The first and only time that I have ever seen the Lizzie McGuire movie was during pre-departure classes. And yet, inevitably, this is what everyone else my age first thinks of when they think about going to Rome, Italy and making wishes in the Trevi Fountain. They all want to find that cute singer dude and ride around on a moped. That’s even what Audrey does, honestly, in a movie that I appreciate much more (and have watched much more often) than the former. And yet…I Rome still isn’t my jam.
I hated it when I visited in tenth grade. It was the end of our week and a half long trip. It was hot. We were all exhausted. And people came up to us and badgered us outside of the Colosseum, where we all sat down on giant rocks while our tour guide was pestering us with her way-to-chipper voice. We all wanted naps. And we all low-key were ready to go home.
Fast-forward four years, and you still have me, exhausted again, avoiding the Colosseum like the frikkin plague. I think I did just about everything that I could that didn’t involve the Colosseum, and yet still I found myself there at one point. It was like a weird magnet that the entire city somehow revolved around. Ok, not just the Colosseum, but each of the tourist traps. The Spanish Steps, the Parthenon… Seeing these landmarks, eating, walking, shopping… This was all there was to do. So we did.
It wasn’t all bad though. In fact, we found some pretty fun and memorable ways to occupy our time. We did a day of intentionally touristy things, calling it our Roman Holiday. We found various sites from the movie. We ate lots of pizza and gelato and went to see free art. Did you know that there is an entire modern art gallery in the basement of the Vatican? Me neither, and there was an entire room devoted to Matisse. I hate Zara now, and I really and truly still despise the Vatican and the Colesseum. And don’t get me started on their public transportation. But we enjoyed the time we spent there and with one another nonetheless.