Oh là là, Tarantula!

This weekend my cousin Klaus came for a blitz-visit! He arrived late on Thursday and left early on Sunday – which means we had only two days to jam in the most of Rome we could. And we did!

On Friday we had a walk at the beach at Ostia and Aperol with a view of the seaside, took beach selfies and on the way back had Pasta at Eataly. We walked around Circo Massimo to the Colosseo, had ice cream and Aperitivo in the sunshine and finally went out for drinks with a view of the Colosseo (and met some interesting French guys! XD).

Saturday was the “let’s see all the important sights”-day. After a proper Roman breakfast with Maritozzi (brioche buns filled to the brim with whipped cream) and Tramezzini we took the bus to the centre and started our tour: being young and fit we managed to walk all the way from the Vatican to Castel Sant Angelo, Piazza Navona, the Pantheon, on to the Trevi Fountain (where we tossed a coin, of course!) and the Spanish Steps, where we finally sat down for a coffee and consulted the guide book for all the sights we saw and just briefly stopped to take a picture before heading to the next one – that’s time efficient tourism! 😉 To end our little marathon we went to see the “Secret of Rome”, which apparently is not so secret any more, as there was a queue of people and a souvenir stand. So we skipped it. But we were just in time to see the sunset form the Orangery at the Aventine Hill, which is an absolutely fantastic view!

Klausi_Collage.jpg

Oh, and if you are wondering about the “Tarantula” in the title: On Thursday nigh, after picking up my cousin at Termini station and getting some pizza, we came home and my flatmate welcomed us with the news that she saw a big tarantula in the back of the kitchen.  😱
After the first panic faded away and Klaus’ face got some of it’s original colour back, we elaborated the subject a little more and it turned out that said “spider” had only four legs… and that Graziella confused our little house-lizard (we named him Lucio) with a massive spider.

Benvenuto in Italia, Klaus … and by the way, in summer there are scorpions too.

Thanks for the visit, the gossip, the memories, ice cream and post cards! Come back soon!

XX, Angie

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San Juan bonfire in Hounslow East

One of the perks of working in a multi-lingual translation company is definitely getting to know customs of many different cultures and countries – and making friends and learning swearwords in a lot of different languages! 😉

SJCollage.jpgAnd I learned recently that a Spanish tradition to celebrate midsummer is to light bonfires – preferably on the beach, but if you don’t have any, a terrace is perfectly fine – in the night of San Juan (Saint John).
Being a bit liberal with the tradition, Diego moved the celebration from the 23rd of June (which was a Thursday) to the 24th (a Friday, obvs. 😉 ) and invited us all to his house for a big barbecue.
After a massive dinner, the guys moved the grill aside and strategically started to build a little bonfire on the terrace.
I was explained that you have to prepare two little papers to throw into the fire: one with your wishes for the year to come and one with things you want to get rid of. After burning your papers you have to jump over the fire – to make the magic work.

I can only imagine, that it must be quite an enchanting sight to see a beach in Spain full of huge bonfires and people celebrating the beginning of summer – but in the meantime a small fire and a bunch of friends in Hounslow East are a very good substitute!

XX, Angie