Tuesday was my last day in Rome 😦 I had learned about Villa d’ Este during my art history class last semester and I really wanted to go. It is supposed to be one of the most gorgeous gardens anywhere, and it absolutely was. I found it to be more impressive than the Vatican gardens. Plants of all types were everywhere along with fountains and sculptures. The garden is built into the hill underneath the Villa. Although the frescoes on the wall of the villa are gorgeous, they simply can’t compare to the beauty of the garden. The most impressive thing about this garden is the water EVERYWHERE! When they first made the gardens, they made a separate aqueduct in order to carry enough water to feed the many fountains and ponds. The mechanics behind the propulsion of the water were simply amazing. Although now, not all of the original methods for the propulsion of water are employed, it looks just the same and you can imagine what visitors must have thought of the place in the 16th century.
The architect genius used gravity to pull the water down for some parts of the fountain. There is a large triple layer fountain which stretches on for over 300 metres at the top of the garden. The sound of the water moving everywhere all around you is really magical. Sabrina and I spent plenty of time admiring the artwork and mechanics of each fountain in the garden. We also used her nice camera to do a little photo shoot, taking turns modeling and snapping each others pictures. We were constantly entertained by the 11 and 12 year olds who were at the villa on a field trip. Sabrina concluded that Italian men learn young how to catcall and flirt, as the little boys kept repeating “you so beautiful” and “I like you” to us over and over. The kids especially enjoyed practicing their English on us. They would run up and say “Where you come from?” and “How many years do you have?” Their energy and smiles were contagious and both us and the kids got a kick out of our interaction.
We ate the leftover pasta lunch we had packed while on the edge of the garden. To one side were several ponds and fountains, and to the other, a panoramic view over the rest of Tivoli and the countryside. A cat sat in the shade underneath a tree nearby and enjoyed our lunch with us. After seeing all of the impressive gardens and passing through the last few rooms of the villa, we headed to the town square and bought some gelato, of course! We ate the gelato then found out where to catch the bus back towards Rome. We took the metro back to the hostel and I got my bag together and headed towards Termini station to catch my bus to the airport. I was sad to say goodbye to my new friend & travel partner, but hopefully we will meet up again!
The bus from Termini to Rome Cimpriano takes about an hour, and once I got there I had a ridiculous time getting through security, then finally did. Then, my flight to Madrid got delayed so I went and got a sandwich and some french fries while waiting. When they finally announced the gate, I was amongst one of the first in line. But then, being Ryan Air aka the WORST airline on the planet, they decided to switch the gate around about 4 more times. After the 3rd time I was sick and tired of running through the terminal with people pushing and shoving in order to get to the front of the line. To remove myself from the animalistic and quite disturbing behavior of the typical Ryan Air client, I enjoyed some chocolate cookies at the cafe and waiting for Ryan Air to figure out what gate they would allow us to board the aircraft at.
Finally, I got on the airplane and flew back to Madrid! What a trip! I did so much in the few days I was there & certainly got in plenty of exercise to fend off the massive amounts of carbs I ate! Rome during March was perfect, good weather and not too overwhelmingly crowded yet. I would definitely like to return to see some areas I didn´t get a chance to go to. The magic of the Eternal City will always exist. As they say, if the Coliseum falls, the world falls. Haha I´m not so sure about that but I am sure the city is one of the most timeless in the world.