Heather in Rome

The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page. - St. Augustine

Friday, October 14

The Group Makeup and a Vespa Ride!

I've been meaning to outline the group that I am living with. There are 20 students and 4 full-time staff members. First, there are 7 Americans: Reggie, 25, San Diego, engineer; Janelle, 25, Seattle, law firm secretary; Marco, ~27, Boston, barber; Michelle, 23, New York, theatre; Chris, 26, New York, Franciscan volunteer youth worker; Monty, 23, Riverside, music student; and myself. Then there are 3 French: Carole, 22, engineering graduate; Jean-Francois, 30, management accountant; and Yves (sounds like Eve, he's a guy), 23, nursing graduate. Two from Indonesia: Alvin, 25, engineering graduate and Fransiska, ~25, secretary and English tutor. Two from Australia: Teresa, 26, Sydney, NET volunteer and WYD worker and Therese, 25, Melbourne, public relations. The rest: Paul, 32, Ireland, engineer; Yvonne, 26, Germany, WYD worker and human resources graduate; Ramzi, 34, Lebanon, technical sales; Matteo, 23, Italy, communications graduate; Anne Marie, 22, Netherlands/Holland, phyiscal therapist graduate; and Anna, 29, Slovakia, child care.
So that's the group. Everyone is very different, but we have a common desire to grow in the faith and that unites us.

More related to daily life. I'm getting up between 7 and 7:30 am every day and it is rough sometimes. I've been getting to bed earlier than at home so I'm getting close to 8 hours of sleep each night, but not always. We started classes this week so we've practiced Italian a few times, listened to lectures on living in a community and how to follow Jesus and how to present one's faith story in a way that gets to the heart of the matter. Overall, the classes have been very good and entertaining. This week the relics of St. Margaret Mary, who is the person Jesus revealed the image of His Sacred Heart to, were in Rome so we went to Mass at St. Peter's (wow!) with them there and then invited people in the Square to visit the relics and pray in front of Jesus at the youth center.

Let me take a side note to talk about St. Peter's. We were only there for 2 hours maybe, but it was amazing. We are going back today and I am looking forward to it. I think I could wander in there for hours, staring at the magnificance of it all. It blows my mind to ponder how a church that large and beautiful was created hundreds of years ago without cranes and other machinery. And Michaelango's Pieta took him 2 years to create. Two years spent working on one piece! Such dedication.

Well, I'd better wrap this up. One final thing, yesterday I got to ride on the back of a Vespa. When I got here in Rome I figured I would have to ride one to complete my year in Rome, and I've already gotten to. It was so crazy! Passing cars, riding people's bumpers. It was wild. I would not want to drive here. But the good thing about the drivers getting to do whatever they want is that the pedestrians get to do the same. Jaywalk to your heart's content, cross on the red. Don't worry though, Mom, I'm being safe. Hehe.


  • At 11:40 PM, Blogger The Michael said…

    Hi Heather, I have a question. What language are your classes in?

  • At 7:21 PM, Blogger Heather said…

    English. Once we had a priest who spoke French, but it was translated rapidly so it wasn't boring like I thought it would be.

  • At 3:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Heather. I love being able to keep up with your life on this blog. How do you get along with the other members of your class? How are you finding the food? Did you get someone to send you a Breaking Bread? I was willing to send it, but would be totally useless in the guitar chord department. Keeping you in my prayers. Love and Hugs,
    Mary (and Andrew, too)


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