Thursday, May 19, 2016

Pantheon, Still There After All These Years

Well, in several days time, I've been teary eyed often, as I see the remembered and experience the same rush of wonder that I did when visiting Rome for the first time with ES three years ago. This morning I will write a bit as ES and grand daughter Arianne are both still asleep, even though it's after 8:00. We will convene for breakfast downstairs in an hour and then we are off to Campo dei Fiori for the morning market and onward from there to inspect and admire more Baroque paintings at a museo, the name of which escapes me.
The first thing I wanted after we arrived from Houston on Sunday was a walk from our hotel to the Pantheon and so we did just that. The Roman Pantheon never, never disappoints. It sits awkardly in a piazza, grand and holding its own, this 2000 year old structure with giant granite columns quarried in Egypt and brought by river barges across the Mediterean and up the Tiber Riber. Human beings are dwarfed by these columns. Their trip from Egypt and their monumental size gives one pause. Then there is the engineering of its dome, its oculus open to the sky in the center of the roof. 
But what I like best is the way it sits there, majestically, waiting for us to see it as we round the corner of one of the many narrow streets that lead on to the piazzo. Suddenly there it is, compelling us to move into its space through quiet crowds. Standing before it, somewhere near the fountain - well, that spot is my favortie place in Rome.

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