Those nuns were everything for me and I always loved working for them. Because I feel very cold in London and had to stay at the till close to the door I was always fully covered and no rare people would mistake me as a nun... I lost account of how many "God bless you" I've said to smiley customers.
In April 2003 I went to Rome for the beatification of Giacomo Alberione, founder of the Pauline Family. The nuns paid accommodation and full board to all employees to go celebrate with them. That was truly a once in a lifetime experience.
We attended Sunday mass celebrated by Pope John Paul II at Piazza di San Pietro, festive mass at San Paolo Fuori le Mura and a special Audience with the Pope for the Pauline Family. Not to mention the delight of being in Rome.
The nuns were at their HQ house and me and the other girls were lodged in a convent a bit further down the Colisseum. I was quite proud of being able to help people at the table at lunch time, I needed to make myself understood in 4 different languages: English, Italian, French and bits of Spanish. The only one I haven't spoke was my own: Portuguese. But, being in Rome, who cares?
Walking on those streets, sorving that air, delighted with the architecture. Fontana di Trevi, Piazza Navona, Basilica de San Pietro, and, mainly, Sao Paolo Fuori le Mura, Castel Sant'Angelo, the ruins of old Rome. Real cappuccino, gorgeous pasta and people, wine and lots of prayers and enchantment. Ah! And there is Michelangelo. Absolutely magnificent, perfect, enormous. I am sure he wasn't a human being, but something like God's hands in a man's body. One can hardly believe that the marble he touched wasn't really a piece of cloth until he finished his works. There is no words to describe him, his works were the most perfect things I have ever seen.
Walking on and around History & beautiful architecture, what else could I want? Life is just perfect, anywhere. Simply learn how to smile...
Late note on Apr 2008 - Who could believe that that would be the same Italy where I was going to live a year later?