Stopped by a German couple looking for the Termini. They anxiously refused to ride the bus. Thinking about the complex, nearly chaotic layout of Roman streets, and despairing for my sanity and theirs in trying to explain to them how to get to the Termini, I settled on the time-honored Roman method of giving directions: I pointed straight ahead with great authority and smiled real big.
A young woman approached me speaking Italian so fast my face got windburned. She was decked out in the latest teen fashions--jeans, ski jacket, expensive shades, etc. I asked her if she spoke English. She glared at me menacingly and spoke one word: "Money." I barked a laugh and walked off.
A middle-aged man approached me, speaking Italian. He asked if I lived at the Angelicum. I said yes. Then he started asking me rapid-fire questions about the Order, informing me that he was wanting to join an American province. I asked me if he spoke English. He smiled and switched to a heavily accented Mexican-English. Turns out that he is a philosophy professor in Mexico City and wants to join the Southern Province! We exchanged info and parted friends.
So, wearing the habit on the streets of Rome can have its pluses and minuses.
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