Last night I couldn’t finish my blog post because the wifi in my apartment seemed to cut out. After a frustrating hour or so, I went to bed around midnight. Four hours later I wa awakened by a weird nightmare involving Harry Potter and zombies (I blame it on that Harry Potter Lego statue I saw the other night and posted on Facebook and Instagram).
To make it even worse, the wind blew the French doors off my balcony open, and I awoke from my nightmare convinced someone had entered my room. However, that would have been impossible. The doorway to my balcony has these heavy wooden-slat type of blinds that come down at night. They only be lifted from the inside, and there is only enough room between the slats to let a little air in. Also, I’m up on the seventh floor. No way is someone getting onto my balcony, much less through the wooden slats.
Nonetheless, by the time I’d come to this rational thought, I was completely awake and couldn’t fall back asleep until it was nearly time to wake up again.
When my alarm went off, I begrudgingly awakened. I got even crankier when I realized the wifi still wasn’t working. I decided to leave for school a little early to see if I could get my blog to post via the wifi there. However, the wifi wasn’t working in my classroom either.
During break, I took my iPad to the hallway. Up and down I walked trying to get a wifi signal. Finally, I found a weak signal in the stairwell. However, it was going too slowly and didn’t finish before the break ended.
After class, I tried again, but I was still having difficulty. The signal seemed to have disappeared from the stairwell. Finally, I got reconnected and posted the blog, but by this time, I was incredibly tired (given the five or so hours I’d had of sleep) and really hungry.
After grabbing a quick lunch, I returned home to drop off my school stuff and ran off to meet Katie. We had tickets for the Scavi tour at St. Peter’s. Only a small number of people can take this tour each day, and you have to request your tickets in advance. The tour takes you two levels below St. Peter’s to the necropolis (city of the dead, or cemetery) that was on the original Vatican hill. This is where St. Peter was buried. Constantine wanted to build a monument for St. Peter, so he had the old cemetery hill covered with dirt so that the land would be leveled off for the monument. Then a church was built around the monument. Twelve hundred years later, a pope decided it was time for a new church, and it was built on top of the old one. This is the current St. Peter’s that we know today. The old church underneath it is where many of the old popes are now buried.
The tour took us through the excavated part of the old necropolis (think family mausoleum after family mausoleum) right up to where they believe St. Peter was buried. Then we went up a level to where the monument to him was built. On the wall there are prayers people wrote. There is also writing that says something like “Peter is here.”
Finally, we were free to walk around the “old church” level where the popes are now buried and then up to the current-day basilica. Unfortunately, we couldn’t take pictures during the Scavi tour, but I got this nice shot of St. Peter’s before we left.