Lani – Kona, Hawaii
(30 August – 01 October, 2013)
Aloha everyone, I just got back, two weeks ago, from my trip to 7 countries. I visited:
1. Italy (Rome, Treviso, Venice, Trieste)
2. Hungary (Budapest and around)
3. Slovenia (Metlika, Bled, Ljubljana and around)
4. Croatia (Zagreb and around)
5. Bosnia (Bihac)
6. The Netherlands (Amsterdam, Den Haag, Delft, Leiden, Rotterdam)
7. France (Montpellier and around, Paris)
Italy (Rome, August 31-September 3)
I flew out of San Francisco with Lufthansa to Rome. I met an Italian lady when I was at the boarding room in Frankfurt airport, she sat down next to me, and I started a conversation. Turns out, we were going to the same place so we traveled together till Termini train station. Her name is Angela and she was my angel.
From the airport taking train going to Termini station, then taking a taxi to get to my place where I’m staying in a guest house of my Indonesian catholic priest friend. It’s actually in the center of attraction in Rome.
In Rome, I stayed with a friend of mine, an Indonesian Catholic priest. He lives in the center of Rome in an old 3 stories building. In Rome, it seems like everything is old and dates back to the Roman Empire.
2. This picture was taken in front of the building where I stayed in Rome
Many Catholic priests are living in this building; they come from different continents such as Africa, Asia, North America, and Europe.
There’s a church attached to the main building. Although it’s open to the public, hardly any one comes to church for mass. Usually mass is in the morning, but it seems like a private mass because only 7 priests attend.
This church is much more famous for weddings. Usually there are 2-3 weddings on the weekend.
3. A week before I went on my trip, I met an Italian guy on the internet. He works for Italian Public Television in Rome. He gave me such important info. Thank you, Paolo. You’re great!
I stayed for 4 days in Rome, sightseeing every day from the morning to evening.
4 & 5 Soon after I had arrived in Rome, I was lucky enough to hear the concert of BMS
The traffic in Rome is crazy, crowded and busy day and night. Italians are fun people; loud, energetic, full of enthusiasm. They like to move their hands when they talk, especially in person or on the phone.
6. “Basilica Saint Peter church”
7. In front of Basilica Saint Peter church
8. I was happy to see the Pope Francis, on that Sunday morning even from the distance. I saw him on the big screen TV.
9 & 10 Piazza Venetia. Altare de la patria (national monument for the unknown heroes). It’s gigantic, indeed amazing
11 & 12 In front of the ruins of the famous Coliseum
13 & 14 Fontana di Trevi
15. We visited night market along the Tiber River and I spotted this banner. We laughed, we thought it was so funny.
16. The famous sculpture Pieta from Michael Angelo. For security reason, they put the Pieta inside bullet proof glass. I don’t how to describe it in words, but indeed it’s gorgeous art, and I’m fortunate to have seen it in person.
17. One of among altars inside Basilica Saint Peter
19. This is an amazing dome, inside the Basilica of Saint Peter church
I love the food in Italy. It is nice to finally taste real/genuine Italian food. It’s so much more delicious than the Italian food we have in America. There are a thousand kind of pasta (style, color, and ingredient), the pizza is so delicious with its thin crust, the coffee is amazing, the bakery is wonderful. I can’t describe it in words so you should try it yourself!
20. This is a real pizza, made in Italy. It’s delicious
I met a mother and a daughter from the Netherlands, when I had dinner in Rome. It’s nice to have a chat with them, at the end of the evening, we exchanged email addresses. Her daughter is going to Jakarta to study for about 6 months. I visited many places, including Saint Peter church in Vatican City. It’s an enormous church.
I ended up visiting Vatican City twice, once on Sunday when the Pope was giving a speech and blessing. He appeared in one of the building’s window, addressing all the people down in the Saint Peter square. We couldn’t see clearly because he was too high and far away, but they put up a very big screen TV, so everybody can see him.
To be continued…