posted by Guest blogger - Kris Goodbody | 0 Comments
Rome’s main port is called Civitavecchia. I still can’t pronounce it. We were one month into our cycle across Europe and our ferry had just docked one hundred kilometres north of Rome in this questionably named town. It was getting dark and we had to cycle a sufficient distance out of the town in order to camp.
The road systems were nearly as complicated as the place name and we had no map. It was also too hot to cycle in anything more than a very revealing pair of Lycra Cycling shorts, leading to our appearance as a very sweaty group of gay men heading for the Greek islands reaching an all time high.
Needless to say we made it out in one piece but this was the first day we realised that nothing in Italy works even remotely the same as anywhere else. Nothing is properly sign-posted, people’s hand gestures are far too erratic and the drivers adopt the old tactic of speeding up and beeping when anything gets in their way.
We rolled into Rome the evening of the second day and generally did as the Romans did - took photos of ourselves in front of St. Peter’s Basilicas and Coliseums, ate Carbonaras and drank €1 bottles of wine. We even managed to get into a multilingual verbal argument with an upset policeman.
Expecting to be passing through something akin to the rolling Tuscan hills, we were disappointed to find that the road to Naples was a seemingly endless chain of tacky seaside resorts. Though it was a little slice of paradise compared to what was waiting around the corner, in the city of the damned.
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