Sir can you please fasten your child’s seat belt?
No. He is very tired. Its your airlines fault. Look at the delay!
Regardless of that sir; its a flight safety requirement.
No. He is tired.
Where is the connection (!) I wonder?
Then I find out.The 3 year old brat is snoring already. And the actually-terrified-but-trying-to-look-irked father dare not wake him up lest he disturb his drinking session on the flight. Kids. They surely have the grownups dancing around them.
Oh well. I’m dancing in my head at the thought of going to Tivoli. Located 30 odd kilometres away from Rome and pronounced Tee-wo-lee and not Tiv-a-lee like the Tivoli Gardens in Delhi; this unassuming city houses a UNESCO world heritage site. And what a spectacular site it is! Villa dEste belies its grandeur when you first greet it. The real splendour lies behind its humble walls. While the villa is sprawling, its magnificence is showcased grandly in the Italian gardens.
There are scores of gardens that surround the villa with a surplus of intricately carved fountains which add the much needed coolness to the boiling Italian summer. The gardens lead from one to the other and each has a masthead of Roman figurines spouting water. It is the idyllic background for the setting sun.
As you walk past the villa into the city you”ll come across a sleepy Italian town which you have possibly read about in books and leaflets. Only the rustle of leaves; provided its a happy summer day with breeze; can be heard during siesta time. The shops are shut and so are most of the restaurants.In fact I experienced superb Italian hospitality at a family run restaurant with its doors shut to the public and the family lazily eating lunch, when they invited me in to eat something seeing me roam around helplessly in the searing heat. Superb and jaw dropping cheap prices for Prosecco and food made me a happy camper! A spot?of shopping and down a flight of stairs lead you back on the main street leading up to the station.
Tivoli may not be on the world or tourist map but its a great escape from Rome and all in the price of a cappuccino! Amen!
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