THE SISTINE CHAPEL

“The grandeur that was Rome.” The grandeur that is Rome.

A multi-faceted city. It has everything. Including the Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican, the Coliseum, the Trevi Fountain, the Roman Forum, Churches on every corner, the catacombs, Piazza Navona, ruins of old Rome, the Pantheon, the Spanish Steps, and on its streets buildings so old and beautiful they defy imagination.

The preceding a handful that quickly come to mind.

It was the summer of 1985. Absolutely the worst time to visit Rome. The heat unbearable. Romans leave the City for 1 or 2 months in the summer to escape the heat.

They go to the mountains and seashore.

I did not stay in Rome itself. I rented a villa for a month 42 miles outside of Rome in Livonia. Perched on a small hill on the Mediterranean with a private walkway to the beach.

My family and parents were with me. My mother turned out to be a blessing in disguise. She was the only one who spoke understandable Italian.

We had rented 2 cars. Visited Rome frequently. Generally one day in Rome, one day at the Villa. Sometimes took the train back and forth. An experience.

We took the wrong train back one day and ended up on Lake Como, once the Pope’s summer residence. Just as the sun was setting on the residence.

The error of our ways was worth it.

Since today is the date in 1512 when the Sistine Chapel Ceiling was opened to the public, I wish to share my Sistine Chapel experience with you.

A God is in His heaven, all is right with the world moment.

The entrance to the Sistine Chapel is through the Vatican Museums. A separate and distinct beauty from the Chapel itself. The museum portion we went through was a long corridor perhaps 12 feet wide. The Catholic Church has hanging on the walls and ceiling (yes, on the ceiling also) many many paintings. No wall or ceiling space evident. Frames touching each other.

I would have estimated the paintings’ value in the millions back then. Today, the billions.

All of a sudden you were in the Sistine Chapel itself. A large but not so large room. Michelangelo’s ceiling above.

We were packed like sardines in the room. No exaggeration.

Everyone’s neck cranked back to look up at what is regarded as one of the major accomplishments of human civilization.

Awesome. Everyone speechless. Only the sound of breathing.

I was fortunate to visit Rome many years later again. This time in the winter. Very few tourists. As a result, no crowding.

Sean Connery died last night in his sleep at age 90. May he rest in peace.

One of the great 007s.

I admired his acting. He worked till his later years. Always in a starring role. Roles he grew into.

Living in Key West, you learn about our coral reef. Often in trouble. Sick with what is known as coral bleaching.

There is a coral reef running along one side of Australia. Known as the Great Barrier Reef.

It has been there I assume as long as man has existed.

The last time anything new was discovered about the reef was 120 years ago. Now, a new and unbelievable discovery!

A portion of the coral reef has been discovered which is taller than the Empire State Building. Never seen by anyone before. It was discovered by a remote operated vehicle.

The Great Barrier Reef and this newly discovered rather tall portion has existed like forever without being affected by the malady coral bleaching.

What I am about to discuss raises the question whether the occurrence is America. Is us. It reflects a situation where a number of people were placed in harm’s way.

Saturday night, a Biden bus was traveling San Antonio to Austin on I-35 for Biden’s speech later in the evening. Biden was not on the bus.

Some Texans have had a “Trump Train” during the campaign. A Trump Train is a series of tractor trailers and cars. Saturday night numbering around 100. Flags and Trump paraphernalia adorning the vehicles. Horn blowing and adults whooping it up. Yelling profanities and obscenities.

The Trump Train surrounded the Biden bus. Trying to force it to stop in the center of the highway or push it off the highway.

Biden’s staffers were rattled. Called 911. The police came. The local police assisted.

Out of an abundance of caution, the Biden rally later in the evening in Austin was cancelled.

When Trump became aware, he tweeted “I LOVE TEXAS.”

Why did the Trump Train Americans do what they did? For the same reason that coronavirus is out of control. Their leader Donald Trump supports no mask wearing and social distancing. If he does improper crazy things, they can also.

It is a reflection of lack of respect. Respect for each other. It is ok to disagree and argue. It is never proper to let things get out of hand so others may or do suffer.

Should Trump win, these same followers will find out over the next 4 years how there lives will change. America will clearly be on the road to an authoritarian regime. Note regime, not government. Trump will bully and defecate on his followers because that is the nature of the man.  They will discover they live in a new world!

My poor Syracuse. Lost to Wake Forest yesterday 38-14. Record this season so far 1-5.

Woe is us!

The Key west Citizen was born this date in 1906.

Key West’s daily Inter-Ocean and weekly Key West Citizen combined to become the daily Key West Citizen.

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

7 comments on “THE SISTINE CHAPEL

  1. “across the country, the group most responsible for making voting harder, if not impossible, for millions of Americans is the Republican Party. Republicans have been saying it themselves for ages. “I don’t want everybody to vote,” Paul Weyrich, a leader of the modern conservative movement, told a gathering of religious leaders in 1980. “As a matter of fact, our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down.”

    • Well, we need to change that. Not by cheating, but by voting in greater numbers, as if it was OUR religion. This is not the first instance where Republican cheating and dirty tricks have cause our country great harm. And when our country is in trouble, everybody suffers.

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