Moving Christmas

Christmas for children in Rome used to mean Piazza Navona. That was when the square was packed to overflowing and when the smell of candy floss and roast chestnuts filled the air. Those were the days when the market stalls were stacked with terracotta crib figures instead of plastic imitations. Then, gradually, the Christmas market was transformed into a sanitised version of its old self and the magic, mystery and excitement drained away. Now the centre for Christmas has shifted from the historic centre to Auditorium Parco della Musica (or heaven forbid IKEA at the Porta Romana shopping mall). In the Flaminio part of town the Auditorium is more accessible, more spacious, more functional, although not quite the same. But look up at the night sky from the central open-air theatre and you