Very excited at this point. How lovely to be able to seat on that bench and just reflect on what was (inspired by the arena)
From the Vatican, the next thing that comes to mind when in Rome is the Colloseo. Britney Spear’s Pepsi commercial suddenly comes to mind. Of course that is on top of the Gladiators movie, 300,  and all those bulky warrior costume-designed films that are plagued with blood, sweat, and deaths.
Very excited to cross the street
 It was monumental. Ginormous. It could only be built by a wealthy nation.
Colloseo Facade

 

The largest ever built in the Roman Empire. It is considered one of the greatest works of Roman architecture and Roman engineering (W).

The long line to the ticket booth– from outside to inside
“Bleachers” for 50,000 spectators
Intricate entrances
Big walls. Strength. Power. Symbolism
Close-up of ridges where the “fight” happens

A tour group from where I happened to eavesdrop some trivias and insider history knowledge. We were resting and they decided to camp under that arc. Let’s just say I was just sitting in their class.

Inside it, behind those serried ranks of arches and columns, Romans for centuries cold-bloodedly killed literally thousands of people whom they saw as criminals, as well as professional fighters and animals (BBC).
With that clear blue sky as the backdrop of the coliseum, how can this day not be beautifully perfect?

 

View from one of the entrances.

 

The Colosseum, or the Coliseum, originally the Flavian Amphitheatre. How magical the sunrays permeating through the windows are.
Yes, the tourist count doesn’t die. At all. Any day.
Goose bump-inducing size and event. Perspective from the stage looking at the thousands of spectators
Spectators’ point of view. Imagine men and animals brawling for dear life, for others entertainment and bets
Right side: where contenders enters/ exits, depending on their fate (victor or corpse)
View from the second floor of the Colloseo

 

The Colloseo from afar

 

Real Romans (in costume) up for pictures for some Euros

 

Old (greyed out) couples traveling old together #heartwarming #goal

You can’t come to Rome for the first time and not see the Colloseo. But you can come in and not hire a tour guide. We did not, but we heard what they have to say.

One guide posed a question if the Colosseum deserves to be one of the wonders of the world.

What do you think?

Well, she thought and I agree that it must not. It was a venue for human killings without justifiable reasons other than for entertainment of the social elites, that is why.

It is not wonderful if it did not promote humanity and global ingenuity, right? Nothing is wonderful about deaths in vain.

But the tour was a lesson in human history and culture.

Social stratification. Slavery. Greed. Survival of the fittest. One arena can explain all that.

It was a tragic recall of history but awe-striking at the same time. The magnanimity of heart of the people fighting for survival– you can only admire men of purposeful courage.

What do you do when the only chance to be freed from slavery is to agree to risk dying in the coliseum (and get out a winner and alive), so the masters have something to watch and gamble over?

The colloseo was another live history class for me (not a history person that I am). I appreciate the past more this way– with actual visuals. You can almost feel, smell, hear, and see what might actually have happened there, from imagination. They come alive.

Though the past is a good anchor, I am a fervent believer of the present and the future. Seize the day, instead. All right?

The streets of Rome, next! #WaitForIt!