"I am a woman in process. I'm just trying like everybody else. I try to take every conflict, every experience,and learn from it.
Life is never dull." ~ Oprah

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


Tuesday:  I awoke to my wake up call at 0615 in order to make breakfast and meet for my excursion at 0730.  Once going through the mass exit process, I jumped on my assigned bus, found a seat, and we headed to Rome from the port in Civitavecchia.  The drive was about an hour and half - a nice way to enjoy the countryside.  The guide was pleasant, and gave interesting information on the area. 

walls of Vatican City
As we arrived in Rome, we tested our tour listening devices, then hopped off the bus at the Vatican. The Vatican is considered a city, by itself, and is surrounded by stone walls.  We walked on the outside of those walls until we reached one of the entrances.  The Vatican is made up of many different museums, only which we toured through about 5 of them, I think.  I saw SO many extraordinary things - everything from stone sculptures, to wall-size tapestries.  My favorite part of the whole tour was the Sistine Chapel.  It was immensely powerful sitting on the antique wooden bench, where thousands had sat before me, and look up and around me to see such ancient and lovely art.  It’s all painted, yet every piece had such depth!  I felt such emotion being in that atmosphere for that short period of time, and honor to have the opportunity to be there.  Unfortunately, no one is allowed to take pictures or video; complete silence is also instructed, although people were whispering to each other, so the more people, the more whispering, the louder it got.  The sound vibrations are known to damage the art, so the guards would “shhhhhh” the crowd and/or say “silence.”  They are serious and frequently escort people out for picture taking or loud chatting.

St. Peter’s Basilica is intense!  A very spiritual place even if I don’t consider myself Catholic and/or Christian.  So much look at - all according to tradition.  When you look at the pictures, be sure to notice the size of the people in relation to the size of everything around them.  Fascinating!  Not to mention, St. Peter’s square, which is incredible from every vantage point.

St. Peter's Basilica from the Square
St. Peter's Basilica

Lunch was next on the list.  And for that we got back on the bus for a short drive to the restaurant.  We were served Ziti pasta, salad, potatoes, and teramisu (my absolute favorite dessert).  I sat with two men traveling together from Panama City.  One of them spoke English; both of them were very kind and enjoyable. 

On to the Colosseum!  How crazy it was to be standing face to face with those walls.  I wish I would have been able to take a tour of the inside, but one of the pitfalls of taking an excursion is staying on “the schedule” and we only had 25-30 minutes to walk around the area.  I went all the way around, peeked inside, and kept thinking to myself “I’m walking where the Legends have walked, I’m here where the legends took place.”  What a deep sense of amazement....There are no doubts in my mind that I want to come back to Italy and venture out more! 

Arch of Constantine

strawberry gelato!  YUM  ;)

I think I took a little nap on the way back to the port.  I’ve been taking short naps whenever possible - nothing over 30 minutes, but I keep wishing for a 2 or 3 hour one.

After getting back on board, I went straight to the Thermal Suite for an hour.  The jacuzzi treated me very well after walking and being on a bus all day.  Dinner was at Alizar restaurant and early in my 4-course meal, I was invited to join the family of the couple whom I want to go to Delphi on Thursday.  They were all very nice and it was a lot of fun getting to know them over dinner!

Stromboli Island

Wednesday:  We had to set our clocks forward last night, so now I’m 8 hours ahead CST.  This morning I got up at 8:15 so I could make it out to the Starboard side to see Stromboli Island where one of the three active volcanoes in Italy was visible.  It’s strange to think that it’s “active” because there is a village at the bottom, on the coast.  I wonder how it is to live there and what the danger poses the locals.

I headed to yoga at 9am; I would have rather stayed in bed this morning!  At 10am I had a manicure, where luckily, I was able to enjoy passing through the Strait of Messina and seeing Sicily out the window.  The manicure was wonderful and included a hand/arm stone massage with both fire and ice oils, plus a paraffin treatment that was luxurious.  Of course, I wanted it to last longer  =)


From 1pm to 3pm I attended an Art Auction.  They had pieces from Picasso, Rembrandt, and other “master” (or near-master) artists.  It was interesting to see what people would bid on and for what prices.  I got 8 tickets into the raffle and won TWICE.  There were 10 prizes given, both of mine happened to be certificates for a “large format work of art - choose from 7.”  Maybe I can get a set, of some sort.

After dinner I want to go to the Funk-a-delic 70’s disco tonight at 2230, but I’m not feelin’ it right now  :(

It’s DAY 3 of my cruise and  I’m pretty exhausted, people are starting to get on my nerves.  I know a good, long, night’s rest will do wonders for me!  I have worked on relaxing some in the Thermal Suite and am about to get into the steam room and therapy whirlpool. It’s 1825 and the ship’s position is 37 10.72 N / 18 40.16 E - we are going 21.8  knots at a heading of 104 degrees.  The sea conditions have generally been mild, but there have been occasions where it became evident that the sea was rougher - especially when the  extra hangers in my closet are swinging into each other.

Come to find out, I won’t be going to Delphi.  I would have had to cancel the excursion I booked by 1030 yesterday morning - BEFORE I met the sweet elderly couple who offered to let me tag along with them and their granddaughter.  Oh Well!  Maybe I’ll come back to Greece one day, too.  Dinner tonight was very nice.  I shared a table with four other ladies; two were from Texas and the other two (I’d met earlier in the cruise) are from eastern Canada.  We had a fun chat about all kinds of things & I hope to meet up with the Canadian ladies for our Egyptian adventure   =)  

We’ll arrive in Piraeus at 1030 in the morning. Athens, Greece....here I come!!!

*hugs & love*

See my Pictures of Rome - click HERE
The Barcelona and Norwegian Jade albums are also updated - so check them out, too.

*** if you don't see any new albums/pics, just know that satellite internet is slow - please check back***

No comments:

Post a Comment