I came to Rome nearly 10 years ago. It was my first time in Rome, and it was the *first Rome I visited.
All roads will take us to Rome; Rome was not built in one day; and when in Rome do as the Romans were 3 of the sayings that made me curious about this capital of the world since I was a child. As a student, every time I read about Rome I could not help but think of it as a place that defied space and time, change and innovation, permanence, movement and eternity. Yet, as I started walking its streets on that first time, I realized the languages I spoke did not offer enough adjectives to describe Rome.
Rome, Moscow and Mexico City remain my favorite cities in the world, and although there are many other magical places that also have my appreciation and admiration, these 3 cities represent everything that I like: they are living documents of history; they are cities whose present is vibrant and serves as a great connection between past and the possible future; they are cities that have inspired and hosted revolutions, and ideals; in these cities, the places locals and visitors appreciate dwell in the same, hence building a genuine experience . Essentially, these cities have walk hand in hand with their past and present. Rome, nonetheless, is my favorite city of all. Roma, ‘amoR’ (love in Spanish) when read backwards, need I say more?
My first visit to Rome happened in the times when cameras had not been replaced by smart phones. I remember how I prepared a playlist of Rome-proof songs in my Ipod and thus created the score for my adventures. For some strange circumstances, I lost my camera on that visit, so the only way to record my experience was with a pen and paper, with my pair of eyes, and the heart in my memory.
When I tell people about why I love Rome so much, I always say that it took me three days to realize I was in Rome. My eyes were suffering from history and information overload- there was so much to see and, conversely, to write about. I walked the city as if I had been asked to map its landmarks or, rather, the places where good memories can be made.
I promised to myself that the next time I came to Rome, I would come to revisit those places that caused me to think of stories, scenes of possibilities, and beginnings or ends of fantasies. There were texts that needed to become acquainted with the places where they were given birth. Thus, I needed to come again to make this communion happen.
My love for this city and the right my words have to meet their origins have brought me to Rome again, and it is in this occasion that I want to marry text and image, turning these experiences into a more lively memento of the relationship I have with this city.
In the link below you can download a collection of texts and images (by me) on my relationship with Rome.
Download / Descarga (iBook) Roma
Download / Descarga (PDF) ROME
* Istambul and Moscow are sometimes referred to as the 2nd and 3rd Rome, respectively.