Rome Travel Guide

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Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Decorated Rome

There's a hard side to Rome, and a soft side.  The hard side is crazy traffic, failed mass transit, and a politics built on division and conflict, dating back to the Fascists and Partisans of the World War, the bitter and violent Anni di Piombo of the 1970s, and today, differences over gender, race, and immigration.

The soft side is romantic and seductive: the Trevi Fountain, Trastevere in a light drizzle, comfortable restaurants and seductive cafes.

On the soft side, but less noticeable, is a Roman fondness for informal decoration.  We've noticed this aspect of Rome many times over the years.  Here are some soft-side images from 2019, 2018, and 2017.

Monteverde Vecchio: nursery guy does this with his truck:

In Aurelia, an older woman--perhaps homeless, more likely just eccentric, but clearly a fixture in the neighborhood--had decorated this seatless bicycle more or less as a shrub, with a basket of plants and flowers off the back tire:

    Fancy paint job:

    Another fancy paint job:

   A sidewalk stairway in Trastevere, in all its crocheted glory:

Red umbrellas as driveway decoration, Prati

A small commercial truck, with an historical theme:

The scooter windshield of a Roma fan who hates Juventus (sometimes there's a hard side to the soft side):

And last, cheating a bit because it's Sicily, not Rome--a melon vendor looking back to JFK (2016):


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