I have another day in Rome and then I go home. I have to admit that travelling alone is hard work, and I yearn for company. I am quite good at falling into conversation with fellow train passengers, diners, and other casual acquaintances, but I do yearn for a companion. However, lacking a companion, I make the best of it.
I went by bus to the Vatican. I cannot face the queuing and the crowds to go to San Pietro and to the Vatican Museums, but I went to St Peter's Square. There I fell into conversation with a group of Australians, who had a party of schoolchildren on tour. We had a pleasant
conversation and exchanged email addresses.
Tonight, as I dined alone, I talked to a young Swede, a cancer nurse. The Swedish government changed at the last election, and this man told me that cancer patients now have to travel quite some distance for their cancer treatments.
I am ready to go home now. Travelling solo can be stressful, and I do wish I had a companion. Dr P waa too old and unfit to travel with me, but he did, kindly and generously, make it possible for
me to travel, and my solo travels are a constant reminder of how he cared for me in this way, and so, as ever, I think of him constantly.
I caught a bus into the centre, and walked around revisiting places, and then, in the period when nothing is open, I walked along the Tiber. I love doing this, reflecting on the construction of the embankments, to prevent the disastrous floods of the past, and looking at the river, the Isola Tiberina and the Ponte Rotto, through the extensive branches of the trees, now changing onto their autumn colours.
The buses are very crowded and it is not easy to get a seat. I visited Piazza Navona and allowed the ubiquitous pigeons to feast on the crumbs from my panino. They do clear up a lot of mess. Piazza Navona was not very crowded, as most shops were still closed. I revisited Campo dei Fiori, which is where my sister and I stayed on our first visit. The market was finishing, and so I walked through Piazza Farnese and then through to Via Giulia and then to along the Tiber. I would like to go to the Gianicolo but have not worked out from where to catch the bus, and so, I expect, will allow the day to unfold itself.
I have one more day here and have not yet decided what to do. Probably I will wander, and make it up as I go along. There are churches and art galleries to explore, at will. I do so love tbis city.
And then I have a half day before going to the airport, and enduring the long flights home.