VATICAN CITY - Like anyone nearing the end of a business trip, Jorge Bergoglio's morning routine Thursday involved picking up his own luggage and heading to the front desk where he paid his own bill.
Of course, Bergoglio ended his business trip to the Vatican this week with a monster promotion: He's now Pope Francis.
On Wednesday, Vatican officials made a special point of telling the 5,600 journalists in town this week several anecdotes that underlined the humble, everyday, workman-like approach Pope Francis immediately established in his first few hours on his new job.
"He was concerned about giving a good example of what bishops and priests should do," Vatican spokesman Father Thomas Rosica said.
At dinner Wednesday night, for example, the cardinals that had just elected him after five rounds of voting raised their glasses in a toast to the new pontiff. He toasted right back, "May God forgive you for what you've done!"
The line cracked everyone up.
As Pope, Francis is entitled to be ushered around town in a special limousine. But he didn't bother using the limo to get to dinner and instead piled on the same buses the 115 other cardinals were using.
"And as the last bus pulls up, guess who gets off? It's Pope Francis. I guess he told the driver 'That's OK, I'll just go with the boys,'" New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan told Reuters.
Already, Francis has been walking around town, saying hi to people, shaking hands. It's giving his security team headaches but, as Rosica says, the Pope calls the shots, not the bodyguards.
The Vatican has a term for these first few days of a pope's reign: The Days of Surprise. And, indeed, so far, that's just what they are.
As Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Francis chose not to live in the palace that comes with the job and instead lived in a modest apartment, cooked his own meals, and took the subway to work.
This is clearly the image of Francis that the Vatican is keen to project the world: A simple man, a prayerful man, a man who will fight for everyday working people, particularly the poor.
That's why, after all, he took the name Francis, the first pope ever to use that name, to symbolize his closeness to the 12th-century Saint Francis of Assisi who famously repudiated all worldly goods to travel with and minister to beggars and to the poor.
The new Pope will be installed at a special mass at St. Peter's Basilica that will be open to all on Tuesday.
Gov. Gen. David Johnston will attend to officially represent Canada.
Until that mass, Francis' days will be taken up with dozens of meetings and lots of prayer.
On Friday, at 11 a.m., here, he will officially greet all the cardinals.
Then, on Saturday, at Francis' own insistence, he'll meet the world's press and take questions in English, French, Spanish, German or Italian — the languages fluently spoken by the new Pope.