The Arrival (Week 1 Recap - Oct 1, 2018)
Updated: Nov 28, 2018
We landed in Rome just over a week ago. It’s crazy how long you can take to get settled when you really are trying to get settled vs just dropping in to briefly see a city. We have purchased things like paper towels and trash bags, figured out where to get diapers and formula, and tested out some Italian baby food. We bought our monthly transit passes. In normal travel life we’d have come and gone from a city by now but instead we’re just in week 1 of 6 and taking it slow.
The first week was a lot of unstructured time during the day which we spent eating pizza and buying toiletries followed by events in the evenings associated with my residency at the American University of Rome. We had a wonderful first dinner at Il Vascello during which it became immediately clear that our best dinners would be ones with high chairs, mushy foods, space to stand up, and dinner companions who like holding babies.
Rome is definitely a noisy and dirty city, but as a native New Yorker those things are familiar enough. What Rome has that New York doesn’t is endless pockets of gardens, piazzas, terraces, and little places for respite. Something I never considered pre-parenthood that has been really helpful: the playgrounds are also amazing here. They are that rubbery surface to cushion falls and the ones in our neighborhood have baby swings, but the best part is that there are dozens of toys and books that belong to the playground that make it possible for a kid pre-walking to have a great time. The downside is that we’ve already ruined half of WP’s pants and her lighter colored shoes because she is crawling everywhere and we’re accepting the trade off of dirty and happy vs clean and cooped up.
Jet lag has been mostly conquered. WP was sleeping through the night before we left. After a couple nights of wake ups where WP was hungry bc her body understandably thought it was mealtime, by end of week 1 we’re back to sleeping through the night. Really great blackout shades on our windows and bright sunny days helped a lot. And naps for the whole family. And espresso, for us.