ATTN Lettori! This is part of the required blogs for Writing Rome. Feel free to read it, but it mostly covers what I posted previously.
Upon entering the Ancient Roman Forum, everything I had dutifully learned for class fled my mind in an excited frenzy. I hastily tried to recall the ‘blueprint’ of the forum that I memorized for the midterm and successfully placed the Basilica Julia and Basilica Aemilia, breathing a sigh of relief. From there, I slowly pieced together the Forum as we walked from the north to the south end, and naming the ruins became a smooth process. Seeing the Basilica of Constantine and Maxentius, our ‘adopted site’ on a western hill of the Forum was awesome. Despite the fact that it was closed for a literature festival, the massive size did not fail to make an impression on me (again).
Despite the fencing and demarcation in the forum, I didn’t feel like I was forced in any direction, but I did feel like a stranger. None of the people in the forum today know what it would be like to live in Ancient Rome; therefore we are all strangers to what we saw around us. Despite vague ideas from various documentations, but there is no way to truly grasp what that entailed, so I felt the best thing to do was ‘admire’ instead of ‘associate with.’ For example, the fact that some of the monuments, like the Temple of Vesta, still have remnants of the original floor is unreal. Seeing that really took my breath away, because the monument was no longer an image in a PowerPoint, it was real and right in front of me.