An anonymous tourist was caught on camera scaling a famous fountain in Italy to get some water.
Footage of the incident reportedly happened at the historic Trevi Fountain (or “La Fontana di Trevi”) in Rome and was filmed by a fellow tourist named Lex Jones in July.
According to Jones, the brazen act was especially shocking since the rules are posted pretty clearly for visitors.
“There were signs all over saying that’s not allowed,” Jones recently told Storyful. “I was just like, wow, this is crazy so I started videoing it.”
In the now-viral clip, an unidentified woman can be seen wearing a blue baseball cap and matching T-shirt as she climbs across the fountain’s stone façade. Once she reaches the nearest waterfall, the woman leans forward and fills a plastic water bottle, immediately capturing the attention of multiple stunned onlookers.
A uniformed guard quickly intervenes, and the two exchange words, but the video is filmed from too far away to hear what’s being said. It also ends before we see whether the woman is fined, arrested or just simply escorted off the premises.
The footage went viral on social media before making its way to the news. In the process, it stoked the ire of countless viewers.
“I hope she got a hefty fine for being so ‘smart,’” said one commenter.
“Love the reaction on her face like she didn’t do anything wrong,” added someone else.
Much like the U.S., Europe has been facing record-breaking temperatures lately, leading to other “thirsty” tourist videos going viral this summer.
In July, an American tourist named Brenna (@br3nnak3ough) was visiting Barcelona, Spain, when she claimed that Europe “doesn’t believe in water,” which is why she “chugs” it whenever she can find it. (In reality, Europeans tend to buy sparkling bottled water instead of flat water, which Americans find less thirst-quenching.)
It remains unclear whether the tourist at the Trevi Fountain was looking to grab some free drinking water or if she simply wanted to bottle it up as a keepsake. Either way, though, it was clearly a bad call.
According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, the Trevi Fountain is a “late Baroque masterpiece” that dates back to the 18th century and is now considered a treasured landmark. Legend has it that visitors who toss a coin into its waters will one day return to the city of Rome, which is why the fountain is now full of so many coins — and, therefore, unsafe for drinking.
As for what happened to the Trevi trespasser? That also remains unclear. CNN reports that tourists can be fined up to 500 euros for merely entering the fountain, but it’s unknown whether or not this was upheld.
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