Mad for…Agnes

A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots. (Marcus Garvey)

August 3, 2019–

Last fall, I went on a “bucket list” adventure to Italy with my mom and another mother daughter duo, Nancy Vanderkleed and Erin Ulrich. It was my first trip to Europe and I will never forget the experience. One of the reasons it turned out to be so memorable and meaningful was making the acquaintance of Agnes Crawford while we were in Rome. I absolutely LOVED Rome. The architecture, the art, the piazzas, the gelato…the crazy glorious churches. It was magical!

Agnes is a native of the UK who has lived in Rome for many years. My recollection is that she ended up in Rome because she married an Italian guy. She’s engaging and incredibly bright and articulate. I wish now that I had learned more about her. She speaks both English and Italian, which was completely awesome. Agnes gives tours for Understanding Rome and she has an educational background in architectural history, which made her particularly awesome as our guide.

Agnes met us outside the Colosseum on our first full day in Rome and she showed us around the architectural and historical wonder as well as a great deal of ancient Rome. We saw and learned about the history of the Roman Forum, as well as Palatine Hill. I wasn’t initially super excited about seeing some of this, however, Agnes was spectacular and I was drawn in. The next day she showed us around the Vatican, including the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica. She’s pictured above speaking to us in the nave of St. Peter’s. Being the Jesus girl that I am, I’m not entirely sure what she told us at that moment, because I was in a bit of a stupor from the fact that I was inside St. Peter’s Basilica. I definitely needed more time there than we had!

Today, Agnes is celebrating her birthday. I meant to send her a note when we returned home to thank her for helping to make our trip extra special, but neglected to do it. Therefore, I wanted to reach out and say HAPPY BIRTHDAY, AGNES! You are great at what you do and I am grateful for your time and expertise! I hope your friends and family spoil you on your special day!!

If you are ever in Rome for a visit and want to arrange a private tour, I highly recommend Agnes. Check out for more information!

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