Thursday, May 5, 2016


Yesterday our ship docked in the enormous port of Naples.  We disembarked and went off in search of Neopolitan pizza.  Success at the Trattoria Medina, where we had, naturally, pizza Medina, with arugula, ham, and multiple cheeses.  It was delicious.  

Our excursion to Herculaneum began shortly after lunch.  A half hour drive through the not so beautiful streets of Naples to the ruins of the ancient city, preserved in volcanic ash over the centuries from the eruption of Vesuvius, AD 79.  Mount Vesuvius looms over Naples, and I can't help wondering at the large residential areas built in its shadow.  How quickly we forget!

In the Herculaneum, we saw the ruins of houses, shops, wine stores, reception halls, the woman's spa.   We also saw ingenious systems for collecting rainwater.   We walked across elegant mosaic floors, entered rooms with still colorful frescos, and looked under the arches where all sorts of skeletons were found, preserved just as they died, probably from the immense heat of the lava.    Apparently, the local population didn't realize what was happening and went into the cellars where they had sheltered before during the frequent earthquakes.  Women and children were separated from the men, for some reason.  Much of what we saw was original, some things (like the skeletons) were copies.    It's a fascinating place.  I can't help thinking that all these thousands of years later, we still are living in more or less the same way.   The women's spa could have been in Calistoga, with changing rooms, steam rooms, soaking tubs.  

After the tour, Larry and I found a tiny Internet cafe at the port and I was able to post a blog or two.

1 comment:

  1. This is fascinating. Looks like an incredible place to visit.