A Travellerspoint blog

Day 14, Italy - My last day and Pompeii!

Tee hee, that rhymed.

sunny

I don't think it's a coincidence that it's taken me so long to write this last post. There won't be one for the day of my flight out because this was the last day we spent sightseeing, unless you include the 40 minute taxi ride to the airport.

We woke up early and went to pick up our second rental car, a baby blue Fiat this time. On the way we stopped for espresso and cream filled croissant, mixing up the menu a bit. Our destination today: Pompeii! Now you can take this trip by train and then bus, which is probably easier but more expensive and less adventurous. Also, the train left at 5 in the morning and we weren’t about that.

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Mount Vesuvius from the car

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I find it really amazing that there are thousands of people living under Mount Vesuvius. Hell, Napoli is nestled right in its bosom. What I find shocking is that they have a very large and very famous reminder of what happens to civilizations living next to active volcanoes, Pompeii.

We kinda got lost on our way to Pompeii. You know how Garmin's can be. Our Italian Garmin took us to a suburb of Napoli that I wouldn't recommend. I didn't think snapping pictures would do us any favors in our brand new baby blue Fiat with Garmin on the dash but I can tell you we were driving through the projects. It’s funny how universal a thing like that is. I guess people are people no matter what country they live in. Couches on the side of the road, laundry hanging from windows, pieces of bicycles on the street, and many unsavory characters roaming the sidewalks. And you know that they know that you're not from around there.

We did make it to Pompeii though and with no incident. My first impression, BIG. Much, much bigger than I had expected. Also, they are still undergoing excavation work. Still digging up entire portions of the city. You can see steps leading into dirt mounds that haven't been dug up yet. Very, very impressive.

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Pompei is very accepting of dogs and you can even "sponsor" a dog for a day in lieu of paying admission. Unfortunately, I didn't know this until we had entered the park. Otherwise, I most likely would have sponsored a cane.

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For those who don't know, cause I didn't, during the excavation of Pompeii, they began finding hollow points underneath the ash. After doing sonograms of the area they determined it was human remains that had been encased in ash during the catastrophe. Over the years the bodies had decayed but left perfectly preserved imprints. They've filled these hollow cavities with cement and we now have these molds.

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Bath House

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It's amazing what things have been preserved so well over time when others have been completely wiped out.

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Temple of Apollo...I think

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These remains bothered me the most. I can only imagine curling up in a corner waiting for the end. *shivers* Sorry to be such a Debbie Downer.

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The Ancient Cafe

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The House of Mysteries, the best preserved building in Pompeii. Known for its Frescos.

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All of that is Rosemary. Smelled delicious!

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Pompeian Cane saying Ciao Ciao!

The whole experience was impressive, humbling really. Pompeii was an active city for over 300 years, older than our country, and it was wiped out in a day or so. An entire culture and history just gone. Mother nature can be a cagna.

After Pompeii we decided to visit the National Museum in Napoli. Apparently, most of what remains of Pompeii, or at least the really impressive stuff, is held there. They've taken away a lot of more historical artifacts to preserve them. It was this idea that lead us, by car, to the heart of Napoli driving in unbelievable traffic. Absolutely no rules, few traffic lights whose signals were rarely observed, and no lanes. Not even attempts at lanes. Our previous experiences in Roma and Milano paled in comparison.

We ended up not visiting the museum. We already had the impression that Napoli is for the brave tourist and we knew the museum would be closing in less than an hour, but when we saw that the National Museum was covered in graffiti (I particularly enjoyed, "Ti amo Rosemarie"), it sealed the deal. We turned around and went back to Roma. I was letting my hair down and trying poof it up to bring out my Italian. Travis, ginger that he is, stood out a bit.

Sadly, this is where my pictures end because Travis has the second SD card with the remaining pictures from that day. The first SD card we used only held around 1,500 pictures and it reached its max just before the end. We did go and have a very enjoyable dinner that night at the same cafe. We had a three cheese penne and one last pizza. Travis finished it with a dolce of tiramisu and I enjoyed my last gelato.

That was it. This is the end for me. The next day I boarded a plane and 16 hours later I landed in Tampa with severe jet lag and a longing to go back and do it all over again.

Arrivederci!

Lisa

P.S.

Travis has sent me some pictures and he will have his own few posts but I wanted to share how much I appreciate those who have followed this blog and have commented. I've really enjoyed sharing my trip with everyone. It's been better than a Facebook share! <3

Posted by TheMeekOnes 06:15 Archived in Italy

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Comments

Wow. How humbling, yet at the same time, fascinating! I want to see all 1500 pictures you have. We haven't had time to sit down and look at them yet! Love you!

by Michelle (Mom)

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