After the Vatican, it’s a long way home

The metro took us to Piazza del Popolo. Shelly’s list included a bunch of restaurants my mom gave us. Naturally, we couldn’t find any of them. And the deli she told us about was back by the Vatican. No way. We settled on a place that had a bunch of salads on the menu – right across the street from a window of doll heads. Perfect.

Doll heads in a window. No caption needed.

Doll heads in a window. No caption needed.

After our late, salad lunch, we took off toward the Spanish steps, popped into a couple of shoe stores and headed home. Or at least, that’s what Shelly told me. We crossed a bridge where she proudly spoke of her Girl Scout skills.

The only problem was that she took us in the wrong direction, back toward the Vatican. Yes, we crossed a bridge, but the wrong bridge. We walked for what seemed like days. Hours at the very least. Around busy streets and not so busy streets. By an Italian film crew. Shelly asked, but they didn’t speak English. By rows of Vespas and Smart Cars. I finally had to summon up my Brownie skills, point out the Vatican wall, and lead us to civilization. By now, we were pretty much laughing uncontrollably at nothing, but I hadn’t seen a mirage, so we knew we were safe. We hoped a bus back to our neighborhood, ate pizza from down the street, and called it a night. Well, first we couldn’t pass up the Gypsy fortune teller with three parakeets (one bad boy was called Antonio). She had the parakeets “pick” out a fortune in English or Italian. According to the parakeets, I will live until I’m 98. Shelly, until she’s 95. Maybe both of us will be fortune tellers.

Fortune-telling parakeets. Antonio is in the front.

Fortune-telling parakeets. Antonio is in the front.

We also stopped in at the Santa Maria church. A bit dark inside at night, made even darker with spooky organ music played by Vincent Price according to Shelly.

By the time we made it back to our apartment, we were grateful that we could still feel our toes.

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