Football, fountains and blossoms

Rome tends to chaos, but it’s beautiful. Early spring has sneaked up on us overnight this year, and the trees aligned along many streets in the city are in full white, pink and fuscsia bloom.

Footbal is very much part of the city life. It’s the lingua franca of the early morning required stop for a quick cappuccino at the local bar, especially on Mondays. I learned early on that a knowledge of the weekend games is a godsend to navigate the social small-talk fug of Monday blues.

So it wasn’t such a surprise that the municipal anti-establishment junta finally capitulated and decided that the Roma AS football club would be allowed to build its own stadium in the city. The party are staunchly anti-cement and anti-any-new-development projects and had stubbornly nixed the whole idea from day one. They were brought to their political senses last month when the whole Roma cheering section engaged in heated chants and insults against them during a match, and the Roma radio station started attacking their party.

Dan Meis Roma stadium project

A good three quarters of the powerful taxi lobby runs on Roma radio frequency, and the drivers were incensed that Ms Mayor – who supported their anti-Über seven-day strike – was denying them a stadium.

So thanks to football, we have at least one new city project creeping forward, which should create some very needed  new jobs.

More positive football news. We get invaded from time to time by hordes of drunken fans from other countries (getting drunk is not part of mainstream Italian culture), and in 2015 the fans of a Dutch club went on a rampage. They fought police for hours in the historical center, destroyed storefronts and smashed hundreds of bottles on a number of priceless monuments, including the beautiful Barcaccia fountain in Piazza di Spagna.

Viale Tiziano Bernini fountain

Bernini Fontana delle Api

Now the good news: a Dutch group of individuals and associations set up a special fund and recently donated the sum of € 100,000 to the city of Rome to try to make amends for the disgrace. The Barcaccia had already been repaired, but the symbolism is strong and welcome anyway. The city will use the funds to restore two other Bernini fountains, one that sits in the center of Piazza Barberini – the fountain of the “Bees”, and the other in the central verdant section of viale Tiziano, in a mainly residential quarter of the city.

Spring is looking good.

Photos: blossoms: 14thcountry.com; cappuccino: en.wikipedia.com; Roma AS stadium project : http://www.meisstudio.com; Viale Tiziano Bernini fountain: http://www.roma2oggi.it; Bernini Fontana delle Api: http://www.arte.it  

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This entry was posted in Blogging, Cultural, Environment, Italy and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Football, fountains and blossoms

  1. We wish Spring was here. We just had 8 inches of snow on Tuesday.

  2. Barb Knowles says:

    What an interesting article! I remember the Dutch debacle and it’s good that they are doing something about it. In typical American fashion, it took me a sentence or two to realize that you were talking about “soccer.” I need to start traveling again. The photo of the flowering tree is beautiful and the news of infrastructure development is a boon to the economy, I’m sure. I’m madly getting ready for work but wanted to comment on this before I leave. So if my comment is disjointed, you know why 🙂 Have a wonderful day (realizing that you are already having it while many time zones away I’m just up) ❤

  3. BeautLotus says:

    I love these vignettes of life in Rome. It sounds so different from the Sydney experience which is all about new builds and construction EVERYwhere.

  4. Hi Bea,

    Thanks, as always, for giving us a glimpse into “life in Rome.” I especially like the picture of the pink flowering tree.

    As for us, here in New England, we are just getting over a late season blizzard. So much for spring! 🙂

    Nancy

  5. sittingpugs says:

    What do you suppose is a more accurate portrait of a nation’s people? Their behavior in a foreign country or how they treat their own countrymen? A bit of both? Being on one’s best behavior abroad doesn’t excuse jerkish attitudes at home?

    • Bea dM says:

      I don’t think it’s about nations, it’s about individuals. I have noticed though that people from staider cultures enjoy letting their hair down somewhat when visiting more … ebullient places. Football violence wherever is senseless. Besides, I don’t know about you, but I behave the same wherever I am 🙂

  6. MarinaSofia says:

    It looks beautiful – I have the feeling spring has come very suddenly everywhere this year.

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