I've been missing-in-action and I'll bet this photo gives you all the hint you'll need to guess where I've been. Yes, it is The Coliseum. In Rome. In Italy.
Did you know that over 1 MILLION gladiators (prisoners of war who were forced to fight each other for entertainment) died in this enormous stadium? Not to mention the Christians, the prisoners and the animals that were also slaughtered for the amusement of blood-thirsty crowds. There was actually an elaborate system to drain the blood from underneath the flooring! Ingenious actually, but... Yuk!
Yeah, let's change the subject.
Just outside the Coliseum, you can see this contrastingly peaceful scene. Rome's beauty is beyond adequate description... at least by my meager skills. Grace, symmetry, order, and timelessness exist in any direction you gaze.
The level of artistry, skill, craftsmanship, and perfection... all achieved with manual tools, is nothing short of miraculous in my books.
Can you see the rays of sunshine? They mesmerized me as they flowed into the domes of St. Peter's.
Touring the Vatican, the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter's was my favorite part of the trip. I had always wanted to see the Sistine Chapel... and, it did not disappoint. I was a little sad you were not allowed to take photos, but definitely respectful of their wishes.
On that subject, I also have to admit that one of the most disdainful, infuriating and embarrassing things of this trip was seeing an American woman taking photos in the Academia Gallery (not allowed) and then hearing her gloat to her friends that that was the third time she had been "caught" by the docents. I deplore that kind of behavior. People who think the rules don't apply to them, that some how they are special, I find extremely disrespectful and I have no respect for them. Pardon my rant, but it still gets my blood boiling to think about that woman. And, I hate that she is an American. Hate it! If I could have disowned her and thrown her out for the rest of us who believe in being respectful of other people and other countries, I would have. Oh, I would have... still would.
Okay, I'm getting off that subject, too.
Back to the beauty... Ladies out there who may quilt, let me tell you that the floors to the Sistine Chapel had every beautiful pattern imaginable... hand cut and made of tiny pieces of stone and marble intricately laid! I could have just studied the floor for hours! And, Michelangelo's frescoes on the ceiling and front wall.... oh, my... oh, my. I suppose it was just as well that I couldn't take photos in there... I can never really capture the full effect.
Well, I have to hit the sack. It has been a really long day trying to play catch up following a really long day of traveling home.
I look forward to having some time tomorrow to visit. It was fun to go... but, I do love being back home!
Blessings ~ tanna