Rome: throw out your guidebooks by Rebecca Price Butler

Article originally published by Rebecca Price Butler on November 11, 2014 : http://alovelettertorome.com/2014/11/11/throw-out-your-guidebooks/

Throw your checklists and your guidebooks to the side for an afternoon after you’ve hurried through your itinerary. In Rome, if get a little lost, you’ll find a more brilliantly colored, darker life rushing at you than the one offered in print. Side step vespas and taxis and pilgrims and Romans and get lost for a while. Do as the Romans do.

Bow in and out of the slants of sunlight, use the sounds of water fountains and laughter as your navigation. An off the beaten path is not merely a passage but a rite and a full circle. Rambling in Rome for just one afternoon you become witness to passions thrown about in a cacophony that makes sense to you like a memory slowly re-emerging. It changes you.

A secret side of Rome, outside the guidebooks, forces you to taste the rich moments, and affixes in you a sense of the ancient. This feeling returns home with you if you’ve entered the eternal city with an open heart and mind.

What could I suggest to you but to drink in the sublime? See the city for the thousands of layers rather than one wild ramble. Actually, see it as both. The more embellishments the better.

Beauty is on display, yes, but so is depth and reflection of both the human and the divine. The celebration of the individual is found in the smallest detail. Art is a living thing. The story of mankind is a treasured relic, and a sip of espresso and a kiss. It is another language. It is the pull of the heartbeat we should all try to feel in our pulses before the veil falls over us. Rome is a reminder of death that is very much a reminder of life.

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