today was my favourite day here so far. the cathedral bells ring more frequently on Sundays (i suppose to increase attendance at mass.) The weather was a complete blessing: calm, grey, drizzling rain. I slept until nearly one. I could blame the jet-lag but i was simply enjoying the peace in my room with my roommate gone (loud sleeper, loud waker-upper, loud get-readier...) So, between my good book, the lack of heat, the warmth of blankets, and the sounds of wet streets and drainpipes, i slept soundly into the day.
i bundled up and went for a run to Ponte Vecchio (literally: "old bridge"), the surrounding bridges, and along the river. (pictured above. i didn't take it.) it was the first time here that i've been able to feel completely independent. My roommate(s) like to travel together and aren't into sightseeing and exploring. They are very concerned with not being American and FITTING IN WITH THE ITALIANS. I was most definitely the only person here that i've seen running and very much an american doing so. i've decided that it's really not that important for me to "be an italian." for a moment i'll be a terrible person and make a judgment slash generalization: italians seem very insecure. their culture centers around pleasure yet very few of them look happy. i'm sure this view will change but for now, between the womens' smug looks and "high fashion" and the mens' forwardness they are trying to exude with a confidence that makes up for insecurity. tangent.
the run was beautiful, my new worship music that becca gave me really helped me to remember that God is just as much in Florence as He is in Colorado. it helped me to see the people as He sees them. (CHECK OUT "JESUS CULTURE")
tonight i went to a small church that was in English! There were maybe 20 people there and i am still mulling it over. i think the pastor is from africa. i loved it; the overheads with misspelled words, communion, new friends. i honestly didn't get much out of the message, but sometimes basics are so nice. it was refreshing to worship. it's easy for me to feel too 'american christian' and take for granted the beauty and ease of gathering in His name. tonight, it meant the world to me.
Chaio! buena notta!