We went to church here this morning ! It’s on the Ave Maria University campus , 17 miles east of Naples , Florida . Tom Monaghan , former owner of Domino’s Pizza, started a catholic university in Ann Arbor Michigan , but the town wouldn’t let him expand , so he moved the campus to this rural location in Florida . It’s a gorgeous campus! They pre-planned the town around it , with the Oratory (church) right in the middle . Shaped like the Pope’s “hat”, it is stunning inside and out . I’ve never seen the Stations of the Cross as beautiful – wood surrounding metal and marble – wow . The 1,200 students who attend here are truly blessed .
We drove into Naples after lunch , and found the old pier. The Pelicans sit and wait for scraps from all the fishermen , and people were waiting to get a picture with this old guy . After he nipped someone’s shoulder , they all moved away and I took this picture .
The beach was packed with sunbathers in all sizes and shapes – most of them just sitting and soaking up the sun . It was only 76, so felt just right .We didn’t swim , and I only picked up a handful of shells before we headed out to run errands .
We drove through Old Town and I found 4 shops that Eliza and I “need” to visit – we are already thinking about back to school clothes for her, but I keep reminding her that we will be living in the mountains and we will be freezing again , so all these flimsy clothes may not cut it . For now , though , we are enjoying playing tourist and being warm !