On November 24th-25th I had the chance to be invited to a conference in Oxford. The conference was organized by a friend of mine at the Bodleian Library and Lincoln College, and it was about a collection of manuscripts - the Canonici collection - which has been purchased by the Bodleian Library in 1817. Since I’m a researcher in medieval liturgical texts, I was invited to speak about the liturgical manuscripts of this collection.
I delivered my paper in front of about 70 people. It was not the first time, but the context was quite intimidating, because there were professors from Oxford university and scholars from many different countries. I was scared, and my heart was beating faster and faster. But at the moment of delivering my paper, I only thought about the work I had done, and how proud I was of that.
The Bodleian Library is a fantastic place for studying. I was there for three months in 2016 and this was one of the most empowering periods of my life. I remember vividly the smell of books, the silent walking of people, the kindness of the librarians, even the nice coffee breaks at the cafeteria… and I miss it a lot. So being there again was like coming home.
After my speech, many people came to me to tell me how they appreciated my research. It was maybe the first time I could receive a compliment and feel that I really deserve it. I met new people as well as old friends, and I had a very good time. I had my accommodation at the Magdalene College, one of the most stunning places in the world. From my window, I could see the park and the other buildings of the college, and the little lights twinkling in the night.
The second day I spent some time in a coffee shop, writing down my thoughts and impressions and walking in the sun - an exceptional experience in England! The sky was so clear and intense, the grass of a bright green, and I felt overwhelmed by all the beauty and the peace I was experiencing.
The last night I had a glass of wine with an old friend of mine. We were sitting in the fellow’s room of the college, in a complete silence, the only noise was the ticking of an old clock… we talked about dreams and passions and future projects, and I thought that I want my life to be always like this moment, the perfect moment that you live when you are vibrating in resonance with the true part of yourself.
I’m so grateful for what I had that I could not help but tell you my story. I hope you enjoy my pictures, and I very recommend you to visit this astonishing place. And if you want to learn more about my journey and my lifestyle, please click here.