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We were lucky with the weather in Ireland as it didn’t rain much while we were there. However, at around 15C, it felt quite cool and there was the sense that summer was ending. When we returned to Rome it was around 30C, and apart from the daylight hours getting shorter, it is still summer weather here.
With the heat, we were glad to accept an invitation to go to the seaside south of Rome for the day. Beaches in Italy are crowded at this time of the year and it was a far cry from the deserted beaches in Ireland. However, the warm sea and cloudless skies compensated for the activity on the beach if you can call lying in the sun an activity! I was pleased to see five or so young men with a little baby. They all took turns amusing the baby including all pretending to sleep so that the baby would sleep as well. Several of them actually did fall asleep while the baby remained wide awake.
I was reminded of walking on the beach in Goa when I saw a couple of fishermen using the same type of circular nets. I had always thought that these were specific to India but apparently not. Not too many fish being caught but I think the men were enjoying the activity more than the catch.
On the way back to Rome, we passed by Castel Gandolfo where the Popes traditionally spend their summer vacation. Papa Francesco has decided to open up the papal villa at Castel Gandolfo to the public so we stopped to see if we could visit. Indeed the gardens are open to the public but one has to pay a hefty fee to go in and tickets can only be booked through the Musei Vaticani in Rome. So much for making the gardens accessible to the public though I do believe that if Papa Francesco had his way, it would really be free for all! Castel Gandolfo itself is a little village on Lake Albano so instead of enjoying the gardens we enjoyed a meal in a restaurant with a wonderful view overlooking the lake as you can see from this photo.