When Mum and I were wandering around Rome a few weekends back, we took a quick tour of the basilica of St Mary of the Angels and Martyrs, a basilica built inside the frigidarium (the what?) of the ancient Diocletian Baths of Rome.
Inside we saw a giant white marble head wrapped in bandages, lying on its side in one of the chapels. It was a sculpture of the head of St John the Baptist by Polish sculptor Igor Mitoraj, the very same artist fellow who sculpted the basilica’s bronze doors.
When Mum wondered, out loud, what we were looking at I told her, because I’d already seen the label, “It’s the head of St John the Baptist, Mum.”
“Oh, I see,” said Mum who took a longer look.
“Not the actual head of St John the Baptist, you understand,” I clarified, ” a statue of the head of St John the Baptist.” Oh, I thought I was hilarious.
Mum just rolled her eyes and said, “Oh, Stella!” but I was chuckling at my own joke for at least half an hour afterwards.