“The Colosseum in Rome was one of my favorite places to see while we were in Italy. The structure was much larger then what I thought it would be considering how long ago it was built. It was mind-blowing to think how long it would have taken to construct a monument larger than a modern college football stadium using mostly manpower and whatever technology was available to the ancient Romans.
I found myself alternating between two states of mind as we climbed the steps, wandered through the pillars, and peered into the elaborate construction below the arena. Part of me could imagine the thrill of attending a show, seeing the death-defying performances, hear the roar of the crowd, and feeling the heart-pounding terror of watching a man succumb to the blade of another or meet his end in the jaws of a fierce beast.
It was like the attraction I feel when watching a horror movie, but so much more surreal considering these shows actually happened in antiquity.
Another part of me was ashamed to find myself fantasizing about witnessing such events knowing they often resulted in the deaths of people and some were forced to battle because they were prisoners or slaves.
But to me that was the attraction of the Colosseum, it was an inspiring monument of what mankind can accomplish with great power and vast resources, yet it’s also a sinister reminder of our darkest thrills and guilty pleasures. It’s a unique feeling and I would go again in a heartbeat.”