Life in Italy

Bratwursts and Warriors

May 7, 2013

Okay, let the record show, had this little experiment not been published on the www yesterday, I would have climbed into Joey’s noontime dessert bowl of gluten free cornflakes. Climbed in and opened wide.

I don’t really even like cornflakes. But I am drowning in vegetables, and they sounded like an appetizing alternative.

Dave assured me that once I got over my ‘Italian meat phobia’ born of a single isolated incident which may or may not have involved horse meat, I’d feel a lot better. And as I sit here eating my THIRD smallish bowl of homemade paleo beef stew, (how obnoxious do I sound? Punch yourself, Jenny) I’m beginning to think he was right.

But I thought the cravings wouldn’t start till day 4 or 6. So maybe I’ll be fully converted and adjusted by then?

Anyway, on to more exciting things, like the pictures from last night’s swearing in ceremony of the newest members of the Swiss Guard (the Pope’s exclusive, private security force, dating back to Pope Clement VII) and the subsequent fully-catered Swiss banquet reception in the antechamber of Paul VI hall inside Vatican City. We be rollin’.

Group shot.

I drank zero glasses of the beautiful champagne and ate 1 whole, naked bratwurst dipped in special limited edition Swiss Guard mustard. When I saw grown men in suits pocketing the tubes of stuff stacked on the buffets, I figured I’d best snap a few up for our home collection, too.

The ceremony itself was a little long for a 1 and 2.5 year old to handle at dinnertime, but it was super cool when they actually came to the swearing of the oath. They marched up to their commandant one by one and aggressively grasped a horizontally-held flag before throwing their right hands up in this awesome thumb-index-middle-finger salute. Three for the Trinity. And then they screamed their oaths in German (or French, depending on where in Switzerland they hailed from.) And it was terrifying. And awesome. And guess what? They pack semi-automatics under those fancy striped pantaloons. So don’t mess with Switzerland.

He’d be sad to hear it, I’m sure, but I think this wee little one is adorable.

Receiving line after the ceremony.

Clump of monsignores. Off camera: the President of Switzerland. (What? I didn’t know what I was shooting at.)

Basically in my Gap last-season nautically striped dress and worn black flats, I was underdressed for this crowd…except for the large numbers of guests – family members of the new guards, no less – who inexplicably showed up in culots (sp?) and Tevas. One woman was rocking a fanny pack. The guy photo bombing the men of the cloth, pictured above, was only a giournalista, so his hip-hugging denim can be forgiven. But damn, a fanny pack?

Sometimes you just gotta text.

Anyway, the boys liked it a lot and a little, respective to their corraspondant ages, and Joey (loudly) inquired many, many times during lulls in the program ‘What those warriors DOING, Daddy?!’

Joey and his Italian bff Isabel, admiring the halibards from their respective journalist/daddy perches.

Also, there were beer tents. On day one of the worst-country-in-the-world-to-pull-this-off Whole30. Touche, Italy.


  • Reply KJL May 7, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    This is the coolest thing evah! Thank you for sharing the pictures and the details.

  • Reply Kris May 7, 2013 at 4:56 pm

    I’ve been on a similar “eating plan” for a couple of weeks. And I can count the days on one hand that I have NOT cheated in some smallish way. Because giving up the carbs is SO, SO hard. Like death, I tell you. My friend (who has done it for awhile) keeps insisting that it will get easier. I think she’s on drugs.

  • Reply Bonnie May 7, 2013 at 6:24 pm

    Great post. How awesome that you’re getting to experience these things! Things I never even knew I was missing out on that are totally amazingly neat.

  • Reply Joannie May 7, 2013 at 10:52 pm

    This is awesome. I thought it was cool when my roommate dated a Swiss Guard. This is so much cooler. (sorry, Meg…)

  • Reply Megan May 8, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    I remember Marcel telling me part of their oath is declaring they are willing to sacrifice their lives in protecting the Holy Father. So cool you got to attend!

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