York & Borgorose

Fiumicino Airport
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Dario dropped me off at the bus station to catch a ride to Rome, where I arrived about 1 pm. My plan to go directly to the airport, put the bags in left luggage, then go back to the city until late at night worked well. Unfortunately the bags have to be retrieved by 11:30 pm because the storage area does not re-open early enough for my flight.

The rest of the plan -- to stay up all night at the airport also came off as hoped. Given that my flight home left at 7:30 am, I didn't see much point in getting a hotel room only to use it for a few hours. I didn't want to spend the money on the hotel itself, nor the taxis getting to it and back to the airport. Plus I didn't have anyone to help with the Italian necessary to make it all work out.

In actuality I did make a few phone calls in a feeble attempt to find a cheap hotel room, but had no success with that effort, and so stuck with the stay-up-all-night-in-the-airport plan.

So, after dropping off my bags and returning to Rome, I walked up to the Borghese district, in hopes of finding the big balloon seen a couple weeks ago. Swen said that it wasn't too expensive to go up in it, so it sounds like fun. On the way there, I walked through the expensive shopping area of town, and passed by a couple of ancient Egyptian oblisks the Romans stole and re-erected here.

To make a long story short, I finally found the balloon but it had been grounded by strong breezes, so I was sad. I continued wandering around for several hours after that, and finally found an Internet cafe where I chatted with Shelley for an hour. Coughing continues to plague me, but those wonderful fountains aren't so plentiful in this part of town, although the huge park in Borghese had many decorative fountains.

Our site as seen from the bridge running along the hillside on the opposite side of the valley.

Truth in advertising at one of Rome's shopping-district boutiques.

This balloon takes small groups of people up 500 feet above Rome for superb views -- when the wind isn't interfering!

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