Thursday, February 17, 2011

Fermi Problem Thursday: When in Rome?

I know it isn't Friday, but I have this Fermi problem that has been bugging me for the last 8 months. I thought that maybe if I wrote it down here I would at least feel better and maybe even get an answer.

This past summer I was lucky enough to spend a week touring around Italy. Of course the first place I stopped was Rome. One of the neatest things about this city is that the modern is wonderfully mixed in with the old. 2000+ years of human history in 496.3 square miles. After getting off the train and meeting up with Agent Utah, we decided our first stop was some gelato. As we were walking I believe I said something along the lines of "Yeah, I just really want to sit and drink wine and eat gela... Holy !*@$ that's the Colosseum!" We did go one to find both great food and great gelato.

On our way home (after spending a good 45 minutes having some wine outside of the Pantheon before we realized what it was) we tripped across the Trevi Fountain. The saying goes that if you throw a coin in the fountain you will be ensured a return to Rome. There was even a movie made about it, though it was more about romance than travel. An estimated 3,000 Euros are thrown into the fountain each day. If this saying is true, what is going to happen to the number of people going on Roman Holidays? Rome had an estimated 8 million visitors in 2010, assumeing many of those people traded some now-wet Euros for the guarnetee of a return, what will the tourist population be like in 2050? 2100?

I, for one, will be returning one day and throwing yet another coin into the fountain!

1 comment:

  1. I haven't been to Rome or anyplace in Italy.....yet but it's definitely on my list. I love the movie Roman Holiday. Can you throw a coin in the fountain for me next time you're there?