Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Popemobile Museum: Exquisite And One Of Its Kind

While everyone is busy digesting the news of the resignation by Pope Benedict, we shall look into the wheels and accessories on display at the Vatican's Popemobile Museum in Rome. Around five million visitors entered the Vatican City museums last year. The Stanza della Seagnatura, Caravaggio's Entombment of the Christ, Giottos Triptych and da Vinci's St Jerome are some work of arts stared and admired by many. Countless paid respect and applauded while they trooped the museums and galleries to absorb the culture of the region and by seeing the newly refurbished popemobile range and a jeep as the latest acquisition.

With the first Sunday of the month, free entries to the museum had some reactions and gestures which were deemed to be. Awesome, cool and the new age status symbol were comments flying in the atmosphere. The Padiglione delle Carrozze, the Pope's private parking was the place where people stood. Not to be surprised, the Pope's official residence has a private petrol station, railway station, cinema and now an even bigger Popemobile Museum having more than 12 papamobili and about 9 papal cars. Nissan, Renault, Chrysler - these are not the cars in which one can see the Pope. A car which no one ever overtakes is the car best suited for someone like the Pope.
While traveling, Pope has been chauffeured in everything. The Mercedes Benz Museum in Stuttgart and the Peugeot Museum in France, these have the ride of the Pope preserved and cherished. Not only for observance but some of the rides which the Pope used have been sold or are rented for whooping amounts. The Armour plated Leyland mobile throne which was used by the Pope on his British visit was sold for £37,000 while the Ford truck on which John Paul II had a ride while he visited Ireland is available to be rented at approximately €300 an hour. As we moved on in ceremonial procession, some more antiquities and vintage conveyance were on display. The Berlina Gran Gala gilded carriage which was built in the year 1826 for Pope Leo XII was a site which needed a halt to be admired fully. The five feet high wooden wheels which were driven by 6 horses required a couple of men to handle its suspension and handling.

These royal modes of conveyance have evolved greatly ever since the beginning of these majestic mythologies. Some hazardous events have also made popemobiles bullet proof for safety purposes. Last year, Pope Benedict took in hand the keys of his first electric car, the Renault kangoo. Today the papal fleet has a couple of black sedans and a Mercedez-Benz popemobile, all consisting of number plates SCV1 (Stato della Citta del Vaticano). The strangest item in the museum is a steering wheel. Ferrari, formula one racing car wheel was given by the company president to honor John Paul II for achieving pole position on the roads to humanity.