Just a quick note from the future, to let you know what it is like to be in Rome (Italy) in 2020. I’m writing this for you, because it’s only with your help that this is going to happen.
Transportation in Rome finally works. Amazing right? There is no need to wait 45 minutes for a bus. There is no crowded metro or bus. There are no people yelling on the phone just because there is already noise on the background.
I remember once I had to wait for a shuttle bus to go to Fiumicino airport. The bus was supposed to pick me up at 3.55pm, but the man who was selling me tickets said that the bus started its journey full of people and so it couldn’t stop where I was supposed to take it. I thought, WHAT? I mean, it’s a bus for the airport, and so it’s easy to understand that it’s very important to take it at precise minute because I have to take a flight.
But no worries, this happened in 2012, but now everything is ok. People in Rome used to say: we move by car because there is no way to know if the bus or the metro will be on time. So the city was full of cars everywhere. But in 2020 everyone is using public transportations, all electric, no noise, no smog. Especially during summer, people are using bikes and not scooters. The city center is closed to traffic and you can walk without fear.
People have always been nice in Rome, but in 2020 they are even nicer. Meaning they speak English with no problem at all, and if you are a tourist you feel at home. When I was there in 2012 I saw people acting rude with foreigners. And I was feeling guilty because I’m an Italian living abroad myself, so I know what’s like to have difficulties with the local language.
In 2020, Italians are nicer with foreigners, always with the same charm that Americans or Germans love so much. We, as Italians, learn some English, and it doesn’t hurt at all.
Well, who doesn’t love Italian food? In 2020 this is getting better and better. Why? Simple! Italians have learned the importance of organic and natural food for everyone. No more crap food just to make some money. If you have good food you can ask for even more money, because tourists are going to pay to eat amazing stuff. In Rome, there are no more “touristic” places, but just old and original “hosterie”.
In 2012 I ate pizza that was not the REAL one, just because they wrote it was the “original” one and I believed them. In 2020 when you go to a “pizzeria” you always have a good and real pizza, no matter what, because Italians care about the food that makes everyone dream. Italian food is the best food in the world? Yeah, in 2020, for sure!
Rome is the first city where accommodations are awesome. Really, nobody is going to hotels anymore, just old people or politicians, or diplomats…you know that kind of freak? Romans decided to give tourists an amazing experience because they opened up their houses for foreigners.
When I was in Rome in 2012, I stayed in a hotel. It was listed as 3 stars. I mean, apart from the fact that I have never understood how they decide about stars, the hotel was without any soul. Carpets on the floor, bathrooms like a train station, internet points on each floor, and you could even smoke in the halls. Are you kidding me? It was a bad experience really. In 2020, you can book an amazing room in the city center for the same price, you meet interesting local people, and everything is perfect.
Somehow hotels are so old style right now. There are some nice ones, but is it nicer to meet new people or to have a double extra size king whatever 5 star hotel bed? In 2020, in Rome, human relationships are more important than the status of having money to afford a luxury hotel.
Ok guys, thanks for reading my letter from the future. I wanted to help people dream about a better future for the Italian capital and to be ACTIVE in order to let this happen. Don’t only complain about things, be awesome and creative, and change something in this world. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and change it it’s going to require even more time, but let’s start today.
All images courtesy of Giulia Depentor