Jun 10, 2019
WRITTEN BY EMILY WALSH
Ohio Volleyball says "ciao" all the way from Rome, Italy!
Rome has been an awesome first stop of our long-awaited European trip. Thus far, we have experienced so many breathtaking sights, a new and vibrant culture, precious moments with our fellow travelers, along with all of the pizza and gelato one can imagine!
Upon arrival at the Leonardo da Vinci International Airport, we headed straight to our hotel on the outskirts of Rome, Hotel Rome Pisana. We briefly got situated and hit the streets of Rome running. Our first stop at Piccolo Spazio, a traditional and picturesque Italian restaurant, far exceeded our expectations. We had been warned in advance that in Italy the courses of each meal keep on coming, however, we learned quickly that they ACTUALLY keep on coming. The bread, caprese, and gnocchi were among the favorites of this meal. After lunch we headed across town to the Colosseum via the metro. We spent some time wandering around the massive arena, and each angle of observation took our attention to different unique features- the smooth stones, defined arches, and breath taking views of its surrounding area. We then hiked across the street to the Roman Forum. We leisurely roamed the campus, enamored by the intricate beauty, rich history, and unifying nature of the various elements. Later that night, we visited the Trevi Fountain. We were able to enjoy some free time in the area, shopping at the many little stores and trying our first gelato of the trip. We then headed to dinner at Bottega Rocchi where we enjoyed two different pizzas followed by chicken, mashed potatoes, and tiramisu.
On day two of the excursion, we walked through the streets of Rome checking off a visit to the Spanish steps, window shopping, seeing the Pantheon, and picking up a quick pizza and gelato lunch on the way to the Vatican. Many of us were overwhelmed by the beauty of the art museums and Sistine Chapel, and it was special to know that Pope Francis was in our presence because he was holding mass at Saint Paul's Cathedral in only a couple hours. Later that evening we played in our first match of the trip. The White team played against Frascatti, the Green team played Roma 7, and both left victorious. It was exciting to see both of our teams quickly adjust after set one to an extremely ball-control based, European style volleyball. Although free of air conditioning, it was a special opportunity to be welcomed into their gym. After the matches, we walked to dinner nearby at a restaurant called Relax where we thoroughly enjoyed specifically the lasagna, chicken, and macchiatos. After such a busy day we headed back to the hotel and prepared to progress on our journey to Pordenone the next morning.
We want to say "grazie" to everyone following along with us on our special journey! We are loving every moment!