Trying to Look Local

Conference day, so not much to blog about. Oh – except V is here. She did her fellowship with us and it is great to spend some time with her. She is awesome!

I spent all day in lecture, and I have to admit that it is sometimes difficult to go to meetings halfway around the world. After the time change, it can be a challenge to sit in a poorly-lit lecture hall and stay awake.

At the end of the day I returned to my hotel, gathered a few things, and headed out to the city to find dinner.

This is the sketchy path I walk down to get to the train station. That’s it, to the right of the car.

And this is the train station. It isn’t large.

A friend from work recommended a restaurant for dinner, Tram Tram, so I decided to go for it. It wasn’t in one of the more touristed areas, however. Instead, I found myself transferring from train to subway, to foot, and then taking a tram.

I honestly hadn’t even known Rome had trams!

The problem with being a wandering traveler is I sometimes have difficulty judging the level of risk. I can’t look at a neighborhood and judge my safety with anything but the number of pedestrians, and this really can be a poor gauge. As I was walking in a quiet neighborhood in the deepening Italian night, I reflected on the wisdom of an MTA agent who once told me, “You’ll be in Harlem. Try to look local.”

With my camera, I hardly look local here.

I kept walking and found Tram Tram without difficulty, and it was delicious. I’m not one to order meatballs in Italy (I get some of the best at home) but had read something about the meatballs here, and that was a good call. These rate amongst my top 5 (possibly top 3) meatballs ever. The sauce had a deep, delicious, caramelized tomato flavor. I might want more. Already.

 

The evening was growing late, and trains to my hotel stop early, so I couldn’t tarry in the city. After dinner, I caught a tram (yay!) to the metro, and eventually my train back to the hotel, well away from the vibrant energy of central Rome.

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