So, today is actually my second day of this pilgrimage, but I didn't have luck with the Internet connection yesterday, so I'm going to work a day behind. Here are my thoughts, from Day 1:
1st Day: Rome
I’m writing this post suspicious of why I am not more tired than I am, especially since I’ve had a grand total of two hours of sleep since Saturday. So please excuse me if the grammar isn’t correct or I ramble in.
You know what? I won’t. Let’s keep it short. I need to go to sleep, otherwise I’m in trouble all day tomorrow.
Here are some random thoughts about the first day of this pilgrimage:
- Landing in Rome, Italy was awesome. I could not – and still cannot – believe Kristen and I are in this world-famous city. Aside from all of the great Catholic sites we’ll visit I love history and especially love learning about ancient Rome.
- It was hilarious to watch Kristen and I – who don’t know a lick of Italian – try to order lunch from a lunch bar. “Do you speak English?” we asked. “Only a little”, he replied. We then pointed at our lunch selections. He came really close to picking out what we wanted. We ate it, anyway.
- We celebrated a private Mass, with just our tour group, at a St. Mary’s located about three blocks from St. Peter’s. It was a good kickoff.
- I’m typing this blog post at about 10 pm Rome time, sitting on a warm night, on a chair on our balcony at The Michelangelo. Oh, by the way, over the top of my computer screen is the lit-up St. Peter’s Basillica. Absolutely ridiculous. Pictures to follow in the coming days.
- Though we’ll be visiting St. Peter’s Square soon, we had some free time today and walked over there. You can see lots of pictures and watch lots of videos about it, but it’s powerful to be there, especially with about a 60-foot tall picture of St. John Paul II.
- We checked off “get gelato” today. So good.
- From my balcony, I’m listening to two guys talk to each other in Italian. There’s something just “authentic” about the Italian language.
- Sleeping on an international flight is nearly impossible. We’ve mastered flight and managed to make it as uncomfortable as possible.
- We have no idea how to use an electric converter, and fried it the first day. Nothing like almost burning down your hotel room to get things kicked off.
- The trip started off feeling a little weird. Kristen and I noticed no one whom we felt looked like us, either in age or attitude.
- By the end of the night, that didn’t matter. We’re making great friends with these folks. I listened to three stories, at my table alone, of how they felt called to come to Medjugorje and had a hard time explaining it to their friends and family. We’re in good company. They confirmed what I feel: I’m on this trip for a reason.