Rome and Cats

I don’t believe there is anything that I can tell you about Rome that you don’t already know or haven’t already seen so I’ll keep this short.

So after our trip to Santorini, we flew out to Rome to spend one night there before going back to Berlin. So with two whole days to go roam around, we tried to make the most out of it.

aP1080449
But first, lunch. Buffalo mozzarella is an essential part every trip to Italy. It’s just sooo goood.

After lunch, we took the mandatory tour of the Roman Forum and Colosseum. Obviously, it was fantastic and worth a visit – just probably not on a summer’s day because it just gets really hot in Rome this time of the year. We would have wanted to see more if it hadn’t been 40C outside.

aP1080473
But this is just gorgeous from all angles.

We were surprised by how cheap a cab ride is in this city – to a point that we even let ourselves be toured by a local cab driver, showing us the most important attractions in this city. We didn’t have to pay more than 10 € for a 10 minute ride with light traffic.

For more flexibility, we decided to rent Vespas – one for each couple, to complete the whole Italian experience.

IMG_3029.jpg
And realised they are not exactly comfortable for riding in tandem…

At night we drove around Vatican City, and then to Fountain Trevi. Some attractions in this city are just so busy even late at night.

The next day, our friends woke up to some bad news from back home and they had to leave for LA with the next flight. We were supposed to leave Rome at night then spend the whole day in Berlin the next day and drive them to the airport the day after that. The wife and I then decided to make a quiet day of it, just driving around on our Vespa.

At some point in the afternoon, we went to Torre Argentina. Today it doubles as a cat sanctuary that houses around 150 gatti. It may be visited in the afternoons during which you may choose to adopt a little feline of all ages. They also sell some goodies like towels and mugs made by a few volunteers to help raise some money for the cats’ needs. Don’t forget to leave a donation!

aP1080507

 

aP1080520
They are so lucky to be taken care of by volunteers, surviving off donations from locals and tourists alike. And they get to live among ancient ruins of this historical city!

aP1080523

From there, we walked towards the Pantheon, which in my opinion, was the most beautiful attraction in this city. Seeing the inside of this building is free of charge and it’s just amazing how it’s still standing hundreds of years after it was built.

aP1080544

And after we have satisfied our eyes and tastebuds with all the best of Italy, we took our ride to the airport to take our flight back to Berlin. It was a short holiday indeed, but so eventful.

Screen Shot 2017-08-20 at 22.46.30
All these in less than a week!

 

Ah, but before we go…

aP1080540
Gelato!

Lady Wood – Tove Lo Live in Cologne 2017 and Feminism

A two week break from work means finally getting to work on my drafts. I have been meaning to do this for a while now, sure, but life gets in the way every so often. Believe me, I’m not complaining. I have actually come to a point in my life where I am mostly satisfied – career, social life, even my health is going in the right direction. So forgive me if I take a break every once in a while. 🙂

Two weeks ago I took ICE train to Cologne to meet with my sister. I got two of those 20,- € fares they offered some while back, and I’m SO GLAD I have made this choice. I would usually opt for a pair of RyanAir tickets whenever I go to Cologne/Bonn (which I so often do because of family) but for this event I chose Deutsche Bahn because, really, I haven’t been in an ICE in maybe ten years. But on that very day, Berlin was nearly falling apart because our only two operating airports are on a strike so just imagine how elated I am to not have chosen a flight to CGN. Close call though. 🙂

So the train ride was uneventful but a good five hours later I was welcomed by my sister in what I’d like to call “only the second coolest city in the world”.

The next day we went to Live Music Hall for Tove Lo’s show. I had been to one of her shows about two years ago and I told myself I’d go again if given a chance. I gotta give it to her though, her performance has improved dramatically since I last saw her. I wasn’t familiar with some of the songs from her latest album, Lady Wood, but I knew the ones from her first album by heart. It was entertaining to see so many young people in one place listening to the same music you listen to. While I didn’t see much of the artist herself because, well, I’m tiny, I was perfectly happy just being surrounded by all the energy coming from the crowd.

Another thing that has changed in the last two years is the price of her merchandise! I remember buying one of her t-shirts for maybe 25,- € or even less and now I get a sweater for the price of 55,- €! Lucky for her, though, I’m kind of obsessed with her brand logo so I got it anyway and I even believe it’s worth every penny but, geez. Good on her though for becoming really famous. 🙂

Had to add this pin to my haul simply because I’m obsessed with this logo and also girl power

 

So I don’t know when I will ever be back in Cologne but I do believe this blog needs a little touch of the Dome. 😉

Red Hot Chili Peppers Live in Berlin

Let me tell you a story:

Back in 2011, when I just got back to Germany after living in the Philippines for 13 years, I was excited about all the things I felt like I missed out on in all those years. For instance, I’ve always wanted to watch my favourite artists live in concert but none of them would come to the Philippines. There are only a few international artists that do a show in Manila as part of their world tour and most of the time, they are not the ones that I actually want to see. So when I got back here, one of the first things that got me excited are the news of the upcoming concerts being announced on the radio. One of which, if you can guess, is of the Red Hot Chili Peppers!

But considering that I just got back, that meant I didn’t have a job. The frustration just grew bigger when I saw the opportunity to realise my dreams but didn’t have the funds to do so for it just wasn’t the right time.

The funny thing about giving up sometimes is that, when you’re lucky, another opportunity just shows itself out of the blue, reminding you that it’s not too late to still keep going. So my first job happened to be none other than serving drinks at the very location of all the biggest concerts in Cologne. Sure, the job didn’t involve watching the actual concerts that are going on, but I did get the glimpse of the happenings from time to time. And that’s when I first saw the Red Hot Chili Peppers perform live – for like five seconds.

Now, a good five years later,  and a few cents more than 80€ richer, I can finally afford to go to the RHCP concert. And I must say, they don’t seem to have aged a day! They have been around since forever but they still have all this energy to stimulate the crowd of the, not surprisingly, packed Mercedes Benz Arena.

I am so glad to have experienced their greatness the other night because, for me, it wasn’t just a concert, but something more sentimental than that. It’s a reminder of what I’ve achieved since their last world tour and it gave me something to look back to whenever I feel like a failure. ❤