Rome: This Ride is Closed for Refurbishment

In Rome, a few places have great appeal to anyone who visits, and but are not particularly “churchy”. At the top of the list is the Spanish Steps and Trevi Fountain. So the Spanish Steps have a church at the top, but no one goes there to see it. They go there to sit on the steps and watch the shoppers around the tres chic boutiques of the upscale neighborhood.

To me, both locations are kind of lackluster, because no matter what the time of day, they are both flooded with tourists, which kind of spoils their character. Sometimes you’re unlucky enough to realize you’ve gotten too close to one or the other, and now must navigate away from the crowd, lest you continue to stand shoulder-to-shoulder in the herd.

For the superstitious first-time visitor to Rome, the following revelation could lead to some true dismay: Trevi Fountain is Closed.

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Not forever, just for a while, I guess. Who knows how long fixing up a centuries-old fountain may take for the Romans? Perhaps if I’d paid closer attention to the signs surrounding the project I could tell you.

But that would have required that I dive even deeper into the crowd, which was still there despite the fountain being covered in scaffolding and looking totally drained and shabby. In the meantime, they’ve erected a walkway over the project for visitors to get a closer view of the work while it’s under way.

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I noticed, however, that someone had recovered all the coins from the bottom of the fountain pool which is now empty. Perhaps those coins (deposited over one’s shoulder as a down payment on the dream of return visit) have helped to fund the work.

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