Sometimes the inbetween events have more humor and excitement than the planned outing!
First I should share that at this writing, we have had two and a half days of Sr. Aquinata's teaching on the Rule. I have only one word for that...Amazing. If one of the sisters has a question, she only has to think a moment to create a list of quotes from the Rule with chapter and verse noted! Amazing! There is so muc to learn from here that Erin, Maribeth, and I are trying to catch all the bits of wisdom in our notes.
Last night we travelled to Santa Maria in Trastevere to pray with the Sant' Egidio lay community. The trip out for prayer was uneventful and we toured the Basilica in advance and enjoyed all the murals and mosaics. Then we had an hour to enjoy the piazza and surrounding alleyways. Prayer itself was also wonderful, surrounded by Italian chant it was enjoyable to add our own voices and psuedo Italian to the mix.
However, it was the trip home that was a blast! The priest that was explaining the Sant' Egidio community ran a bit long in answering questions and we had to hurry to meet the tram to take us to the train, except we hadn't turned in our prayer books or translator headsets yet! Father let us out through the back door of the Basilica (the front had already been bolted!) and we began our powerwalk back to the tram. Once on the little cement island between the roads going this way and that, we waited and waited and waited for the number 8 tram...that never arrived. By now we were going to miss our 9:59 PM train and would have to hope for another. Finally, Sr. Marcia et. al decided we should take the number 8 bus to the train...this did get us to Trastevere train station! Phew! And we knew God loved us because there was another train arriving at 10:24 PM. Yippee!
We discovered the wonders of the "Self-Service-Bar" while we waited for the train. These vending machines had it all: chocolate, soda, sandwiches, chips and even beer...and it was COLD. Maribeth had a cold orange drink, Erin got a coke, and I discovered a wonderful chocolate bar with whole hazelnuts! Other sisters tried new types of chips and drinks, one poor soul thought she had pushed the code for a ham sandwich but got a salmon and cheese sandwich instead! The Italians must have thought we had gone mad, we were laughing, trying each others snacks, exclaiming over the 'odd' items in the vending machine, and offering each other change to try something new. All this excitement did wear us down. After the long march up the hill, it was about 11:oo PM when we all headed to bed so we could be well reseted for Sr. Aquinata's last presentations today.