The last flight, from Munich to Rome, occurred rather uneventfully so I'll skip ahead to landing in Rome. First item on my list: retrieve baggage. Eh, no excitement there. Of course, had they lost my bag, that would have created much excitement. aka stress. No...the hysteria set in as soon as I walked through the exit doors and all I saw was chaos. Yes, hysteria set in within my little brain and heart, but I didn't let it show through. I just told the taxi drivers no when they asked if I wanted/needed a taxi though in reality all I wanted was a ride to my quarters. I pressed on. But the panic manifested itself about 10 minutes later when a couple of tears stained my exhausted face. What the heck was I thinking when I thought to myself, "Hm, I think I'll go to Italy by myself." Well, nevertheless, the thought occurred and it has happened and I find myself alone in Rome. So I better make the best of it.
After siting a group of people waiting for a shuttle bus, I joined them. It cost 8 euros, eh not too bad, and we were headed to the Termini. Oh how I wish I was staying at the hotel across the street like 2 years ago. But I'm not. I'm staying in a convent with the Suore Teatine and I must say, I'm very grateful to one Ms. Roberts for making the suggestion. One that never occurred to me. Mainly because I've never done this before.
I arrive at the Termini station and think, ok, now taxi. How to get one? It was no problem. He asked me and while I knew better (my guide books say not to accept a taxi offer from a solicitor) I was desperate, going on 24 hours with no sleep and all I wanted was to take a shower and get some sleep. (I don't care where you are sleep is necessary at some point and for me, it is even more necessary). So I got in the cab. He said about 20 euros, I said how about 17, he said how about we see how traffic is. Once I realized how far we had to drive and how long it would take, I figured 20 euros isn't too shabby and esp. if I wanted a ride directly to where I am staying versus a bus ride which would take me how far away PLUS...yea, I'm staying at the top of a hill. Not ideal for a 50 lb. suitcase and 2 bags which weigh roughly, I'd say 20 together. I'll take the taxi.
After too many instances where I was certain a Fiat or motor scooter was going to crash directly into my door, I arrive at my destination. Meanwhile, I feel nauseated (a. motion sickness, b. hunger, c. anxiety) and all I want is to lie down. And I am about 10 minutes away from doing just that. I get checked in, my nuns are super nice and I am super ignorant speaking about 3 words of Italian (ciao, grazie, and buon giorno)--okay maybe four words--and here I am. I'm close to the Vatican though I haven't quite figured out how to get there yet. I'm figuring out the neighborhood on this side of the Vatican for now. The Vatican will be tomorrow.....