Dear Blog readers,
Apologies for the lack of news and information during our travel days (Saturday and Sunday). Traveling by bus and plane and then bus again for a day and a half is an exhausting enterprise, and internet access was unavailable.
The good news is that we are all safely lodged here in Orvieto, province of Umbria, Italy. The plane flights were long, but uncomplicated. The weariness with which we arrived was expected. Our hosts (Dr. John Skillen and Dr. Janis Flint-Ferguson of Gordon College) met us at the Rome airport and oriented us for the ten-day adventure while we traveled by bus to our convent, hostel-type lodging. The rooms are bright and clean with showers and bathroom facilities in each room. We have our own little cafeteria and classroom, with a library and office to use too. The history of this convent goes back to 1280, and parts of this structure are indeed that old!
A duomo (Italian cathedral) was built here for Pope Urban IV in 1264, and it has fresco walls that relate to Dante’s “Divine Commedia,” one of our featured Italian authors for this course.
This quaint little town (population 6000) sits on top of a volcanic plateau and has rich history and lovely Italian beauty all around. The cobblestone streets are narrow and winding, but we managed to walk all over town last night (Sunday) in the misty evening.
Our convent has a palm tree in the courtyard, and the Italian sun this Monday morning is brightly shining with blue skies everywhere. We are off to explore this city and its history.
My 15 students show signs of tiredness, but they are excited, cooperative, and ready to learn, that’s for sure.
We thank our God on this Epiphany day, and we are filled with good will and gratitude.
More later from Orvieto.
Dr. Martin Moldenhauer