I arrived to Rome at 8PM last Sunday. It was pouring down rain and my umbrella was somewhere in my suitcase. I had travelled literally 12 hours by train that day. Left Munich at 7AM and after a 2 hour stop in Venice I made it to Rome in the raining evening.
When I called my host from Termini, she didn’t answer. I sent whatsapp messages… No answer. I tried to call a fourth time and she picked up this time. She sounded very apologetic, that was not a good sign.
She told me she forgot I was coming a day early.
My original reservation was starting on Monday but we agreed by email that I will be arriving Sunday night, since rooms in Venice are way to expensive – and I always want to extend my time in Rome. She said she had a terrible day and that she was not at the apartment, and that she lives 35KM from the city centre where the apartment is. Reminder: it was pouring down rain and I was exhausted, and hungry, tired and sleepy.
I tried to find the bus station, since she said her husband will arrive in 45 minutes to the apartment. I didn’t find that bus stop and started walking since the rain had stopped. In the map it didn’t seem like a very long walk from Termini Station… But it was.
When I was some blocks away from my destination it started pouring down again. I tried to find my umbrella and did not succeed, but the rain did succeed in wetting all my stuff… When I made it to the apartment I had to keep waiting for the host.
When he finally arrived and let me in to the apartment I discovered my room wasn’t clean. Of course… They forgot I was coming that day. He started to roughly clean it and I went to get me some quick dinner.
The guy at the Kebab place around the corner -only restaurant open at 10PM- gave me a free falafel, and that reminded me of the good things happening during hard times.
What surprised me was, I wasn’t frustrated about none of this. Now I realize it was a less than perfect arrival to my favorite city… But it was an arrival. I am in Rome. And even though I was caught under the rain in the middle of the street alone at night I reminded myself that this is life. This happens. This trip has taught me a lot, about me and about my life and I finally learned how to see the good in all things.
‘The only danger is to fall in love with Rome” And I am smitten.