We are back from Europe, but I found this post waiting to be published. This was such a fun not-so-secret "secret" discovery... Enjoy!
Our apartment is located near Piazza Barberini, and just up the street from a super busy intersection and tunnel. The Romans drive as though they are in a race and it's a wonder anyone gets across the street in one piece. (This is a huge difference from Barcelona, where people respectfully wait their turns and pedestrians are allowed to cross before the mopeds, bikes and cars take over; we even saw a person assist a blind man across the street and then cross back over and go on his way. We haven't observed the same thing in Rome...)
Anyway, yesterday, Raf and I noticed a sign for an "underground bookstore" with free entry and were intrigued enough to investigate. It turns out there is a bookstore under the street, with four entry/exit points, so you can safely get across the street, or even diagonally across.
Not only did we get through the intersection without fearing for our lives or pulling Marlowe's arms out of their sockets, but we browsed a variety of books in many different languages, as well as an assortment of travel accessories and sundry items. And when we were done, we found our passage up to the sunlit Roman streets and wandered back into the fray...