Tuesday, October 7th

 Today was a really busy day and we traveled all over Rome. First we stopped by the Largo Argentina (aka, the cat sanctuary - rightfully named because of the number of cats), and I gave my presentation on the site. After looking around there we walked up to the Palatine hill and learned about the stuff there. There was a lot of stuff on the Palatine and we started with the arch of Titus. After the arch of Titus we made our way through the ruins to see several temples, the arch of Septimius Severus (which I thought was the arch of Constantine for most of the day), the temple of Vesta, and several temples. We also walked up to the the top of the hill and looked at the palace of Septimius Severus and walked through a nice little museum before lunch. After that we split up for lunch and I got a sandwich and a fanta. I was trying to stay with people because I heard two different meeting places (the Colosseum and the arch of Constantine), but I wasn't really paying attention so I ended up by myself anyways. After gelato and some relaxation, I headed to the arch of Septimius Severus (which I was convinced was the arch of Constantine) to wait. I was there early, but by about 2:55 I started wondering if we were actually supposed to meet at the Colosseum. I waited and waited, and then at three I decided that this must not be the right place. At 3:00 I left for the Colosseum to see if I could find everyone before they got worried. The walk from the arch of Septimius was long, but about 10 minutes later I finally made it to the Colosseum. There were a lot of people there and I was starting to get worried that I wouldn't be able to find them anytime soon. Thankfully, Mike spotted me and waved me down. Once we were all together again, we went into the Colosseum and it amazing! There was a museum in there, and even though I wasn't able to get to the top I was able to get to the second level to look down on the floor of the arena.  Right before we were finished I had to present on the temple of Venus and Roma, and then we went back to the hotel for a little while, ate dinner, and then went to the sound and light show. The sound and light show was very informative and I learned a lot. The translator was very amusing (for example: the Romans lifted the heavy stones up to the top of the wall in a wheel; similar to hamsters in a hamster wheel), and the lights were amazing!
Wednesday, October 8th

 Today was the day that we went to the Capitoline Museum. The museum was very large and we got to see a lot of ancient Roman (and Greek) art. My favorite was probably the statue of Marcus Aurelius, but I also like the statues of Commodus, and many of the others. After the museum, we went back to the hotel and rested for a bit, and then I went to the Irish pub with a couple other people to eat.

Thursday, October 9th

Today we started our tour by going to the Pantheon (where I gave another presentation), and it was a lot bigger than I thought it would be. It's surprising that the Romans were able to figure out how to build such a large dome without any technology to reinforce it. After the Pantheon we went to the  Forum Borium, Theater of Marcellus, and the Circus Maximus. After the Circus Maximus me and a couple of friends went to go eat gelato, follow the Tiber river for a while and then head back the the hotel for a nap. I meant to get a lot of studying done, but when I laid down I slept for a long time and didn't get any done until after dinner. For dinner we went to the Irish pub again to listen to the Irish band, but since they weren't ready yet we left early.

Friday, October 10th

Today we went the the Ara Pacis Augustae (aka, the Altar of Augustan Peace) which Augustus Caesar set up as a memorial to himself for causing the Roman world to be at peace during the later part of his reign. After we finished at the altar, we went to the Villa Guilia and walked through the museum. I was really excited about this museum because it had the reclining Etruscan couple in it, and even though I missed most of the first bottom section I still enjoyed the rest of the museum. Once we were finished in there we split up and I went to the museum of Modern art. The museum of modern art is one of my favorite museums that I've been in so far and my favorite piece was the one of Cleopatra II. After that I took (another) nap and those of us who didn't have any family coming went out to dinner together and hung out for a while afterwards.

Saturday, October 11th

Today we went to the Vatican and while it's very popular I don't think it was anything special. I liked some of the stuff they had there, but there were too many people, and nothing really stood out. When I finally made it into the Sistine Chapel, I didn't realize I was in there because the guards were making everyone move forward and be quiet. I was so anxious to get out of there that I didn't realize until I passed it that I had actually passed through it without looking around. Because I realized this too late, I made my way back (probably against the rules, but oh well) so I could look around. Afterwards, I left through the wrong exit right after the Sistine Chapel and went through Saint Peters. Saint Peters church was huge, and it was really impressive, but again, there were too many people in there to really enjoy. After that I ate lunch and went back to the hotel to study for a while before dinner. After dinner I went out to take night pictures of Rome before we have to leave.

Sunday, October 12th

Today was our last day in Rome, and I was really sad to leave. I love Rome, and I feel like I could live several months there and still have things to see. This morning I slept in, and once we walked around for a little bit, ate lunch, and then waited for the bus. The bus was about an hour late, so when we finally got to the villa I was hungry and tired. It's been a long 3 weeks and I can't wait for some time to sleep in and relax.

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