I need some readjustments though. Today I went to Starbucks and I confidently ordered a coffee à emporter — the face of the nice lady behind the bar was priceless.
I used to think Amsterdam was the most inconvenient city to visit, Paris was the other possibility. I was absolutely wrong. If you really want to have an annoying time, go to Rome: there you will find real hordes of tourists moving all over the city hypnotized by the ruins. You will enjoy queues everywhere, from the very first moment you (try to) leave the airport.
To cross the street –in a crosswalk– you have to look at the Vatican, pray strongly, and step forward with the conviction of Harrison Ford in The Last Crusade. That’s why the tourists usually wait to be a decent bunch of them to cross, because of the protection of the group, otherwise chances are you get hit by a crazy Vespino or a Mini during the attempt (bad luck for them). Buses and taxis are more dangerous.
I don’t know, I came here like ten years ago for the first time and everything seems to be pretty much stuck. I start to think they were right when they said Spain had surpassed Italy. Mostly everything is overrated, although it doesn’t necessarily mean things are expensive (at least the coffee). They wildly try to cheat you, and to sell you the most ridiculous objects you can imagine, but it’s not their fault, it’s ours. When tourists arrive to Rome learn they have to through money away in la Fontana di Trevi… but someone has to tell them they should stop doing that there. We have a misunderstanding here.
But the weather is nice, ragazzas are beautiful, and coffee is tasty. (*)
My advice: ask someone who knows the city for a nice neighborhood, look there for a good cafeteria and relax. Of course you have to see things, but plan ahead, and take your time.
OK, now it’s time to work.
(*) Summary of Italy by an Italian taxi driver — all rights reserved.