First European Trip, 1963

Sister Elizabeth Anne Sueltenfuss, photographed on June 14, 1963, the day she left for her first trip to Europe.

Among the archived files of former OLLU President Sister Elizabeth Anne Sueltenfuss (1921-2009) are transcripts of notes she kept during nearly 30 years of travels across the world. At the time of the following trip to Europe, Sister Elizabeth Anne had just graduated with a Ph.D. in microbiology from Notre Dame and was traveling with her mother. She was 42 years old. In these three short excerpts – spanning only 10 days — you see a snippet of what Sister Elizabeth Anne experienced on her first visits to Ireland, England, and France.

June 15, 1963

It took us from 9:45 to 1 p.m. to get to Dublin – everytime I saw something I wanted to keep forever on film Father obligingly stopped the car. We had a time finding just the typical Irish homes, but when we did see what he thought I should have we took the picture. I got some good shots of Irish gypsies, milk wagons, yellow furze flowers, thatched roof houses, typical country store and adjacent waiting station. This was old Ireland – and we were soon to find a real contrast to the new Ireland growing out of Dublin.

June 21, 1963

On reaching Cambridge – the English countryside was beautifully peaceful, low and rolling – we took a bus into central Cambridge. Then took a taxi to the Department of Veterinary Medicine where we planned to visit Professor Beveridge and Muriel Rose. He was gone to the farms and she was in London taking exams. We were interested because Dr. Pollard had worked with him, and Mrs. Rose had been employed in our laboratories as a technician for some months. At any rate Marguerite McKean showed us the laboratories and we had coffee and English biscuits. Mr. Downe from there took us to the back of the Cambridge colleges – as we were getting into the car he told us that white smoke had been seen from the Vatican and that we had a new pope. But at this time we didn’t know who.

June 25, 1963

Mass at St. Medard. Went to the Louvre–closed since it was Tuesday. Surprised at the number of men at early mass and the participation of the laity in the mass prayers. A layman read the epistle and gospel in French. Walked in the Tuileries garden. Had a French lunch of raw mushrooms–everything came in courses. This was France. Rode later to St. Chapelle in the Palais de Justice. Ferme. Not our day. Jean Claude would hardly believe us when we told him these places were closed, and he was ashamed of Paris, he said. Returned to the Cathedral of Notre Dame which is beautiful exterially but a disappointment otherwise. This is its 500th anniversary. We lighted candles again to burn as our prayers for you. I bought some slides of Paris at night since I hadn’t been able to capture any of these historical on film myself. Dinner with all the Solomons at Paul’s Restaurant–typically French Bistrot! The old Solomons were delightful and we had a gay time. Veal steaks in paper. Some kind of fancy egg roll meat entree. And a delicacy of TRIPE! Tried for some French pastry but didn’t order what was suggested-Mrs. Solomon got some kind of dessert with burning brandy to show us how it was served. Mr. Solomon had ordered a big bottle of table wine which they served in a bucket of ice. He kept turning it to make it cold. Meanwhile everyone wondered how we could be having such a good time.

 

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