unless you ask for it three times, but they may bring you a free after dinner limoncelo! (a lemon liquor).

– Don’t feel bad when you don’t leave a tip. The locals will thank you for not setting new expectations.

– After a long day of walking, take a rest at a restaurant with a spectacular view of the Colosseum and order beer or wine and buffalo mozzarella.


– Purchase a Roma Pass at the airport for $36. It will get you into two sites for free without waiting in line and all of the public transportation you will need. Pat yourself on the back even though no one even asked to see it.

– Don’t talk or take pictures in the Sistine Chapel or else you will get a major shushing!

– Give money to the guy playing the cello outside of the Pantheon. His music will move you.


– Hail a cab when your feet hurt from walking so much, you get lost, or you are running late to your 10:30am ticket time to the Vatican. The Papa is waiting! Feel relieved when you realize that cabs are cheap and the ticket time is not strict.

– Close your eyes and imagine the glory and fury of the Trevi Fountain when it isn’t under construction.


– Drink the water straight from the taps and fountains around the city (even by the gutter) as often as possible. It tastes fantastic!

– Stop into one of the infinite gelato shops, order two flavors and the size your stomach desires and walk with it along the cobblestone streets.

– Drink lots of cheap good wine and buy lots of cheap amazing bread!

– Watch Italians doing Italian things like yelling at each other across the street with big hand gestures.

– Shove and push your way onto the metro like everyone else. Breath slowly, cover your mouth with your scarf, and think happy thoughts when the metro doesn’t move for 20 minutes.


– Don’t rely on google maps! It may tell you that the rental car station is only a few blocks from your house but it isn’t. It is actually much further. Don’t spend an entire morning trying to find the dang thing! Not that we did or anything…

– Cook Italian food and sing along to Dean Martin’s That’s Amore. “When the Moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie…”


– When you leave Rome, drive like hell just like the rest of the country!

– Laugh, eat, and drink wine a lot…as the Romans do!


More photos from Rome:








Skyline from Palentine Hill



At the Forum



Entrance to the Forum








Wisteria everywhere! Smells lovely.



The Vatican




Spanish Steps



Inside the Pantheon



Looking out from within the Pantheon



Colosseum at night. Magical.

And in case the Colosseum, Vatican, and other Roman ruins weren’t spectacular enough, here is a tribute to Jon’s mustache which was shaved at 11:35pm on Wednesday April 22, 2015. Can you find Jon?

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