Living with intent, social engagement, learning, growing, giving
We had 10 wonderful days staying in Anzio, Italy in June this year. One day we caught the train to Rome so that we could explore a little of that legendary city. I had only visited Rome for one day in 2003 and our children hadn’t been there before.
We decided to walk from the central railway station to Trevi fountain. To keep our 8 year old son engaged on the long walk in the hot sun I handed him the map and asked him to navigate for us. He loved the task and successfully took us directly to the fountain.
There were many tourists at the fountain but less than we expected. It was a good idea to go on a week day and in June when it’s not yet peek tourist season. We slipped past the tourists posing for selfies while they tossed a coin into the fountain. I explained to our children that legend says that they will return to Rome someday if they toss a coin into the fountain. It says something about how travel weary they are after living in Norway for two years and travelling internationally on every school holidays and for some long weekends too because both of them stated emphatically that they don’t want to return to Rome. None of us tossed in a coin. I did dip my fingers into the cool water and contemplated what Roman friends had told us earlier that week about one cold day last winter when the fountain froze over and Romans slid across the icy surface.
We walked on to the Spanish Steps and tried to find something remarkable about them then gave up and walked up them towards the gardens of Villa Borghese.
We stopped in the park and ate our picnic lunch of delicious panini that we had bought the evening before in Anzio.
We had pre-booked tickets for the 1pm entrance to the art gallery in Galleria Borghese so we hurried through the park and into the museum.
It helped immensely to keep our children’s interest that they have just avidly consumed the Percy Jackson series of books and have much more intricate knowledge of Greek mythology than we do. They recognised the stories they have read about and knew the Roman names of some of the Gods too.
The highlights of Galleria Borghese for art lovers are the Caravaggio paintings. For me it was the sculptures.
As we walked around I realised that the art inspired by the legends of the Roman gods commonly depicted rape of young women. I found this discomforting and I was glad that my children didn’t pick up on it.
We only stayed at the museum for one hour then headed back to the railway station and home to Anzio for great gelati. It was a good day trip and we were all glad that we stayed in Anzio and not Rome itself.