I was asked numerous times what my favorite part of my trip to Rome was, even with just being home less than ten hours. In my exhaustion, I was unable to answer. What makes me able to answer this after just four hours of sleep, I have no idea.
Today was our final day in Rome. A portion of our group traveled to Ostencia. This is where St. Augustine and St. Monica lived. We had the opportunity to visit the remains of the city. There is a huge Roman city that was excavated. These ruins of the city are mostly destroyed, yet there are some structures that are still very well preserved to this day.
Today started with mass at St. James and John Basilica. It was the stational mass of the day. Most the people that attended this mass were English-speaking people, so it was nice to have a part of home here in Rome. Yes, I know that I’m on my way home in just a few days, but it was an enjoyable experience of being able to worship with other English-speaking people here in Rome. It truly reminded me of the universality of our church.
Today, seminary went to Assisi Italy. Assisi is about a 2 1/2-hour drive South of Rome. With a full house, we departed Sant’Anselmo at 7:30 this morning. Upon our arrival in Assisi, we had the opportunity to wander the town. I really like Assisi. The town is beautiful and reminds me of what I expected it will be to look like.
Today, we had the opportunity to either attend mass at St. Mary Major Basilica, or we could take the morning to rest. My body decided that I needed the rest, and so therefore I did not make it to mass this morning at St. Mary Major. I took the opportunity to sleep in and enjoy my morning without any rush.
I just can’t seem to get a handle on this waking up on time thing. Once again today, I was late at getting myself up and getting ready for the day. With five minutes till I needed to be ready to leave, I awoke disoriented and confused. I got out of bed as fast as I could and got dressed once I realized what time it was. I ran out the door and straight to the bus. Our first stop this morning at 7 AM was St. Peter’s Basilica for our seminary mass.
I guess one must accept the constant confusion around sleep when one travels internationally. Today, instead of waking up super early, I woke up late. I thought I had my alarm set for 6am, but instead, I woke at 7am… Needless to say, I was rather rushed this morning.
DARN JETLAG! It’s 3am over here and I’m wide awake! #NEEDSLEEP!!
— Andrew M. Boyd (@boydspace) March 5, 2017
Waking up at 3am is not fun. No matter what anyone tells me, this is not a fun way to spend one’s time traveling. Yet that is exactly what I experienced today. Have you ever had one of those moments where your body just says ‘get up!’ and you can’t figure out why? Under no circumstance should I have woken up at 3am here this morning, yet after five hours of sleep I was wide awake and ready for the day.
After a long night of travel with little to no sleep, we arrived in Rome at 1pm local time. Not surprisingly, the travel was probably the worst part of the trip for me. It started with a delayed flight in Pittsburgh, a very long taxing time at JFK, and a difficult passenger sitting next to me.
And so I sit here, preparing physically and mentally for the journey that is about to begin. I have packed, double and triple checked my bags and what I have packed, knowing that even though I tried, I still over packed; it always seems to happen that way when I travel.