We were met with a light rain as we walked out of our hotel. It was our sixth day in Rome and this was the first rain we had seen on our trip. The rain had brought cooler weather, which after the usual ninety degree heat, was a relief for us.

I was confident that we would be able to purchase some umbrellas at one of the many kiosks which lined the narrow cobbled streets.

And sure enough, within ten minutes I was sporting a small yellow umbrella, and my husband a blue one.

It was when we passed some significant ruins close to the forum that we noticed two burly gladiators taking refuge from the rain in a covered doorway.

These gladiators, of course were men dressed in gladiator costumes. They make their living by posing with tourists who are eager to have their pictures taken with ferocious looking killers.

These, and other interesting characters can be easily found near the forum, coliseum, and other historically significant sites.

The cost to have a picture taken with them is around ten euros, which then, came to about fourteen dollars.

I could feel the poor gladiators discontent as we approached. Clearly, the rain was putting a damper on business.

We had just barely passed them when we heard a gladiator loudly address us from behind.

“Picture with your wife for seven euros,” he yelled at us. The resourceful chap had dropped the price on account of the rain. No doubt, was hoping we would jump at the chance to save three euros.

We did not stop, nor did we look back.

After a few moments, seeing that we were not interested, he snarled out his final offer to my husband.

…..“Five euros for a picture,”


…..”and I’ll kill your wife for free.”