After finishing a summer internship with the US State Department in Paris several years ago, I spent a couple of weeks touring Italy, Greece, and Egypt. During my tour, I discovered that one of my favorite places on Earth is Rome. I love the Eternal City! The history, the architecture, the magnificent ruins, the fabulous food, the famous fountains, and the overall joie de vivre of the Romans was enchanting. Some of my favorite daytime photography subjects in the city included the view of the Forum and Coliseum from the Capitoline Museum, and Vatican City. At night, I was mesmerized by the beauty of the Piazza Navonna with its beautifully lit Bernini fountains flanking the ancient space ringed with cafes and artists' stalls, as well as the magnificence and romance surrounding the spectacle of the Trevi Fountain. It is certainly a stunning city, and I was amazed at how the well the ruins from different epochs fit harmoniously together, and how Rome can still modernize without sacrificing its past.
For this photo, I was lucky to have my hotel right near the entrance to Vatican City. After touring the Vatican and admiring the School of Athens by Raphael and the divine Sistine ceiling of Michelangelo, I wandered around the Vatican enclosure and snapped this shot with a Nikon film camera and a 24-120 lens. The view is stunning, but I remember that I was looking for something unique to include in the foreground, something to make the shot standout from other generic photos of this sacred space. At that moment, two nuns dressed in white passed by, and I hurriedly snapped the shot before they exited the frame. I would like to think the coincidence was divinely inspired.