Mom and Dad were here all weekend. They arrived safely and on time Friday morning in Rome. I met them around midday at their hotel, we had a nice lunch, and then I went to school to study while they took a short nap.
We met up again for dinner with my friend Sara at a trattoria near the Spanish Steps, called Trattoria Otello alla Concordia. Our reservation was for 7:30 but we got there a little early, and the place wasn't even open yet! So we walked around for a while and did some window shopping. After dinner mom and dad went to the hotel again to catch up on some ZZZ's because neither had slept well on the plane and they were extremely jet-lagged. Sara and I went to Art Cafe for some late-night dancing.
The next morning mom and dad woke up early for a tour of Rome which lasted until the evening. I did some studying for midterms. We met up again for dinner at a pizza place recommended by a magazine called Where Rome. It was really good pizza but very slow service. We wondered whether they had forgotten about us! In actuality, that's just the way it is here. No one got their pizza very quickly; it is probably made fresh to order.
I took a cab home and attempted to do some more studying.
On Sunday at 11,00 mom and dad met me at the Ottaviano metro stop where we walked to the Vatican city together. Arianna also met us at St. Peter's, and we all listened to the Pope's address at 12,00. Being German, his Italian accent was a little more difficult to understand, and his English as well! But it was a great experience to be in the piazza for this Catholic/Italian tradition and I was glad they had met Arianna.
In the afternoon, I took mom and dad on a bus to my school. Dad was happy to finally see the Sycamore trees lining the streets on the way over, hehe. I showed them my quasi-campus and my printmaking studio. Then we walked towards Piazza del Popolo and stopped for lunch on the way. It turned out to be a sunny day so we ate on the tables outside. We shared chicken, rice with mushrooms in a white wine sauce, meatballs with peas, bread, and Coca Cola. After lunch we headed into the Piazza, and then into Villa Borghese. Mom and dad got Gelatto and I headed back to school.
Yesterday, mom and dad did a half-day tour of a hill town where the Pope stays on vacation. They said it seemed as though the bus wasn't going to make it over the small bridges and narrow streets. The place was not tourist-y at all, and the shopowners barely spoke English. They did a wine tasting and bought some pastries from a bakery.
After class at 18,00 I met them at their hotel again, where we exchanged much-needed items from home for my heavy sweaters and winter things. Then we went to a bancomat so I could give dad a short-term loan, since another bancomat had eaten his credit card the day before! When this was done, we ventured over to Casa Mia (my house) for dinner with Arianna and the kids.
Gifts were exchanged, and Italian words. Mom did very well! Maybe better than me as far as comprehension :-/
We had dinner of tortellini soup, my favorite bread with nuts, bread with olives, polpetone (like a meatloaf), meat with a "salsa verde" (green sauce), and dessert of fragole from Spain (strawberries) and homemade panna (whipped cream). And wine to compliment the dishes. Arianna is a great host :-)
My parents really enjoyed the dinner. We talked about a lot of different things like food (of course), colleges in the United States, taxes, previous homestay students, Iraq and the war, customs, family, and much more - in Italian and broken Italian. It lasted for a few hours and then Arianna graciously drove us back to the hotel. My parents have now experienced pretty much every mode of transportation possible in Rome... airplane, cab, metro, bus, car, and on foot! We said goodnight and goodbye, and Arianna and I went back home.
Today my parents are in Firenze (Florence) and I have a midterm at 18,00. Poo. I will be updating this post with pictures later tonight.