The best thing about being in a major city is that during the night if you get bored, or can’t sleep, you can just wander. I wouldn’t recommend strolling by yourself at 11pm, but going to find things when the city is quiet may be one of the best ways to experience it all; especially in Rome, there are just so many hidden gems to stumble upon.
My favourite thing about Europe, hands down, is its history; from the Ancient Greeks, to the Tudors, it’s all just so fascinating. To be able to understand how people lived, and died, thousands of years ago, I love it. For example, right now I’m sitting where Ancient Roman ‘insulae’, apartment buildings, once stood. There have been a lot of changes since then, but the concept of multi floor residences is still preferred in the city today. The Trastevere area became the fourteenth district of Rome during the reign of Augustus, starting at about 27 BC. 27 BC, that’s over 2000 years ago, 2000; My mind can’t even begin to wrap around that.
Now, the wonderful thing about having a roommate who loves night strolls just as much as you, is that you accidentally run into things like this:
Don’t recognize it because you’re not a nerd like me who watches documentaries on Ancient Rome constantly? Let me show you the front.
The Pantheon; we stumbled upon one of the greatest architectural feats the world has ever seen. How pretentious is that? Oh, just walking to dinner and BAM Pantheon. I hate myself.
Little history lesson here: The Pantheon was first constructed by Marcus Agrippa, during Augustus’ reign, as a part of three stage building program. It was destroyed in 80 AD, and later reconstructed by Emperor Hadrian. Most believe it was built in dedication to all of the Gods, as in Ancient Greek “Pantheion,” means “relating to all of the gods.” yes I got that off Wikipedia. Around 609 AD it was converted into a Christian church, and consecrated to the Virgin Mary and all the martyrs. During the Renaissance it also became a tomb for a few select artists, composers, and even a couple of kings. Today it is used for special masses and weddings.
Of course The Pantheon is known for its coffered concrete dome and oculus. Still the largest unreinforced concrete dome fyi. Hopefully I’ll go inside of it soon, and swoon over everything.
Just look at how ridiculously massive it is. How, how was this possible? Can we please go back to this style of architecture, please. Like, I haven’t even been inside yet, and I can’t handle it. It’s too much. I got emotional just walking around the columns. Which, just in case you were wondering, are in the Corinthian style and made of granite. didn’t even have to look that up. thank you history channel.
Nicole and I had just been trying to find a cute restaurant for dinner, not sight-seeing. Then, one alley of Christmas lights later, and hello. I’m 100% convinced it was magic. This sort of thing does not happen in real life. So, thank you Hadrian for needing to flaunt your architectural prowess, and reconstructing this temple. I really appreciate it.