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Theft at Track 24

Posted by on Apr 6, 01:44 PM
Filed under , | Comment [8]

The laptop was gone when I returned to my seat in Roma Termini. We were on our way back to Albano last night from our short stay in the Convent at Vigne. I had nipped off to use the bathroom, leaving my new laptop just inches from Andrew’s left hip—the new laptop just delivered from the United States, as you might recall. I asked him to watch my things while I was gone, but carelessly left it just outside of his field of vision: when he looked over ‘within a minute of my exit’ the computer wasn’t there—he thought I had taken it with me after all.

When I returned a few minutes later, I stopped short as soon as I noticed its disappearance. A quick scan of the bags around the bench told me that Andrew hadn’t moved it. “Where’s my computer?” I asked. A surprised look as he turned to me confirmed my fears. I stood stunned. The concrete where I’d been sitting stared back, black and silent.

The laptop was gone. And the photos too: several thousand irreplaceable photographs—from Morocco, Spain, and France—all lost. A police report was soon filed, but haven’t much hope of its discovery: not in a city of nearly three million inhabitants.

Truly, though: quid hoc ad aeternitatem?

Yours Detachedly,



  1. Truly
    Welome to Italy…their hands outstretched for tips, lips bubbling with servile praise…and whose belongings have they not expertly lifted? (A quote from Fr. Fortescue, only slightly modified)

    Justin F · Apr 7, 07:32 PM · #

  2. Dear Leese Brothers,

    What devastating news! I am so sorry to hear of the loss of the laptop and photos. I regularly check the blog for updates and pictures of your journey, both of which I have thoroughly enjoyed. I could hardly bear to read this post (I’m stopping by 2 days after the event, actually) of the terrible theft.

    (Goodness, now my evening almost feels ruined – what an unfortunate event.) I wish I could do something to assist you both. St. Anthony, help!

    Keep an eye on your goal and your spirits high.
    Prayers always for your safety,

    Rachel W · Apr 7, 08:47 PM · #

  3. Dear Brothers,
    Buon Compleanno!
    The Good Lord has blessed it with a cross… Fiat! Remember the goal of the trip is no so much the challenge of the physical rather than that of the spiritual: the longest (in km!) act of charity in your life!
    Check the email for more news.
    With my blessing and greetings to all the friends in Latium!
    Fr D Couture

    — Fr. Couture · Apr 8, 02:01 AM · #

  4. There is a massive devotion to St. Anthony in India – you never know, you might find that its only ‘lost’ not ‘stolen’ and St. Anthony is always willing to help in those cases!
    Praying for your ‘thief’ to find his concience.
    Happy Easter to you both,
    best wishes,
    (currently in Scotland where its really, really, really cold!)

    — Monica · Apr 8, 01:47 PM · #

  5. How’s your drawing? Maybe you can sketch the scenes from memory? :D

    — DJ and JDT in KS · Apr 11, 07:22 PM · #

  6. Thanks for the condolences and prayers. It was a blessing—a good lesson in detachment. I only regret that I won’t be able to blog soon or share many of the lost photos with our faithful followers.

    And Monica, back in Scotland already! I hope you’re well. Regards to your dear family!

    - R o m a

    Randall · Apr 13, 01:06 AM · #

  7. I don’t believe it!!! My sister is coming out from the US in two weeks, she could bring you a new laptop and then we send it via DHL or Fedex to you. Let me know, I know she would be happy to bring it. Bjs, Cat

    Cat · Apr 13, 04:38 AM · #

  8. Yes, I’m terribly sorry, Cat—after you went to all that trouble to get it to me, we’ve gone and lost it! It’s worse than the loss itself!
    But I would be delighted to avail myself of your sister’s help. Could you please send me some more details?

    Thanks again ! ! !

    Also, just so everyone knows, it probably wasn’t an Italian who took my laptop: the Termini draws shady-, seedy-looking immigrants from all over Europe. Simply the wrong place to be flashing an expensive laptop!

    Randall · Apr 14, 02:39 AM · #

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