Even in Rome warm and gloriously sunny Sundays in November come with parsimony. I decided to spend the afternoon playing ‘spot the potential Sabbatini’ in his home turf of the Trionfale quarter. I snapped and snapped and snapped.
No Trionfale V of course. No Casa Economica with the crazy abstracted pediment. It is an illusion after all. Gone. The stuff of legends. The ridiculous first-world obsession of an academic spending three months in Rome while on paid sabbatical.
And yet… Even the hardest of urban explorers needs a break. As I was sipping the millionth delicious cappuccino at a nearby caffe and was browsing through the photos I had taken so carelessly during the day, I saw this:
A crazy moment of intuition? Simple despair for a month-long search that had delivered nothing? Grabs the iPad, you fool. Fly over the 3D map. Just check. Maybe. Just maybe.
And for a mere moment, or ten, I felt like an excited child who discovered that their favourite toy that they thought had been lost forever was simply hiding, timidly, conspiratorially, among the other, less loved ones. Trionfale V. And yet, it exists, in the most perfect state, currently under restoration, to be revealed in the coming days. I shall be there.