Vacatio (Latin) = Lack, absence
Few days ago one Roman host posted, in a group of a social network, the comment that one of her guests left about the stay in her apartment. The comment was very positive for the apartment, but the problems came. Here is, textually, what the guest wrote
We stayed 3 nights in Rome. I really wouldn't recommendo staying any longer unless you are a history buff. We were very underwhelmed by the experience of the Colosseum area and even the Vatican Museum. My favouriteplanned visit was to St. Peter' Basilica and the difficult walk to the top.
Aside from that we just enjoyed walking around to the Trevi Fountain and Piazza Navona. We couldn't wait to leave & head to Positano.
The guest was a 30 y.o. bride from New York having the honeymoon in Italy.
Most of the comments by other hosts were about the lack of culture of that person. Frankly speaking I believe that what was missing was something else.
Let's go back to the word vacation, derived form the Latin, the language that was spoken in ancient Rome, vacatio.
When on vacation, one should stay away from everything that is similar to daily life. It is not a case that no one considers to be a vacation stayng at home during the weekend, To be on vacation it is necessary a big change.
Going to seaside or to mountains for a skiing vacation is a big change. Visiting a big city is not itself a big change, simply because most of the people live in a big city. If the don't, that is if they come from a small town or a village, the impact with a big city can be difficult. Well, that's not the case of the bride. She was coming from New York, a city taht is even bigger.
But what she saw is exactly what she is experiencing every day: chaos, noise, crowded sites and so on.
Is there any difference among those two picture? Not really, just the buildings on the back.
|Crowd at Times Square|
|Crowd at the Colosseum|
So why leaving New York to stay in the same situation in Rome? Furthermore, why doing that during the honeymoon, a period of the life when one would like to be on a full vacation?
Dear New York's bride, you are not guilty of lack of culture or something elese. You reacted as anyone, including myselg, would have reacted if left alone.
Your fault, if any, was to believe to those claiming that staying in an apartment is the best way to live as a local. No, staying in an apartment is the best way not to be on vacation, to stay like in your home, or even worse.
You would have deserved a Good Morning by the host or the by the staff every day and someone delivering to you a cup of coffee, just to start in the best way. You would have deserved someone, the host or other guests, talking with you every morning to understand your mood, to suggest you which sites to visit away from the big crowd, to give you their feedbacks.
You would not have deserved to stay alone in an apartment, without any of those things.
Rome is a city that may be seen in several ways, not only the historical one. There are art, religion, politics, architecture, engineering, curious places, romantic spots, all of them away from the crowd.
One of my best moments in New York was looking at the families playing baseball (or is it softball?) at Central Park. You may look at the archeological site of Largo di Torre Argentina from an historical point of view. There is the historical one, it is the location of the Curia of the Theatre of Pompey, the place where Julius Cesar was killed on March 15, 44 BC. But I would have recommended to you to look at it also as a Cat Sanctuary, a shelter for homeless cats.
You should have been told that most of the best restaurants of Rome are out of the center.
Therefore you were not on vacation, you were staying at home far away from your own home.
We run this blog to give to our guests our recommendations, to be close to them at any moment.
And we do not forget to tell to them - Good Morning- evey day