Cedrick Lui

The personal website of Cedrick Lui, used to promote and present his projects as well as act as a blog.

Rome, the oven city

This morning we woke up after a very peaceful sleep...  for Nita and I.  Hauke and I went to the market for our breakfast of mozzerella, fresh basil, baguette, cold cuts, cherry tomatoes and balsalmic.

We ate our relatively healthy breakfast in preparation for our long day.  Some blank pages of this book were sacrificed for lighting the gas stove.

We headed out and stumbled on the steps of a gorgeous building in front of a large intersection.  We found the tour bus and waited for it by the tour vendor.  The city is saturated with tourists and the vendors that come with the tourism.  Everywhere we go, streetside vendors selling water, or shoddy souvenirs line the streets.  Human statues and rigged "floating" yoga experts all vie for a euro or two for a picture.  I generally enjoy these spectacles as I can usually fend off pushy flower and drink salesmen.  today I was fascinated by their dedication as the day was unbelievably, unrelentingly, and inconceivably hot.  HOT.  Not a cloud in the sky, the sun beats down on all of Rome with an intensity I've only experienced in Japan.

Realistically it probably gets as hot in Ottawa, but with the huge crowds and constant movement, the day became more and more unbearable by the minute.  We ensured our safety with low ambitions and lots of stops/water.  Our first stop was the ex Palazzo di Giusta where we saw the usual vendors as well as gladiators dressed to sweat and bake as they asked for a picture for a small fee.  A man with 2 parakeets placed them onto paying tourists in his white chaplin make up.  Silver statues failed to capture the imagination of the hordes of tourists.

Spanish steps
We continued our double decker tour in the frying pan city to the spanish steps.  We walked to a small cafe where I enjoyed an alright pizza bread and Nita had a great carbonara.  Afterwards we went to the crowded steps and went to the church at the top.  Hauke and Wakana could not get on as their knees were bare so Nita and I sat in the whisper-quiet room.  An inspiring painting captured my imagination of an angel flying low over sinners wrapped in snakes.  Thus far most of the art I've liked has been somewhat macabre.  We went down the steps and walked towards our stop.  and walked... and walked.  The sun was boring an intense hole into our skulls forcing us to stop in the shade for more gelato.  We walked more and realized we had not only missed our stop, but were close to the first stop where we got picked up.

We filled our bottles at a public fountain along with many other passersby and took shelter in a small park area in the center of a huge roundabout.  From there we watched crazed drivers cutting to and for as we rested under large trees.

We took our hop-on bus again to our hotel and I swore never to leave in the dead heat of noon.  After market-bought pasta we cooked for ourselves, we set out (minus poor zonked Nita) for a walk.  The day was much, much cooler in the evening so Hauke, Wakana and I walked far into town over the river.  My SD card was full so I spent time deleting a few pictures along the way.  We stumbled upon som bridge buskers with a dijjeridoo, palm drum and a sitar sounding instrument.  I called it stoner bridge.

We also saw a set of ruins in the street that was preserved.  Among the grassy knocked over pillars sat a bunch of cats that lounged comfortably in their sanctuary.  Beside the ruins was a poster with cat pictures reading:

Please do not feed the cats.  These cats were hit by cars following people that fed them.

So sad.

We got back exhausted and prepared for Naples the next day.

Background images by C. H. Kim. All images are © Cedrick Lui unless otherwise stated. All rights reserved.