Green Room

Ciao, Roma!

posted at 5:44 am on March 8, 2013 by

I landed in Rome about four hours ago, but since that’s pretty early for a hotel check-in, I am now writing this from the rather nice lounge of my hotel.  It’s within a mile of St. Peter’s Square, and since I was apparently harboring masochistic impulses after taking the hour-long drive to the hotel, I decided to walk down to Via della Conciliazione to pick up my press credential.  Amazingly, given all of the bad press that La Sala Stampa gets, that turned out to be incredibly easy, well organized, and quite friendly.

After nearly two-mile walk back and forth, I decided then to test my luck in buying a disposable cell phone.  That turned out to be a little more difficult, as the one man running the WIND shop spoke almost no English, and my poor Italian turned out to be useless.  Two other customers pitched in to do a sort of round-robin translation, and I now have an Italian cell phone number, which I hope I don’t forget shortly after installing the SIM card.

To kill time, I bought a quick lunch at a pizza booth.  Note to self: don’t ever do that again.  It wasn’t bad, and it was cheap (€3 for the pizza and a bottle of water), but I think I’ll reserve my taste buds for better examples of la cucina Romana.

At this point, though, I don’t think I want to venture out again without a shower, a change of clothes, and a chance to rest my feet.  More later, if and when I make it to the media center today.  First, though, I have to read the extensive rules about what I can and cannot do while I’m there.

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Ciao!

hit the offbeat places that locals go to, food is much better

cmsinaz on March 8, 2013 at 6:22 AM

Sounds fun Ed! Have a great time.

conservative pilgrim on March 8, 2013 at 6:23 AM

hope mrs. morrissey is with you…

cmsinaz on March 8, 2013 at 6:28 AM

Ciao Ed!

Fortunately, Italians are very friendly and helpful. When they know you’re a foreigner and you speak Italian, they really love you.

Che Dio ti protegga durante il tuo soggiorno a Roma. (May God protect you during your stay in Rome.)

Saluti cordiali,
JoAnn

JoAnn1965 on March 8, 2013 at 7:04 AM

Ciao Ed! I’m glad you had a good trip over there. Get a bit of rest and try to get over the jet lag. It’ll take a few days. The walk probably did you good. If you actually get a little time off, try to visit time of the environs of of Rome. A Trip to Pompeii is a day trip.

simkeith on March 8, 2013 at 7:21 AM

Good to see you made it. Fortunately, they don’t even have a date for the conclave yet, so you should have plenty of time to get settled and de-jet-lagged. Remember that Daylight Savings Time starts this weekend, in case you needed to contact someone in the US at a certain time while you’re over there.

but I think I’ll reserve my taste buds for better examples of la cucina Romana.

Local pizza is okay in a pinch, I guess. Just don’t be the kind of American who flies all the way to Paris or Rome only to eat at McDonald’s. :-)

JimLennon on March 8, 2013 at 7:22 AM

Make sure that you go to Sabatini’s in Trastevere for pranzo. It’s a little pricey but the branzino is fabulous. They love my male Maltese Francesco there. He is a rock star in that place.

Also one block from the Vatican is the Church of Santo Spirito. It is dedicated to the Divine Mercy. Please go. I am praying that the Holy Spirit intercedes and rids your brain of the Fabian socialism that has infected the GOP.

Buon Giorno Bello!

Jayrae on March 8, 2013 at 7:43 AM

Ed today is Ladies day in Italia instituted by the Marxists to snub Motherhood. Don’t forget to give a woman some mimosa blossoms. You will appear so un-American and exhibit that continental flair.

Jayrae on March 8, 2013 at 7:51 AM

To kill time, I bought a quick lunch at a pizza booth. Note to self: don’t ever do that again. It wasn’t bad, and it was cheap (€3 for the pizza and a bottle of water), but I think I’ll reserve my taste buds for better examples of la cucina Romana.

How could ANY pizza be bad, especially in Italia? Like sex, even when it’s bad, it’s pretty good.

thebrokenrattle on March 8, 2013 at 7:55 AM

Just don’t be the kind of American who flies all the way to Paris or Rome only to eat at McDonald’s.

