I forgot to mention yesterday that, for the third time since we left, Mary received a “Good news about your ticket” e-mail from the National Lottery. Unfortunately she cannot access her account from Europe so has had to ask Gavin to enter her details for her in order to find out how much she’s won. The first two times it was just a tenner and this third time it was ….. just a tenner! However Mary remains undaunted and fully expects to win enough to relieve her from having to go back to work next year.

The bright sunshine woke us up this morning, promising another fine Roman day. Over breakfast of George’s speciality mushroom omelette, we decided to get ready and go for a walk, initially around the campsite and then down to the supermarket from where we hoped to find the station.

It didn’t work out like that. We toured the campsite in 15 minutes, crossed the carriageway and went into the shopping centre for a quick browse. I then asked for directions to the railway station which turned out to be only a couple of hundred metres further along the road. Once we were there and standing in front of the ticket machine, Mary decided we would buy tickets and go for a general stroll round Rome. Quite what that meant I did not know, but I prepared myself for sore feet.

My radar told me to get off at the terminus (Flaminio) and take the underground one stop to Spagna, an area we had already visited. I had recently read that the park in Rome – the Villa Borghese – was near the Spanish Steps so I reckoned we could have a nice walk there and avoid the crowds. We took the Metro to Spagna and emerged right beside the famous steps which of course we had to climb up and back down again even though we had done that twice before.

Mary at the bottom of the Spanish Steps

The Trevi Fountain was the next target but we never made it, being drawn down the busy Via del Corso towards the obelisk in the centre of the Piazza del Popolo. Now that is a truly majestic Roman piazza, wide open with a cobbled surface and huge sculptured monuments and fountains all around.

Piazza del Popolo

Wifie with fountain











After a bite to eat at a rather interesting and bustling café we climbed the hill again and this time walked further over, eventually finding ourselves in the aforementioned park, the Villa Borghese. This was where we spent the rest of the afternoon in the company of tourists and locals out enjoying the November sun, a sun which was surprisingly warm and forced us to remove our coats for a while.

Same wifie, different fountain

Good-looking guy at another fountain









Once again we became aware of just how much we were enjoying ourselves and we put this down to the lack of urgency which had inevitably accompanied our previous two visits. No, this time we were really wandering about freely with no particular target in mind, allowing ourselves to stop as often as we wanted to take in the scenery. Yes, that was indeed the difference I think.

We did however stick to our rule about being back in the caravan before dark, so we left the city at about 4 p.m. and caught the train back to Flaminio where we stopped off at the supermarket to buy some bread and olive oil before walking back over to the campsite. I spent a couple of hours watching footie on a live stream before tea and Mary crocheted a blanket and baked a cake.

Sorry, that was a typing error: it’s meant to read “and Mary read her Kindle!”