My wife and I went to Italy in the late summer of 2010 to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary. We tried to plan a trip for our 10th, 15th, and 20th anniversaries but something was always coming up and preventing us from doing so (those darn kids we have to take care of). I’m sorry, did that thought slip out?
Rome was our first stop in Italy. We landed in Rome at about 9:00 AM after a sleep deprived flight from Detroit to Amsterdam to Rome.
Our first clue as to the fast-paced life in Rome would be the taxi ride from the airport to our hotel.
We “spun the chamber” at the taxi stand and hopped in our ride, seemingly an innocuous event. The cab was small and did not look like it had enough horse power to match my first car, a 1965 Corvair that would shake and shimmy at 50 mph. Looks can be quite deceptive.
After informing our driver of our destination, he welcomed us on our first visit to Italy. I did not know we were preparing to embark on a taxi ride that would make the New York and Chicago cab drivers look like they trained behind the reins of an Amish wagon. While my wife and I were still in a sleepless haze, he shot out of the taxi stand with a sly grin. I felt like Slim Pickens riding the bomb in Dr. Strangelove minus his level of excitement. We weren’t sleepy anymore.
Can you be terrified and at the same time be impressed? Those thoughts don’t seem to go together, but oddly enough that’s what I was thinking as exhaustion turned to shock. We watched our driver perform levels of multitasking heretofore I thought were not humanly possible. He was talking to someone on bluetooth in Italian, while he was typing on a keyboard in the seat beside him and following the progress of his fingers on a monitor mounted on his dashboard, at the same time turning to pleasantly converse with us in English, all the while driving 70 miles per hour (sorry, 112 km per hour). He was speeding through traffic along roads that had four lanes painted, however, there were six lanes of cars. The one task he did not perform was to look in his rear view mirror as he navigated this roving chaos. My wife and I quit talking after five minutes. Instead we just looked at each other as if to memorize the face of the one we loved so we could be sure to recognize each other in the afterlife.
Rome is an incredibly wonderful city to visit. Like that cab ride, I was ever amazed at how fast and furious the city moved. I wanted to get a photo that showed the movement of Rome. This photo was taken during our night walk across the city. I did not have a tripod so I had to hand-hold this shot. We stood at this intersection and watched the traffic for a few minutes while I contemplated how I wanted to compose the shot in the camera. I was pleased with the result since I had to hold the camera and shoot at 1/25th of a second. It captured the movement of the traffic while keeping the buildings in focus. I wish I could say all of the shots that were tried at this slow shutter speed came out this well, but I think we all know the results of that venture.
We stayed in Italy long enough to make us long to return.
If you like this photo, you can see more here.