The Italians know how to build a church.
On this, my first trip to Rome, I dragged DP around the city mercilessly. We stayed in a fantastic little B&B called Il Colle degli Ulivi in Zagarolo, about 30 minutes from Rome’s city centre and travelled into Rome each morning by train. (I love Italian trains). I had a LONG list of things to see… a list generated over thirty years of learning about Roman Catholicism, politics, philosophy, language and art. The city does not disappoint. From wandering through the rubble (see priceless hunks of marble) of the Roman Forum in the rain to our visit to Saint Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel, I was in awe… in love… in the very best history lesson of my life.
On Christmas Day, we spent a quiet day in Zagarola. Two days later, we attended a concert in the city of Palestrina which is built over the ruins of an enormous ancient temple. It is believed that this area has been occupied since the 7th or 8th Century B.C. Bombing during the Second World War exposed many of the ancient ruins and bits of history can now be seen throughout Palestrina. The concert, held in the Cathedral, was performed by a gospel choir from Virginia; they had just played for the Pope.
Photo Credit: DP