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Heading to Rome

Hi everybody! It's been a while since I've updated this travel blog... but it's been a lot longer since I've headed out this way, so bear with me on the details. I've been shuffling to pack all of our stuff since my wife and I just got married no later than 3 days ago. It's been a hectic whirlwind of planning and stressing, but I'm glad we got through it! Now we're happy and ready to enjoy the next stage in our lives.

Now for the moment we've all been waiting for... the HONEYMOON!

The worst part about the traveling is the actual traveling. The transatlantic flights are killer living in Los Angeles, so to recap... it's a 10 hour flight from LAX to London Heathrow, followed by a 2 1/2 hour flight from London to Rome. You end up losing a good chunk of the day taking this flight, so just be mentally prepared and drink plenty of fluids.

Oh yeah, and around this time, you'll encounter a lot of coughing/sneezing going on in the terminals. Just be prepared for that as well.

I've done a lot of domestic traveling for work, so it's been a good year since I've taken a flight out this way. The only advice I can offer is to pack warm during the fall. Living in Los Angeles, I get spoiled by the great weather here... so 60 degrees here might not necessarily translate to 60 over in Rome. Plus, during the fall... you get a lot of sudden drizzles out of nowhere. If you're constantly cold like I am and if you factor all the coughing/sneezing heads around you, you'll be prone to getting sick a lot quicker.

We got in around 9 PM on a weekday and took a taxi from Fiumicino to get to our hotel.

Lesson learned, take the white taxis and nothing else if you plan to use taxis. Any other taxi service is more than double the price. Since the drivers are paid a wage, it is usually a fixed price going one way. On the first night we got in, we relaxed and decided to stroll around at night. Around this particular area in Popolo, the streets are quiet, so be careful of walking down any alleyways by yourself. During the day is fine, but at night... you'll never know what you'll run into.

We ate at this little quaint place near our hotel called Al Vantaggio. My assessment of the place was that it probably wasn't the best option out of the places around the area, but we were so tired and hungry to find any other places. We ordered a bottle of chianti and shared an Italian sausage and mushroom pizza along with an antipasti dish of roma tomatoes, olives, and cured meats. Needless to say that Rome's specialty dish is pizza, so no matter where you go... you can't really go wrong with pizza anywhere. I haven't been to a place in Italy where their pasta & pizza dishes weren't top notch.

After an after dinner stroll, we wandered into a wonderful chocolatier/gelato place called Venchi. It's apparently very popular in Italy. My recommendation is if you find yourself anywhere near one of these places, it's a must visit. Gelato is a must. You won't regret it! Italian gelato is nothing like how it is in the states. Not sure what they put in it, but it's just amazing.

This concludes day one! Can't wait for the rest of the trip to commence.