October 11, 2009 |
Benito Mussolini, who ruled Fascist Italy from 1922 to 1943, had ambitious plans for the nation's capital. In the historic center he sought to uncover the remains of Imperial Rome, on which he modeled his new Italian empire, opening massive archaeological works and at the same time destroying many of the city's medieval landmarks. Outside the center Il Duce ordered the construction of whole districts in a new architectural vernacular that melded Roman classicism with stream-lined modernism.
October 4, 2009 |
I hear the waiter saying them, the first words of the story that brought me to this milk bar. "What's it going to be then, eh?" My answer: Bring me No. 66, the Diavolo -- "devil" in Italian. Five minutes later, he's back with a chocolate milkshake, whipped cream on top, absinthe on the bottom. Its menu number is almost right. Add another "6" and it matches the concoction's demonic effect. No, I didn't see green fairies -- the alleged absinthe experience. That would take absinthe with a strong dose of thujone, a chemical found in the wormwood plant.
April 27, 2009 |
The stocking repairman is long dead, the hat seller is gone too, but down Via Merulana the sparks still fly around Sergio Zoppo, his hands, the color of ore, skimming knife blades across grindstones. The steel heats and hums, a kind of music in the late morning air, coiling through the roar of buses, the whine of motorini. He looks up, glasses dangling on a string around his neck, his blue smock smeared with minerals and grime.
June 7, 2008 |
Police in Rome said Friday that they had recovered more than 2,000 looted artifacts and 1,500 fragments worth more than $4.6 million. The items include a fragment believed to belong to a 5th century B.C. wine cup by Greek artist Euphronius, which was returned by L.A.'s J. Paul Getty Museum in 1999. The cup had been looted from an Etruscan site near Rome and now is on display in the Italian capital. The items were recovered in three investigations earlier this year in private homes in and around Rome, authorities said.
June 1, 2008 |
Last fall, I asked myself where I really wanted to be. I had just returned to L.A. after four months in China and, before that, three years in Paris. I was living temporarily in a furnished studio apartment near the beach in Santa Monica. Road-weary, feeling like flotsam, with most of my belongings scattered in storage units around the world, I was finally ready to settle down. I knew without deliberating where I should be. Rome.
June 1, 2008 |
At a tourist information center near the Roman Forum, I asked an attendant whether anything was free in the Eternal City. He looked at me strangely, then came up with a response. "Si, signora," he said, pointing to the brochures on the countertop, "all these are free." It's like that in Rome, where prices for everything are high, even before you get sticker shock from exchanging dollars to euros. Here's how a budget traveler can try to make do.