When in Rome…see (the exterior of) Resurrezione de Nostro Signore Gesù Cristo dei Polacchi on Via di San Sebastianello

Spagna is our main stomping ground in Rome. For many reasons. Perhaps because we’re part English and are drawn to where gli inglesi used to come, and indeed to where Mr John Keats died. Perhaps because in truth our Roman life started in this area, it being from where we set out on that fateful first walk in May 2007. And perhaps because it is where we walk every work day with The Roman, past the Spanish Steps and down to Gran Caffè for our spuntini.

You would think, therefore, wouldn’t you, that the area had nothing left to give us. Well, dear readers, as so often with this city, you would be wrong. Because what October last year gave us was Via di San Sebastianello, one of the streets where Via Babuino meets Piazza di Spagna.

Along it are a number of current and former places of worship. We’ll start our little series about them with this one: Resurrezione de Nostro Signore Gesù Cristo dei Polacchi. Built in 1889, the Resurrection Church’s exterior can be seen below.

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When in Lazio…eat at Manturna in Canale Monterano

If the last time we ate at Canale Monterano was memorable for The Roman being ‘advised’ on what to do with grappa – their comments when the person giving the advice had left ring still in our ears – then this time what was most memorable were The Roman’s facial expressions and verbal comments when the ringing voices of the two middle-aged Italian couples at the table next to us could be heard above our own conversation. A happy memory!

But now to the food, partaken once more at Manturna. If you’re ever in Canale Monterano, do visit. It’s wonderful, starting with some house red.

And bread.

An antipasto.

A vegetable soup. Yes, complete with a fried egg.

Chicory, roast potatoes and some meat we can’t recall.

And finally an espresso.

Un bel pranzo, no?

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When in Lazio…explore Canale Monterano

Ever since we first went to – and failed to see the main sight – we have been promising ourselves that we would return. It took us almost two years, but we made it back in last October to Canale Monterano.

We started our visit at a bar, the facilities of which contained this rather amusing notice to patrons. As with so much in bella Italia, you don’t need to speak Italian to work it out.

Refreshments over, we walked through and out of the modern village. And in doing so, we were reminded once more of the beauty of the countryside.

On the return leg, we passed a street that reminded us of our Athens-born ancestor.

And saw the sign for a bridleway.

Lunch – of which more in another despatch – over, we took the car out to what we had really come to see: the abandoned village of Canale Monterano.

Which was the scene for some memorable parts of that sublime film, Il Marchese del Grillo.

Then it was on to other parts of the village.

Worth waiting two years to see, no?

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When in Rome…revisit San Giuseppe alla Lungara on Via della Lungara

It was over four years ago now that we visited San Giuseppe alla Lungara together. You can refresh yourself about that visit here. We revisited the church in October. Happily, in the time between our first visit and our latest, our camera had changed to a mobile phone. Therefore, there are more photographs in this gallery than the previous one. Those below will give you a flavour.

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When in Rome…see the latest exhibition at Sant’Andrea dei Vascellari

September saw us return to Sant’Andrea dei Vascellari to see the latest exhibition housed there. You can study it below and as ever for us the beauty of what remained of Sant’Andrea’s previous life was more beautiful than anything on display in its new.

Then, as we were leaving, we saw this: ‘May the last nationalist be strangled with the guts of the last technocrat’. And there, right in that second, we had a moment of revelation. Perhaps ‘May the last nationalist be strangled with the guts of the last technocrat’ holds the key to solving The Brexit Question.

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When in Rome…record the flights there and back

Over the past few months some of our flights have been rather bumpy. A couple in particular we recall. On one we were sat in the emergency exit row. Hearing the door rattle. And ratTLE. And then RATTLE. Yes, indeed. On another, somewhere over The Alps, we bumped up and down, UP and down, up and DOWN. AND UP AND DOWN, as we flew through cloud, unable to see anything through the window but white. Yes, indeed.

Of course, all of that gripping onto the sides of your seat is worth it, particularly if you’re on your way TO Rome. Especially if, when you look out of the window, you see this.

And, of course, once you’re in Italian airspace, then there’s no amount of gripping you won’t endure.

Not least when while making your final descent to Fiumicino, this is what you see.

Of course, the only drawback of flying to Rome is that before you know it The Cruellest Day comes round and you must fly FROM Rome.
Still even that has its consolations as you look back over where you’ve been and where, God-willing, you’ll be coming back to in the not too distant future.
Then, of course, as you approach The Alps you can, even from a distance, see the snow-capped peaks. And you think to yourself, ‘there ain’t no mountain high enough to keep me from getting to see that view’, no matter how bumpy getting to see it proves to be. Yes, indeed.

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When in Rome…discover something afoot in The Vatican

During our Christmas visit in 2017, we visited The Vatican and later wrote about St Peter’s – inside and out. As that visit was so wonderful, not least because as we went early it was not overflowing with people, we decided to go again this year. So having visited the nativity scene in St Peter’s Square, we headed into the basilica itself. Inspired yet again by our fellow blogger’s finding something afoot in Naples, we decided to focus on close-ups of feet and other body parts. Naturally, other things also caught our eye. You can see them all here and be teased by what is below, starting with this, at the top of the staircase down to the Papal Tombs.

Looking up, we saw this – ‘stuff’ everywhere.

A bronze panel, clearly well-rubbed in parts.

Lots more ‘stuff’ going on while looking up.

A shield. In marble. With a view.

And now a foot, with an owl behind.

And an arm with elevated view.

More feet, and not just human.

Men and beast.

An arm. With a cross. And also a view.

More feet. And more beast.

More body parts.

And some framing in the square.

A reminder of the importance of always having our eyes elevated.

And to conclude: a hand and a foot.

What will be next year’s inspiration, we wonder?

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