Monday, October 17, 2016

Rome day 30

A 37 day imaginary travelogue of a trip to Rome (with a few scattered other places such as New York). This is written to match the journey I am actually taking, and so each post is concurrent with the more or less actual day my wife and I are experiencing in Rome.

What day number are we on?: 30

Level of writer's drunkenness (in real life, scale of 1-10): two. Some late night before bed wine, a fruity shiraz, cheap, without any great grace, but friendly enough.

What am I eating (in real life again)?: Had some carrots and hummus. This has turned out to be an odd line item since I don't really eat down in my basement studio, so at best I tell you what I recently ate.

Map or picture?: It looks like this and it doesn't look like this.

Any other notes/Status: My favorite soccer team was wildly upset today and I'm feeling a bit sad about it. But I perk up when I think that by day 30 of this trip I will barely be able to recall it.

Today's Entry:

I have never been sure about Borromini's forced perspective gallery at the Palazzo Spada. Among all the brilliant and elegant works of renowned architecture Borromini created, this silly columned gallery, where a trick of perspective makes a hallway look large and long, with a full sized statue at the end, when really its all short and stunted, always seemed too much of nonsense for me to get excited about. It's all just a trick like they had in the haunted shack at Knotts Berry Farm when I was a kid, a place where water ran uphill, and a person got bigger or smaller depending on what side of a room they were on. So I never really considered going to Palazzo Spada.

Then, 30 days into this trip it occurred to me:

1. I liked the haunted shack at Knotts Berry Farm!

2. Borromini, bad tempered and cranky and suicidal does not have a charming reputation. And yet, he made things holy, he made things effortlessly lovely, and he made things whimsical. Whimsical! I do not think the full story has been adequately reported on this guy. I mean, he made a trick hallway! How could I not honor Borromini and his whimsical trick hallway?

3. I have been going on some about Rome as an amusement park. And here it is practically explicit.

So we popped over for a look.

It was fun. The Palazzo was beautiful too, full of elegant touches, playfulness, and elegant little gardens. It was easy to travel back in time there 400 years. And I learned for sure that on a good day, at least, Borromini would have been a delight. 



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