Hey thanks everyone for getting the new book! You helped get it to #1 in its category!! 🙂 It’s officially released now, and you can get the paperback version if you want that too. 🙂
Jim Gaffigan Comedy Special
Make sure you check out his new special on Netflix. This guy cracks me up…
Daily Photo – The Pantheon
Here’s the Pantheon in Rome. It’s hard to believe this building is 2,000 years old! I edited this single RAW photo using Aurora HDR 2019. This is an old photo, from probably over eight years ago. I still have SO MANY unprocessed photos, and it’s fun to go back to them now and process them using new tools.
Okay, so then we left Qatar and flew to Italy. It was a fun flight for the family because they used points to upgrade to business class. I sat back in Economy (which I certainly don’t mind), but they had a ball up there! The flight attendant, at least, felt sorry for me and said she would bring back some of the “good” wine. Well, that was pretty exciting but then she never brought me any at all, which made it even worse, somehow.
Anyway, we got to Rome and the kids were able to see the last stage of the trip. It was actually kind of cool, introducing the kids to four huge religions. We started with Buddhism in Thailand, then Hinduism in India, then Islam in Oman and Qatar, then finally Christianity in Italy!
We actually started the tour in Vatican City and Saint Peter’s Basilica. I guess technically that’s a different country! But it was incredible…
In Rome, we stayed in the Boscolo Exedra, a place I mega-recommend. It’s centrally located and the whole family was very comfortable and happy there. The kids were getting QUITE spoiled by this point… week #4 in a row of lavish breakfast buffets!
After Rome, we took a train to Venice for a final few days of fun. We went to another Boscolo hotel there the Boscolo Venezia, Autograph Collection, which was also fabulous. You can see it in the below as well.
Well, WHAT a 30-day family trip. I hardly know how to express how grateful I was to spend so much time adventuring around with the family. I think it was a little Extreme for everyone, but I’m just getting them warmed up for next year! 🙂
italy Video Recap
And here’s all the videos from Italy!
Italy Photos Recap
One day we leased a few Fiat 500s to roam around the Roman countryside.
And here’s one of those country roads we drove down. This is not too far from the Appian Way, the very first road ever!
Inside the Vatican…
Here’s the kids with one foot in two different countries, Vatican City and Italy.
Scarlett drinks from an ancient aqueduct-fed fountain. Here’s a little secret: If you plug up the bottom, there is often a little extra hole where the water spurts out the top to make it easier to drink!
And finally we got to Venice where of course we took a gondola ride. Scarlett simply HAD to be in the front.
And we had a visit to the Doge’s palace to see this enormous painting by Tintoretto.
And there is our Boscolo Hotel there on the left. It was in a wonderful, quiet area of the city where mostly just locals live. It was great to be away from the touristy area for long, quiet, peaceful nights.
Daily Photo – Floating above Venice
I’ll tell you something embarrassing about this photo! But once I tell you, you’ll definitely be able to see it. Having said that, it’s a happy accident because I really like this photo! Anyway, this was a new quadcopter that I got after the other one crashed in India. So, I realized after I took this shot that I forgot to take off that little clear sticker that goes over the camera… yeah, you can see it now, can’t ya? But still, a cool effect it had! 🙂
Day 25 – Rome, Fiat 500 Adventures, and the Holy Catholic Vatican
We left Doha, Qatar after too-short of a trip and flew about six hours to Rome after I finally got my quadcopter out of being stuck in customs! I wasn’t allowed to fly it anywhere in Qatar or Oman, so they kept it at the airport for me. There’s always a confusing process to get it un-stuck! But everything turned out okay…
In Rome, we stayed right in the middle of the city at the Boscolo Exedra. It was another great hotel and a fun home base for the whole family. We did a ton of stuff here in the city. We got started with a full tour of Vatican City, which was even more impressive than I anticipated. Mind-blowing really! I’ve been to Rome four times but never visited the Vatican until this time. We had a private tour guide and it was definitely the way to go… Maria knew everything about this place and it was much more interesting than just blindly stumbling around.
And then we ended up in a 1962 and 1967 Fiat 500s to tour the Roman countryside. What a great way to explore… just about 10 km away was a beautiful lake… and, well you can see more in the video!
A Roman villa stands on a hill with the rest of teaming Rome behind it.
A Straight-up view from another area inside The Vatican.
Driving into the Roman countryside.
Exploring another room in The Vatican.
Exploring the massive halls inside and outside of Vatican City.
Having a quick flight over Rome with the DJI Phantom 3.
Her skirt was a little too skimpy to be let into The Vatican, so they stopped outside for some selfie action.
Scarlett got a new coat in Rome and she never takes it off.
Stopping with our Fiat 500s at a Roman aqueduct.
The amazing golden dome of the Basilica of Saint Peter.
The Basilica of Saint Peter is the longest church in the world and you can see the lengths of other churches represented on the floor.
The girls in front of the Coloseum.
The massive interior of the Basilica.
There are thousands of fountains all over Rome where the water is perfectly drinkable – one secret thing many have is if you plug the bottom, the water spurts out a little hole on top .
We took two Fiat 500’s out to explore the Roman countryside.
With one foot in both countries of Italy and Vatican City.
Here are a few pictures from the Colosseum… you know… that place in Rome where Russell Crowe killed Joaquin Phoenix? … which reminds me that I really should go watch more Joaquin Phoenix movies… he’s always good, especially when he plays a kinda crazy guy.
For whatever reason, I found it sneaky and fun to take pictures of nuns from behind in churches throughout Italy. I now have one with a black habit and a white habit. I look forward to getting the Emperor’s special redguard habit on a future trip. I tried two different DOFs, obviously.
I don’t do many things around the house, especially when it comes to things like painting, repair, and other silly things, like flushing. So it always impresses me to see someone that takes the time to actually get up and paint the ceiling, because if I were actually to do anything around the house, painting the ceiling would be way down the list (right after flushing).
And so here is another nicely painted ceiling in Rome…
Here is a tiny (actually it pretty small compared to most) church a few minutes away from the Colosseum. They don’t normally let the public in, but I sneaked in behind a wedding party that was there checking it out for an upcoming wedding. The priest that let us in assumed I was a photographer with the wedding. This is only one of many times I have been outright in-your-face deceptive with priests.