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Residents of Roma

28 May

28 May 2012. Where to start?

  • We live in one of the greatest cities in the world!
  • I walk to work through the Villa Borghese
  • Our neighborhood is charming
  • Our apartment is tiny but lovely

Entrance to our apartment building. Well maintained, classic, probably 100 years old. New by Roman standards.

We spent our first weekend, before reporting to work, wandering the neighborhood and starting to fill in the pantry and frig. It’s quite daunting to have no food at all and have to start from scratch. Quadruple the feeling with feet as primary transportation. There are three groceries within an 8 to 10 minute walk, so good selection. There are also a butcher, salumeria, pasticceria, and an enoteca. Plus countless shops for clothing and household goods/hardware (the latter called a ferramenta). I love the ferramente. They have an assortment from batteries to hammers, flower pots to alarm clocks, cooking pots to aprons. Organization seems non-existent, but the proprietor knows where everysingle item is.

Most peaceful part of my commute: through the Villa Borghese.

The walk to work is 45-50 minutes each way depending on route and traffic signals, so daily exercise is built into the commute. Part of it is through the lovely Villa Borghese, right past the Galleria Borghese. Shopping is a daily occurrence, picking up fresh items but also stocking the house. We struggle with our limited Italian, but the shopkeepers are very patient and accommodating. The local pet store owner has deemed us amiche already and gives us the resident discount. In fact, since we have the revered codice fiscale, we are entitled to discounts mere travelers are not. Today we purchased a Nespresso espresso maker (think Italian Keurig) and qualified for 50€ worth of coffee pods because we are residents. Only 10 days on-the-ground and we are “residents.” É fantastico! 

There’s a huge Carabinieri installation in Parioli. Makes for a safe neighborhood.

The Parioli neighborhood is quite nice and peaceful (for Rome). Our neighbors vary greatly from the Carabinieri to La Chiesa di San Luigi Gonzaga. (Also many many apartment buildings. Many.) “SLG” has a soccer court, and while you might think that noisy and annoying, Rome is noisy and sometimes annoyingly so. The early-evening practice and play of good kids under adult supervision makes for a nice backdrop. Frankly it’s better than the wild jungle-bird noises we sometimes hear at 3AM. The first night we heard a racket of bird noises we dubbed “jungle noises,” and now we think there is one particular species that makes the racket. Like nothing we’ve ever heard before. Louder than a peacock, and more irritating than a seagull (although we have those too). But after 10 nights, it barely registers.

“SLG”: Churches make good neighbors.

Around many corners, another piece of history. The walk to work will never be boring.

Loving the small apartment, although we’d love it better with our furniture. That’s still 4-6 weeks a way, I would guess, since it is coming via container ship. We have an amazing variety of keys, some of which are keys to nowhere, and there are also “wheres” to which we have no keys. Explored the rooftop today with our portiere, Emilio, and found there is grand vista across Rome to St. Peter’s Basilica and also of the mountains to the east. Allora we don’t have the keys to the roof! Nor do we have a key for our mailbox, which is troubling. A problem to be solved tomorrow, when I go back to work and talk to housing. Piano piano  as they say in Italian. Slowly slowly we will get there.

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13 Responses to “Residents of Roma”

  1. Julie May 29, 2012 at 18:34 #

    You’re such a good writer, you make me think I should stop calling myself one! I’m very much enjoying your accounts of your Rome experience.

    Like

    • gooddayrome May 29, 2012 at 19:40 #

      Thanks Julie! Coming from you that is a huge compliment!

      Like

  2. Kim May 29, 2012 at 17:32 #

    What a wonderful experience and I love the photos. They truly tell a story. Neat coffee machine!

    Like

  3. Gina May 29, 2012 at 10:38 #

    I see you have the most important things set up in your apt. Wine and coffee. 🙂 Love hearing about your adventures, cousins!

    Like

    • gooddayrome May 29, 2012 at 19:42 #

      You caught the “subtlety” in that photo! Just add water and we have all the beverages we need for tehe day.

      Like

  4. John Bravenec May 28, 2012 at 22:10 #

    Very cool! BTW, I’m old-school (is that even possible on the internet?) and am subscribed via RSS feed. So we’re keeping track of you from Seattle, but in stealth mode 😉

    Like

    • gooddayrome May 29, 2012 at 20:00 #

      Glad to have you “lurking” no matter the method!

      Like

  5. Terah May 28, 2012 at 21:31 #

    What a photographer you are! I’m there with you! I knew there had to be a discount for those that live there. Things were just unthinkably expensive but it keeps me from bringing things home! I don’t really need anything so it’s nice to keep my pocketbook closed! An hour to work and walking? You’ll be so fit when you return! Love that you are having such fun. You deserve and I look forward to each post!

    Like

  6. gayleseely May 28, 2012 at 18:45 #

    Laurel:
    I loved every detail. I can almost feel the air on my face – what a treat to have to walk through Villa Borghese! I wrote a much longer comment but somehow lost it. Anyway
    this is magical and THANK YOU for posting.

    Gayle

    Like

  7. Mary Henry May 28, 2012 at 18:15 #

    Laurel,

    How truly magical. Miss you, Mary Henry

    Like

  8. Diana May 28, 2012 at 17:03 #

    I’m loving your adventure. How is Rick’s Italian? He starting to pick up some words? With no furniture, are you sleeping on the floor or did they have something for you until everything arrives?

    We did the NW thing yesteray, hiked Dog Mountain 2800 elavation in 3 miles with 20 mile an hour gust of wind. It didn’t rain on us and the flowers were beautiful so a good day. Not Rome, but a good day.

    Like

    • gooddayrome May 29, 2012 at 19:48 #

      Oh we have a temp setup: very basic IKEA. Ric’s doing well with a mixture of language. He does almost all of the shopping daily.

      Nice hike! Ours are a bit more urban right now!

      Like

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