JimLennon on March 8, 2013 at 7:22 AM

There’s a McDonalds in the Piazza della Rotunda directly across from the Pantheon…it’s an outrage, but the only people I’ve ever seen in there are Italian kids.

Pizza margherita and a bottle of wine is our standard lunch whenever we’re in Rome…followed by a nap!

Trafalgar on March 8, 2013 at 8:10 AM

How could ANY pizza be bad, especially in Italia? Like sex, even when it’s bad, it’s pretty good.

Pizza is not from Italy–it was “invented” here in America after WWII by a returning GI. My full-blooded Italian grandmother who could cook blind-folded used to try and make pizza…it was NOT good!

robblefarian on March 8, 2013 at 8:13 AM

Have fun Ed – can’t wait to read your reports.

gophergirl on March 8, 2013 at 8:26 AM

Have a great time! I’ll be there in 3 months and there will be a new pope by then. I’m excited about it and I’m not even Catholic. :)

CityFish on March 8, 2013 at 9:07 AM

Sounds great so far. I am interested in the “rules” is that Italy wide or just at the Vatican?

Cindy Munford on March 8, 2013 at 9:08 AM

Pizza is not from Italy–it was “invented” here in America after WWII by a returning GI.

No, pizza is an Italian dish that was popularized by GIs returning from Europe, but there were pizza restaurants in the US dating back to the late 19th century, right about the time of the huge influx of Italian immigrants. Pizza has been made in Italy since at least the 10th century (well before the introduction of the tomato) and is by far the best in the world. Pizza-making there is truly an art form. I suspect Ed had a piece of the cold pre-made “pan-pizzas” sold by street vendors near tourist attractions, usually for around a euro. They are hideous. Avoid them at all possible.

WarEagle01 on March 8, 2013 at 9:14 AM

Shower? When in Rome, do as the Romans.

ButterflyDragon on March 8, 2013 at 9:17 AM

There’s a McDonalds in the Piazza della Rotunda directly across from the Pantheon…it’s an outrage, but the only people I’ve ever seen in there are Italian kids.

Pizza margherita and a bottle of wine is our standard lunch whenever we’re in Rome…followed by a nap!

Trafalgar on March 8, 2013 at 8:10 AM

There are very few public restrooms in Rome, so the Mickey Ds on Piazza della Rotunda is valuable for the WCs.

As for Ed, make sure you get some real pizza and pasta!!

Illinidiva on March 8, 2013 at 9:24 AM

Glad you landed safely Ed…Hopefully we’ll have an announced date for the conclave today.

Interesting article Book Review of Frank Newport, God is Alive and Well, Gallup Press by Bill Donahue on the state of religion in the US.

“We may not be a “Christian nation” in any formal sense, but we are a nation that is still dominated by Christians. Indeed, 80 percent of Americans are Christian; 16 percent have no religious identification (more about this later). What about all those new religions we hear so much about from the diversity experts? They exist, but are inconsequential: fully 95 percent of those Americans who profess a religious affiliation are Christian…”

http://www.catholicleague.org/state-of-religion-in-2013/

workingclass artist on March 8, 2013 at 9:26 AM

Yeah, worst pizza I ever had was in Italy. Sicily was a whole other kettle of anchovies. But Italian pizza … meh.

I walked to the Vatican from my hotel once, too, when I was 16. Unfortunately, the tourist map I used was not exactly to scale. What I thought might be a one-hour trek turned into more like 5. I did get to see a lot of Rome, though………..

GWB on March 8, 2013 at 9:49 AM

Sounds great so far. I am interested in the “rules” is that Italy wide or just at the Vatican?

Cindy Munford on March 8, 2013 at 9:08 AM

Heh. I think he meant in the media center, Cindy.

I suspect Ed had a piece of the cold pre-made “pan-pizzas” sold by street vendors near tourist attractions, usually for around a euro. They are hideous. Avoid them at all possible.

WarEagle01 on March 8, 2013 at 9:14 AM

That’s the sort I was talking about. (Though I was pretty sure pizza is a Sicilian dish, not Etruscan. But, I’m willing to learn otherwise.)

