Rainy Rome: Walking to Castel Sant’Angelo at 7:00 AM

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I contemplated whether I should go outside because, honestly, I am not too fond of the rain. Yet, I found myself slipping on my bulky navy and brown duck boots, a popular shoe for snow and rain at home. In Italy, not so much. Other people seem to wear sneakers or simple black boots. I felt a bit self-conscious walking with my boots and bright blue transparent umbrella. It’s a bit beaten up because it was given to me by a man named Marcel when I was visiting his souvenir shop near Piazza Navona. Despite the condition of the umbrella, I held it with pride.

Castel Sant’Angelo is right around the corner of Via Pietro Della Valle. The rain tapped the top of the umbrella as the wind pushed me along Via Crescenzio, the main street. On this early morning, I did not see many people. The wheels of cars disturbed every puddle on the road, however big or small. I looked up to the sky, and it was a muted blue color, almost grey, entirely covered with clouds. The dark green color of the Pine trees stood tall, even in the rain. The top is resembling that of a portobello mushroom.

As I walk past the black gates, I notice the black cobblestones look sleek and dark, coated with the rain. I already slipped once in the rain while walking down the ramp in front of Temple Rome, and I was careful not to make the same mistake. The green moss fills the cracks between the cobblestones. The small pebbles, soggy leaves, and scattered branches crunched under my boots. I made my way down to the lower level where the playground is. There are three little seats: a green seahorse, a blue dog, and a red dinosaur. There are two sets of swings and playgrounds for children aged two to three to the left of the three little seats. Usually, there are many dogs, children, and people working out throughout the park. I was not expecting anybody. I thought, who would willingly want to go outside on a day like this?

To my surprise, I did see a couple of dogs and runners. I admired the dogs who were wagging their tails and soaking their paws by running through puddles. The couple of dogs I saw that seemed so happy to be outside. They don’t have a specific place to be, while all the people I observed were on their way somewhere. As I gaze towards the castle, it stands out against the muted sky. The red-orange castle dominates the park. I wonder what the court looks like on the inside. Now that Lazio is in yellow, I can finally make a trip sometime soon. For now, on this early morning, only the birds freely have access to the castle.

Image 1 Caption: Castel Sant’Angelo on a sunny day & me sketching/journaling
Image 2 Caption: Pine trees in Rome