Ok, so you want to study abroad. What you really want to do is get drunk, get some strange ass that does not speak your language, and in turn, avoid any weird strain of European STD's. Studying abroad is a rewarding experience in everyway, except financially. Selling a kidney is not out of the question if it means getting freaky in a foreign country.
Congratulations, you're going to Rome! On the plane ride over here you watched the movie Gladiator three times. Now that you are completely obsessed with the Colosseum, that becomes the only thing on your mind as you step off the plane and begin to tour the city. Unfortunately, the tour you take brings you to some other boring stuff, but the most awesomest place in the ancient world, the Colosseum, never waivers from your mind. So as you tour the other parts of the Eternal City not named the Colosseum, here's a helpful guide that will give you a little taste of what to expect.
Motto: Senatus Populusque Romanus
Translation: All pasta dishes come with a choice of soup or salad
Established: Construction Began: April 21, 753 B.C.
Construction Completed: April 21, 753 B.C.
Vatican City: Be on your best behavior. Walk, don't run. Don't touch anything, and don't laugh at the statues' penises. Now there is going to be a ton of lines for everything, so you'll have to be patient, remember, God is watching. Do not be startled if altar boys come up to you and quietly ask you to help them escape. It happens more often than you think, so just try to ignore them. Alert the nearest bishop, and he will deal with the little boys accordingly. Hey guys: absolute worst day to wear your boxers on backwards. The clergy can sense that hole in your underwear and it will make you a prime target for the priests.
Dumpy looking ancient building: OK, there are a lot of these in Rome, and it doesn't matter which ones you go into because they are all pretty much the same. This one, with crumbling columns and no roof, is built for an individual's past achievements. Ancient Romans loved to congratulate themselves. Did you win a battle? You did! Good job. Let's build a temple with your name on it. You won a war? Dude, you are awesome. Bigger temple. Naked statue of you with a big dong, and fuck, you can bang all my daughters. As you tour this poor excuse for a civilization, ask locals where you can find the Colosseum. If you can't speak Italian, ask in the form of charades. Act out gladiators fighting and Christians being eaten by lions, the friendly locals should point you in the right direction.
Crappy looking ancient building: The tour guide brought you to yet another building that looks identical to all the rest. Except this one has a roof, but the columns are still crumbling. So if someone sneezes, you could be dead. The tour guide is going to say how awesome this place used to look, but as you look around you see nothing but over-turned rubble. Tour guide will be very vague as he points out where "golden facades" used to be. BOOOORING. Keep yourself occupied by looking for the Colisseum through the holes in the wall. Also, ask your tour guide "Did someone die in here" with every new room you go into. He'll get annoyed with you, but if/when he says "yes", marvel at the awesomeness.
Trevi Fountain: This baroque style fountain was commissioned by Pope Clement XII and was finished in 1762. The traditional legend is that if one throws a coin into the fountain, they are insured a return trip to Rome. Like Hallmark inventing Valentine's Day, this tradition was started by Rome's City of Commerce to bait touristsinto coming back to Rome. Throw yourself in, and you can be ensured never to come back again. You have a fountain just like this in your mall, it's no big deal.
Spanish Steps: These famous steps have been said to be "without a doubt, the longest and widest (that's what she said) staircase in all Europe" by The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. Completed in 1717, these steps are a great place to sit, relax, and check to see if you have been robbed, or violated in anyway. It is one of Rome's very few cost-free attractions, but not for long. Italy is still trying to finance the loss of World War II. Ask somebody where the Spanish Escalator is. And for heaven sakes, ask somebody why they are not called the Italian Steps.
Pantheon: Originally built as a temple to all the gods of Rome, it is the city's best preserved structure. The domed rotunda above, and the marble walls and floors allow a magnificent amount of sound amplification and reverberation throughout the building. The incredible echoing has made the Pantheon National Geographic's #1 place to play the "penis" game. With that said, it is also the #1 place on this list that you'll most likely to get kicked out of. Now that you've been thrown out onto the streets by Italian policemen, it is time to go to the Colosseum.
Colosseum: (Note the 16 foot Russell Crowe statue out front before you walk in.) Yes, this is fucking it. This place is so sweet. You spent a butt load of your parent's money and spent the whole day on a boring tour just for this moment. Take tons of pictures, fill up that memory card. Only respond to the name Maximus while you are there. Upload pictures onto Facebook when you get back to the hotel. Album: Colosseum 196 pictures. Album: Rest of Rome 3 pictures
Useful Italian Phrases to Learn:
I would like lemonade, please.
Amerei la limonata, per favore
Do you have any Chef Boyardee?
Lei ha qualunque Boyardee di Chef?
Don't shoot! I have no money!
Non sparare! Non ho denaro!
For the love of God, just tell me how to get to the Colosseum!
Per l'amore di Dio, dirme appena come prendere al Colosseo!
You have some updog on your shirt.
Lei ha della sucane sulla sua camicia.
*I have never been to Rome