imageRoman Forum… Piazza Popolo… Monument Victor Emmanuel image Our charming neighborhood in Roma is three small streets away from Piazza Navonna. The location is perfect. We can easily walk to all major monuments but are tucked away from the hustle and noise of the large Piazza. imageBERNINI: Daphne and Apollo

We had the most amazing and spiritual experiences today being in St Peters Square for the Wednesday Blessing of the Pope. While the crowd of 50,000 did not make the experience intimate , it was non-the-less, exciting and moved my soul. I reflected with tears on the memories of my parents who would have loved knowing I was in the audience of the POPE.


Stairwell in the Vatican Museum


Borghese Gallery

Borghese Gallery
Today was the final day of our Italian Tour.
We ended the visit with another visual and historical tour of great opulence: the Borghese Gallery.

The assemblage of artworks in this museum was collected by the powerful and wealthy Cardinal Scipione (in the early 1600’s) who was a fanatic about adding masterpieces to his collection. History recounts that he often used very ” unholy” and illegal means in his attempt to amass this art collection. As a result, some of the world’s greatest treasures are housed here. Among my favorites are the sculptures of Bernini : Apollo & Dafne, Pluto & Proserpina; and the paintings of Caravaggio : Madonna de Palafrenieri & Boy with Basket of Fruit. These works are all breathtaking. The Gallery is surrounded by beautiful gardens which afforded us a pleasant stroll as we said our good-byes to Italy.
We decided to console ourselves with one last gelato……….

We thank you for following our journey………Un Abbraccio, a hug, e Ciao Ciao,

Anahid and Maleka

September 23, 2011

our last gelato

our last gelato

Vatican Vatican Vatican

Vatican Vatican
Today we visited the Vatican. I do not think I can put into words the kind of artistic Splendor we witnessed in this sacred place. We visited the Vatican Museum where we saw Raffaello fresco’s in the Borgia appartamento which then lead us into the Sistine Chapel where Michelangelo’s ceiling masterpiece startled our senses, leaving us in an awestruck state. We left the Chapel and proceeded to St Peter’s Basilica in the core of the Vatican. Catholics who wish to attend Mass are allowed to proceed to the front altar of the Basilica while other visitors are kept in the back of church until Mass is completed. Being a Catholic while visiting Rome does make one feel like a privileged first class citizen. We attended the mass which included a male vocalist who had the beautiful voice of an opera singer. Experiencing the Mass in the world’s most Magnificent Church triggered strong emotions. I reflected on my Parents who would love knowing that we were visiting the Vatican. The reverberating spirituality of my surrounds made me certain that they know. With a warm heart I sign off today…….Ciao, Pace and Peace. Anahid

Raffaelo frescos Vatican Museum



There are fountains and there are other fountains……but there is nothing like Rome’s Trevi Fountain. The Trevi sits in a tiny piazza and commands an enormous presence. The base of the fountain is natural stone forms and then in a convergence of water and stone, enormous horses and figures jettison out of the rock with incredible strength power and beauty!!!!! Bellissimo!!!!! It is a visual masterpiece in every dimension.
We crossed the Tivere River and had lunch at a charming Trattoria called Gli Amici. The restaurant is part of the Community of Sant Egidio which is a group that has pledged to spread peace in this world thru friendship. Many of the restaurant staff have handicaps and thus are paired with a ” friend” who helps them manage their work. Our meal was delicious, the service excellent, and it warmed our hearts seeing Christ’s message of peace which is artistically expressed in the thousands of artistic images everywhere in Roma, here in this little piazza, being practiced in real life. If you are interested in learning more about this community their web site is Ciao i miei amici, Anahid

OstiaOstia Antica20110920-033731.jpgSea
Yesterday our first day in Roma involved touring the usual tourist spectacular sites including the Colosseum, The Roman Forum, Monument to Victor Emmanuel, Church of Santa Marie Maggiore etc.etc. So, today we needed a break from city life and we took an excursion outside of Rome to the city of Ostia Antica where ruins from 500 BC stand. The ruins of this ancient port city can be walked thru and the sophistication of this civilization can be observed and respected. The community had beautiful theaters, baths with hot and cold water all decorated in intricate mosaics which remain today and we as tourists were able to stroll across. Truly amazing that this has all survived….the photos tell the story.
After Ostia we continued on the to the tiny sea side town of Stella Polare where we walked the beach and enjoyed a few hours on the Tyrrhenian Sea.