Well dear reader: this is it. Last day in Rome. I’m sad but also happy to be going home to New Zealand. I’ve really loved my 2.5 months here and experiencing the Italian way of life. I’ve enjoyed the job and working with a great team of people, who are really dedicated to reducing poverty around the world.

So on my last day in Rome, I decided to take it easy and go to the places I really like and do what I like to do. So that meant plenty of walking for a start. I started off around 8.00am and walked into Testaccio (about a 15 minute walk). I visited my favourite cafe for a cappuccino and jambella (large doughnut dusted with sugar). I then visited the local markets, browsed around and ended up buying a cute little dog-decorated shopping bag for Euro 5.00.

Then the French lady I work with came around to my apartment and I gave her what I reckon happens a lot with international consultants –  a food parcel. All the stuff I didn’t get through: some bottles of wine (that was hubs who left these behind); pasta, rice, vegetables and so on. In return, she helped to pack my red handbag in one of the suitcases. Since she goes on a lot of missions, she is an old hand at packing strategically. I was stressing out a bit that I wasn’t going to fit everything into my two suitcases. The green one hasn’t quite carked it, so it’s going back to NZ. Why toss it when I might get one more trip out of it!

We then went to Campo de’ Fiori (near Piazza Navona) to sit at a cafe, chat, have a cappuccino and I had (another) jambella. Then she dropped me at the hairdresser and after that, I scoffed a Diavola pizza, which is supposed to be hot and spicy but isn’t really. For my sins, I then walked to the Colosseum (about 30 minutes) and did a circuit of this stadium, then headed to Circo Massimo. I live opposite Circo Massimo (Circus Maximus) but, in the months I’ve been here, I’ve never walked on the huge field that was once the largest stadium in Ancient Rome. So I did two circuits (another 30 minutes or so) and then walked up the 30+ steps that lead to Via del Circo Massimo. Up the hill a bit more and I came back to the apartment to do some more stressing over packing.

I’m not a great packer. Hubs usually packs the suitcases because we travel together. I’m sure I have wasted space but just so long as all my stuff makes it back home, I don’t really care how badly it’s packed. I then had a Skype chat with hubs and he showed me Zeph and Zsa Zsa, lazing in front of the log fire. Yep, good old NZ – it’s October already and we need a log fire.

So five days home and then it’s off to Malaysia to train Knowledge Management consultants for a Malaysian company; then on to Thailand. As you’re reading this, I’m already in transit – Rome to Dubai; Dubai to Bangkok; Bangkok to Sydney; Sydney to yippee – Christchurch. Mad eh? Well, my great mate has told me to chill out, watch some movies and enjoy (she likes long haul travel, whereas I get fidgety and bored after 5 hours or so).

Adieu dear reader. Until the DailyOxford becomes the DailyOxford again (and not the Daily Rome) – I leave you with photos of Zeph and Zsa Zsa lazing, along with the cappuccinos, jambella and pizza I scoffed on my last wonderful day in the world’s most amazing city – Roma.

Wonderful Italian cappuccinos and a jambella (well, two of them) - basically a large doughnut rolled in sugar. Yum!

Really, this is the first whole pizza I've scoffed since being in Rome. It's Diavola - hot and spicy.

Zeph is on the right. Both of them are lazing on their cushions in front of the log fire.

Zeph: not too happy to be woken up for a Skype chat.

Hubs with Zeph (who was listening intently to me saying I would be home very soon).

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