... and so a likely explanation of the word "acapella" came to mind as we pitch perfected the galleria shuffle as demanded by the crush of humanity who were all keen to get to one of the highlights of any Vatican visit, the Sistine Chapel aka Cappella Sistine to the locals.
The scope of images and the narrative behind the many scenes is overwhelming at first and then second... the realisation quickly dawned that I lacked the knowledge and understanding to comprehend all that was laid out before me in any depth (what comes after pig ignorant I ask?) akin to a 10 year old child's interpretation of Romeo and Juliet that describes it as a story about a house party and a boy called Romeo liking a girl called Juliet.
Luckily our guide provided a pre-Cappella briefing that gave some clues about technical aspects of the works and the political commentary to be found. Like Taylor Swift whose acerbic lyrics regarding her ex lovers cut to the bone, Michelangelo was not to be trifled with. In short it seems that any upstart Cardinal whispering artistic criticism in the Pope's ear needed to be wary lest you end up in Hell looking like an ass with the snake of sin taking a crack at your nether regions. The Pope of the time was a huge fan Mickey A and when said Cardinal complained of his depiction the big fella allegedly replied that Michelangelo had painted the Cardinal in Hell where he had no power to assist. If he had been placed in purgatory, then there would have been some chance of redemption.
We had 15 minutes to gaze upon the wonder and I felt enormously better when a priest offered up a prayer to all present. (Actually, I loved the timbre of his voice as he cried "Silencio!" at the throng from across the world. Irony anyone?
The iconic image... Fingers almost touching. It was fabulous to see this central on the ceiling in context of all that surrounds it.