When they know you’re a foreigner and you speak Italian, they really love you.

JoAnn1965 on March 8, 2013 at 7:04 AM

Funny, I’ve always had them think that I could speak Italian merely because I could say “bon giorno”. Then they wouldn’t switch back to English even though I was standing there obviously not comprehending anything. I’ll never speak Italian in Italy again! (It’s funny, but also very frustrating. *shakes head* )

GWB on March 8, 2013 at 9:56 AM

Prego

cmsinaz on March 8, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Collect for the Election of a Pope or a Bishop from the Roman Missal:

“O God, eternal shepherd, who govern your flock with unfailing care, grant in your boundless fatherly love a pastor for your Church who will please you by his holiness and to us show watchful care. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.”

http://catholicdefense.blogspot.com/2013/02/the-churchs-prayer-for-next-pope.html

workingclass artist on March 8, 2013 at 10:09 AM

From EWTN

Prayer For The Election of a New Pope“Lord God, You are our Eternal Shepherd and Guide. In Your mercy grant Your Church a shepherd who will walk in Your ways and whose watchful care will bring us Your blessing. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, One God, for ever and ever. Amen”
Not one to be jealous or envious so how would I say “Wish I were there without sounding covetous of your wonderful opportunity to witness this historic event.

fourdeucer on March 8, 2013 at 10:44 AM

Pizza is not from Italy–it was “invented” here in America after WWII …
robblefarian on March 8, 2013 at 8:13 AM

.
Completely, utterly wrong.

ExpressoBold on March 8, 2013 at 10:47 AM

Prego

cmsinaz on March 8, 2013 at 10:05 AM

Ragu

JimLennon on March 8, 2013 at 10:51 AM

Interesting article about…the Americans…Although I think he should have mentioned Cardinal Burke, but he focused on Cardinal Dolan and Cardinal O’Malley.

America offers 3 strong possibilities…And that’s a good thing.

It will be interesting to get Ed’s perspective.

An American in Rome, Bound for the Chair of Peter.

Article Link:
http://chiesa.espresso.repubblica.it/articolo/1350453?eng=y

workingclass artist on March 8, 2013 at 11:16 AM

workingclass artist: what do you think of this analysis regarding the Americans?

http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2013/03/this-weigel-magister-axis-doesnt-seem.html

Ed: If you feel like sharing, what is your plan of action for reporting going to be? Do you have a schedule for posting? Are you planning on doing anything specific or is this going to be more a travelogue while also posting links to Catholic MSM stuff?

Vatican Watcher on March 8, 2013 at 11:38 AM

Jim lol

It means welcome :)

cmsinaz on March 8, 2013 at 11:39 AM

Happy to read you are there safe and sound although tired. They are saying it is going to start on Tuesday!

Enjoy Italy. I too hope Mrs. Ed is with you too.

CoffeeLover on March 8, 2013 at 12:34 PM

Allah lives in NY…pizza capital of the Eastern seaboard, and he orders Domino’s. Ed gets to Rome…pizza capital of Europe and the entire “Old World”, and he manages to find probably the one cruddy pizza place on the continent.

What is wrong with you two?

:P

JetBoy on March 8, 2013 at 1:00 PM

Ed – Don’t forget to have a gelato for me. The best place is “Old Bridge Gelateria” located just outside the north gate as you are waling around the wall toward the main entrance of the Vatican Museuem. The address is 5 Viale dei Bastioni di Michelangelo. Ciao!

cww on March 8, 2013 at 2:13 PM

Allah lives in NY…pizza capital of the Eastern seaboard, and he orders Domino’s. Ed gets to Rome…pizza capital of Europe and the entire “Old World”, and he manages to find probably the one cruddy pizza place on the continent.

What is wrong with you two?

JetBoy on March 8, 2013 at 1:00 PM

I know. You can get really good, cheap pizza all over Roma.

Illinidiva on March 8, 2013 at 3:50 PM

Ed, enjoy your trip! I still have family living in Napoli, it has been too long since I went to visit last and I must get back soon!

Have a safe trip and enjoy!

Liberty or Death on March 8, 2013 at 4:07 PM