Nom de Plumage

August 14, 2012

Villa Borghese – A Jewel That Gives Versailles a Run For Its Splendour


 

All by myself again……………

As ever, loneliness can dampen the spirits and it is in these times, that walking can offer some respite.

I really had no set plan for the day and just wanted to get lost in Rome. I love to walk and with the sun making a rare appearance, I glorified in the opportunity of staying dry and having my bones thaw a little.

               

My memory is shocking in relating names of places and for obvious reasons, in that I discovered an affluent suburb of stunning boulevards, villa’s and restaurants and cannot relate the name. Sorry! But it was beautiful and it reminded me so much of a misplaced street in Paris, neatly re-allocated in Rome. And it was here, walking through a massive foliage rich garden, that I discovered a true gem.

When you think grandeur and royalty, you think Versailles. Having seen the French monstrosity, I believed nothing could compare. Wrong! Villa Borghese is much smaller than Versailles and built by the other type of royalty that only the Romans know and that is the Catholic Church. A woman of power and the mistress of social elite, oh, and it helps to have your brother as the Pope, she created something truly magnificent. The villa is dominated by marble, marble and more marble. Perfect white statues of stone and stunning frescoes that decorate each room, one cannot help but ogle  the stunning beauty and acknowledge her taste in all things magnificent. I loved every minute that I spent there and each turn brought new delights and bigger gasps. As always, no photos allowed, but if you ever get the chance, please make the effort to visit this little beauty.

               

 

And so I kept walking……….

I had the very best of intentions in finding Rome’s Olympic Park; by foot that is; but I underestimated the size of Rome and mother nature. I crossed the Tiber River and continued walking. You remember how I mentioned first up about blue sky and thawing my bones? Yeap! For each step that took me closer to the park, the sky kept getting darker and the temperature plummeted. I made it as far as the major traffic intersection and before the ascent to the park’s entrance. Here I stopped. I just knew that all hell was about to break loose and so I turned and made my way to the nearest bus stop. Just as I stepped onto the bus, it began to pour. The day was over. Wet and cold, I made my way back to my hostel to thaw and catch up on some reading time.

 

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