Vatican City State
Italy, no matter how you look, the country is unique! Even if you do not remember about its architectural “super-beauty”, ancient monuments and the sea! The fact that this little “boot” sheltered 2 more states literally in itself is simply wonderful! On the first, San Marino, I have already written; Now I want to talk about the second, the Vatican.
The city-state of the Vatican, the smallest in the world, is just in Rome, so do not see it, arriving there, is unacceptable. Or rather – even impossible: Rome, without the Vatican, you yourself “will not count”.
I visit the Vatican crashed into the memory at once for two reasons. The first one is traditional: the Vatican gardens, the Cathedral of St. Peter and the Sistine Chapel do not leave anyone indifferent, it’s just no options. And the second one is banal to obscenity: a bad guide! Of course, such a “trifle” is not a hindrance to the Vatican, but I remember the fact. The irony of fate: the memory weed out a lot of quality guides, leaving only the best and … worst.
I do not remember the story of this old grandmother, extracted, obviously, due to the deficit: interrupting in mid-sentence, she constantly checked the presence of our radio guide receivers, worrying about a possible € 50 fine and “scaring” spiritual nirvana.
But Nirvana was present! Because everything here is unusual, starting from the borders: this is both a simple white line on St. Peter’s Square, and the powerful walls of the 16th century – in other places. We entered the Vatican through the gates, bypassing the guards. The guard of the Vatican is already its landmark: the Swiss Guard, the design of which was designed by Michelangelo.
And then we got to St. Peter’s Square, which we had seen on the eve of our evening walk through Rome. There is no such effect: a, we have already seen! The largest area of Rome delights every time you get to it! On Sundays, it is filled with chairs for everyone to see and hear the Pope: he gives a small speech. This tradition undoubtedly forms the aura of the area: the energy of the sincere prayer of thousands of worshipers affects everyone who comes here.
St. Peter’s Cathedral is the largest in Christian Europe. And if you watch it in a deserted time … I do not even venture to predict the impression! But to get to the Vatican itself is quite difficult: the queues past which we proudly passed are colossal. And tourist groups are also not measured, and you get lost in the Cathedral twice: in its vastness and in a crowd of thousands. That’s right: the temple holds 60,000 people!
Everything in the Cathedral is monuments and a miracle: the diameter of its dome, which Michelangelo built for almost 20 years, is 42 meters, slightly inferior to the Pantheon; about 100 statues of martyrs adorn the colonnade of the main entrance; the Cathedral itself is the tomb of the Popes and St. Peter, one of the beloved disciples of Christ, also crucified on the cross.
And if St. Peter’s Cathedral remained in the memory of many-sided and many-voiced, the Sistine Chapel was remembered not only by the incredible paintings of Michelangelo, but also by the best music in the world – silence …
What a blessing that it is forbidden to tell: no bad guide can spoil the impression of this place! I do not know prayers, church rites and etiquette, but here it turned out to be unnecessary to bewitch and immerse in a state of spiritual elevation, when one can easily believe in a higher and brighter beginning. Everyone sees and feels something of his own in the chapel, but, considering the numerous biblical scenes, you unwittingly renounce the material world. No wonder that the popes are elected there.
I think that in the Vatican one should strive in the presence of even a pale shadow of possibility ☺. This is a spiritual food that is more scarce and much more important than a normal healthy diet …