While nothing funny had happened on the way to the Forum earlier in the day, funny things did happen on the way up the Cupola. Like walking through the Papal tombs not once but twice because we couldn't find sufficient decoy tourists to distract the guards so we could join the Cupola line at its smallest point. I am, however, very glad to have seen the tombs, with the exception of Paul VI, who creeps me out even in death. Finally, on our third go around some lovely tourist asked the Queue Guard some very involved question, which distracted him long enough that we could hop into the last section of the line to the Cupola. Since the rest of the line was made up of French teenagers, pre-riot, there were no protests, objections, or flaming projectiles.
The thrill of acting like German tourists wore off after step 467. The vague sense that the walls were closing in came around step 1349, and sheer terror set in about 4 steps from the top when we had to grab on to a greasy rope in order to make it through the last twisty tunnel before