Tuesday, May 29. Monica and Graziana picked me up at 7:15 AM and we drove to Bologna, parted company with Graziana, and Monica and I caught the train to Rome. The two-hour high-speed train ride went quickly, then we fumbled around a bit trying to find the guesthouse we’re staying in. The elevator going up to the guesthouse was laughable, as it was so tiny there was barely enough room to turn around to manually close the doors. The room itself is very small, also. This is not luxury living by any means. But it will do. We then fulfilled one of my childhood dreams and ticked off another of my bucket list items by walking to and around and into the Coliseum. At first it was like, “Oh wow, I’m really here.” Then it was easy to get caught up in what actually happened there—a lot of very brutal stuff with much killing. I also learned that the Coliseum was built on the backs of Jewish prisoners, whom the Roman Empire had captured. But then you clue into the architecture itself; a truly an amazing sight. How could they design and build a building like this without the benefits of modern technology? It’s mind-boggling. We ate a lasagna lunch overlooking the Coliseum, as I decided to cast gluten- and dairy-free to the winds. Then we took the long, very warm walk back to the guesthouse, where I took a shower then a nap. I nearly overslept again, as Monica phoned me at 7:30 PM and we went out on the town, not drinking or dancing but taking in the lively Rome nightlife in a real nice part of the city. We bumped into the Trevi Fountain (Fontana di Trevi), which is certainly a sight to see, took in the Piazza di Spanga and Via Dei Condotti. We settled down to eat in a bar with walls lined with wine bottles. I had a light salad. Then of course I had to top it all off with more straciatella, trying to relive the experience I had in Rimini, but, comparatively, it was a letdown and I could have done without it. Then on the way back, Monica and I were standing up talking in the fairly crowded subway car, and a young woman got up off her seat and asked me if I wanted her seat. That was a first! I couldn’t believe it. My first thought was, “Oh my God, do I look that old now?” I thanked her and politely refused. It was very nice of her, but really? We didn’t get back to the guesthouse until 11:00 PM. Really nice day (minus my subway experience — I don’t even want to know that it’s all how I think of it).