After taking it easy for a few weeks while his successor was elected and got a feel for things, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI returned to his old stomping grounds at the Vatican. Of course he won’t be living in the Papal apartment, even if it is unoccupied and, one assumes, for rent given Pope Francis’ humble desires. Rather he’ll be living in a converted monastery on the Vatican grounds. Think of it as a large granny-shack. By all accounts Benedict is looking frail, noticeably more so than when he was last seen on March 23rd.
“You had your chance, now it’s my turn”
The two men, who have stated they don’t want to be referred to as roomies, and are not sure yet if The Odd Couple is appropriate, met to discuss ground rules for their co-habitation. Francis has made it clear he doesn’t want Benedict second-guessing his every move and decision, stating, “You had your chance, now it’s my turn”. For his part Benedict wondered aloud whether a Pope should be wearing a gold-plated ring instead of the real deal and riding in a Volkswagen.
Think of it as a large granny-shack
Pope Francis continues to show his humility by not residing in the Papal apartment, and foregoing many of the traditional trappings of the Papacy. In fact it has been reported that during the conversation with Benedict, while household chores were being divvied-up, Francis insisted he will continue to air and pound the Papal carpets every two weeks by hanging them over the balcony and walloping them with his cherished Gabriela Sabatini autographed tennis racquet.
… walloping (carpets) with his cherished Gabriela Sabatini autographed tennis racquet.
In an effort to make the former Pope as comfortable as possible, Vatican officials have installed slides from second and third floor windows to allow Benedict fast access to St. Peter’s Square and beyond so he can pick up Francis’ newspapers that he used to get himself.The former Pontiff will continue to wear white, but rumors about him swapping his red Pradas for a similar coloured pair of Crocs have yet to be confirmed.
Given that both men are kindhearted souls, I have no doubt they’ll iron out any differences that may arise.