Month: March 2015

Rome – Bibliobar

When we were in Rome recently we came across this outdoor café called Bibliobar. It’s beside the Tiber and just north of Castel Sant’Angelo.

This bar serves coffee and sandwiches and also has a free library. So you can take a book off the shelf and read it while enjoying your coffee. Also, nearby are some outdoor stalls selling second hand books.

Bibliobar Rome



Perth, Queens Gardens – Peter Pan

We just happened to be walking through Queens Gardens in East Perth on the weekend, and stopped to photograph its famous literary sculpture.

The Peter Pan bronze sculpture in the centre of the garden was installed in 1927, and is a replica of Sir George Frampton’s original Peter Pan sculpture that is in Kensington Gardens, London.

Apparently, J. M. Barrie, the author of Peter Pan, lived near Kensington Gardens when he wrote his first Peter Pan story in 1902. Barrie commissioned the sculpture which was erected in Kensington Gardens in 1912.

Peter Pan statue Queens Gardens Perth

Cottesloe, Australia – Sculpture by the Sea

We are fortunate to have in our neighbourhood every year in March the wonderful Sculpture by the Sea exhibition. Sculpture from all round the world is displayed at Cottesloe Beach in the city of Perth.

This year’s exhibition included a sculpture with a book theme. By Danish sculptor, Keld Moseholm, the sculpture Is This a Step Forward, could be seen as a warning to not get too engrossed in a book. The three bulbous figures appear to be reading books as they step out over a precipice.

Sculpture by the Sea Cottesloe

Secret Rome – Berardi’s Water Clock

An example of the kind of thing covered by Secret Rome, mentioned in the previous blog, is Berardi’s Water Clock on the Via del Gesu. As mentioned already, some of the listings in this book have limited opening hours, and this clock can only be seen if the doorway to the Palazzo Berardi is open and can then only be viewed from the street. The clock was designed in 1870 by Dominican priest, Giovan Battista Embriaco

Also mentioned in Secret Rome is another water clock by Embriaco, which is on the Pincio and can be seen at anytime. You can see more about these water clocks at our travel blog.

Water clock Rome via Gesu

Rome – Anglo American bookshop

When we are in Rome we always call into the Anglo American bookshop at via della Vita, not far from the Spanish Steps. They have a good selection of maps and guidebooks in English.

This time we picked up a copy of Secret Rome published by JonGlez. It’s a good guide book for those making their third or fourth visit to Rome and wanting to check out some sites not listed in most other guides. We found it to be useful, despite the fact that many of the places can only be visited by appointment or have limited opening hours.

Anglo American Bookshop Rome

Ides of March – Rome

Shakespeare in his play, Julius Caesar, made the Ides of March famous. On the Ides of March 44BC, Julius Caesar was assassinated.

The ides occur in every month of the Roman calendar, usually on the 13th, but sometimes as in March on the 15th. This was a date, determined by the occurrence of the full moon, and associated with particular religious observances.

On a recent trip to Rome we visited the Largo di Torre Argentina. This square-shaped piazza is made up of the ruins of four Roman temples and part of Pompey’s theatre. It was in a section of the theatre that the assassination of Julius Caesar took place. An information board at the side of the archaeological ruins has a map showing where the murder took place.

Largo Argentina Rome

Angels and Demons – Rome – 8

Pope Clement IX was so impressed with the Bernini angels on the Sant’Angelo bridge, that he ordered that two of them be replaced with copies done by Bernini’s pupils. These were exposed to the wind and rain, while the originals were kept in Bernini’s studio. In 1729, Bernini’s grandson gave the two angels to the church of Sant’Andrea delle Fratte. You can have a close up look at these angels, as the church, which is not far from the Spanish Steps, is open every morning and late afternoon.

Bernini angel Sant'Andrea delle Fratte