Monday, 9 June 2014

Rose Shower

Today the church of St Mary and all Martyrs, otherwise known as the Pantheon, celebrates Pentecost with a Mass that ends in rose petals falling through the oculus. After we have said goodbye to our friends we head there to take our place amongst the crowd that have already gathered. As soon as the mass begins the crowd falls silent and beautiful choral music fills the incense perfumed air. Looking upwards it is strange to see a head peeping over the opening - one of the firemen who are tasked with throwing the petals. 

 The moment when they begin to fall is very special.

Once the mass has finished exuberance replaces solemnity as the children gather up bundles of petals and throw them in to the crowds.
People are collecting petals in plastic bags, baseball caps or whatever container they can find. A few of us are pressing them amongst pages in books - a precious memory of an unforgettable moment in our visit to Rome.
Lunch beckons and we make our way to Vivi Bistrot in Palazzo Braschi  where our table gives a ring side view of Piazza Navona.
Back to the apartment to chill before going out to our apertivo spot this evening, a little park opposite Palazzo Qurinale. We call this the Caribiniari park after the monument in the centre.

Children's laughter fills the air as an alfresco birthday party is being held in the bunting festooned play area. Occasionally a little one escapes to the water fountain where they delight in soaking the adults around them. A cake is produced to the sounds of 'Happy Birthday'. Before leaving each child gets a balloon model - the boys choose swords with which they immediately begin to fight with. The girls choose hearts or poodles!

After this entertainment we move on to dinner at Broccoletti. The d├ęcor is modern as is the food ,but with traditional roots. The menu's are on a couple of blackboards that move from table to table. Our server is amazing, switching from Italian to English to French, depending on who she is serving and extremely pleasant even though very, very busy. All the food was good but the pasta with salty ricotta & asparagus was another dish to dream about once we return home. We drank a local Cesanese wine from Villa Simone.

The evening was rounded off nicely with grappa at our local bar.

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