Before we leave Roma, here are a few more images with which we’ll say goodbye (or au revoir as they say in Europe).
Not sure where this picture (photo: pictured above) before this text (picture: prior) was taken (see previous photo: pictured), but it’s a nice building and nice trees. My best guess is that it’s across from Vatican city. But ultimately, who cares? We’re leaving Rome. We’re done with it. It’s boring now… and WAY too hot!
Have a look at the next photo (pictured: below). Um, yeah, I guess it’s not true what they say about Italians being humourless morons. They put a face on the façade of a building (seen: after this text)! I saw this and literally thought it might start talking to me! It didn’t, but I had to worry about camera shake I was laughing so hard (photo: scroll a bit further).
I was given unprecedented access to a real Roman courtyard! You can see the beautiful fountain at the center, surrounded beautifully by a beautifully manicured, beautiful garden! Roma is famous for these beautiful courtyards with all their green beauty. It’s just a shame that none of the Romans, with their beautiful green thumbs, seemed to have time to enjoy how beautiful this courtyard was as it was completely empty, but beautifully so. I was just lucky enough to be given the opportunity to have exclusive access to this beautiful courtyard and enjoy capturing (hmmm, now that’s interesting “capture”) all the beauty of this courtyard.
Photography, my love, you will remain in Roma as I journey forth. And yet, you will come with me too. Isn’t there magic in your modern ability to be omnipresent? Isn’t there something intriguing in your overwhelming, all encompassing presence? Nothing happens without you, even in the most private of rooms. It’s hard to imagine a time before you. It’s hard to imagine anything happening without you.
This is Tony “Ya Dead” Ferrarese. That’s more or less all I know about him (and I gave him that nickname because of what I heard him saying). After taking this picture, I approached the stairs to speak with him, kind of like a casual interview. Who was this Italian native?
As I approached, a couple of smartly dressed men stepped in front of me. They simply shook their heads.
I said, “I just want to go speak with–”
“Tony Ferrerese,” one of them grunted.
“Yeah, him,” I cool and casually breezed.
Tony had not moved from his pose seen in the photo. As I tried to approach again, a smaller fella with short curly hair sauntered into the scene. He spoke English well.
“Eh, why-a you wanna see Tony? Can’t-a you see he a-reading his Bible? Why you wanna interrupt (pause) a man a-reading his Bible?” Then he casually moved his jacket and accidentally, it seemed, revealed a gun (a shooter).
I immediately started backing away, bowing (for some reason).
“I… I didn’t know he was reading. How rude of me! I’m a-sorry!” (Yes, I had suddenly adopted a very convincing Italian accent.)
As I ran down a nearby alleyway, I thought, what wonderful stories must Mr. Ferrarese must have. What I could’ve learned from a modern day Solomon.
Let that kid up here and ya dead.
– Tony “Ya Dead” Ferrarese
Aba Akachi (interestingly “Aba” comes up first when you Google “African Names”… don’t ask me how I know that) travels 3 miles through the claustrophobic roads of Roma 3 times a week to meet here with Nona Bocchino. She comes to sit and speak with Nona, who she met years ago when she married Nona’s son (who subsequently divorced her and moved to Turkey).
But still, Aba comes and feeds Nona her favourite Gelato (Italian for ice-cream, but supposedly healthier). What makes this journey all the more courageous and kind is that Aba (pause for dramatic effect) is blind. Her lack of sight, will not keep her from tending to this elderly woman who, according to Aba, will outlive all of us. I find that hard to believe because I’m very youthful.
After cheating death on the tri-mile trek (somehow not being hit by countless, recklessly driven scooters and baby cars, which is all they drive over there), the couple sit back for a chat and a delicious, milky, icy treat. Not cream, milk. That’s why it’s healthier. Of course, Aba, in her blindness, has the unfortunate habit of missing Nona’s mouth quite frequently.
As I watched and listened, it was obvious that Aba was insisting that Nona continue to talk so she could find her mouth, but then would stop her from talking by shoving a spoonful of Gelato in there. It appeared obviously frustrating, maybe even infuriating on Nona’s part, but there was love there too.
For a woman to travel thrice weekly to torture an old lady and that old lady to put up with that torture with grace each time, there is no better example of family as in front of this little Gelato shop in Rome, Italy.
Does anyone know where this Pantheon is? I mean, I know it’s in Rome, but where abouts?
I added a Contact Page on the site for any companies wanting to pay me to travel and then photograph places and then do blogs about it.