PC605a Napoli Italy

Summary

- Sunday - Archaeology rush - Pompei, Herculeum and Naples Archaeology museum in 1 day.
Opinion - I understand what the Italian Dream is About
Mon - Macdonalds and BT Wireless are conspiring to drive me insane
- Tue - Mega walk to Vesuvius
- Wed - Sorrento and Castelmamare di Stabia
- Friday moved on due to Easter crowds

Sunday - Archaeology rush

- Pompei, Herculeum and Naples Archaeology museum in 1 day.
- I left that fairly crappy hostel in Salerno (no atmophere, just good for foreign school groups). A 25 minute train got me to Pompei.. Walked 1 Km through the ruins to a bargain campsite (cos it's between road and train.. Pretty noisy).
- It was the last day of Free museums due to "La Setana de cultura". The biggest thing about Pompei is it a huge tourist trap I couldn't get over the number of tourist groups. (I could get in the brothel building, because of them. )What you can see is a 1x1.5Km grid of streets and buildings mostly terraced together.

- Then I jumped on the metro to Herculeum.. It's a much better site to visit .. Being more compact less touristy and described as the "Beverly Hills" of the time .. Every other building is a luxury villa with some fantastic feature like impressive fresco, mosaics or architectural feature.

- Then clock ticking I jumped on the metro to go 40 minutes to Palermo and go around the main archaeological museum : still mostly boring glass case stuff.. Are some people really interested in ceramics ? .. I couldn't give a toss.
- What is striking is some of the huge statues, complex mosaics and frescoes .. Again cos of the wonder of their skill, but some of the sratues turn out to be copies of Greeks works from hundreds of years before.
- I walked back through Napolis main tourist street.. As always in Italy it pretty ugly due to there being many old buildings which are not maintained. Got back to camping at 9.30pm.

- One of my toothcaps broke off as I chewed salami and it seems the tooth is knackered so I'll have to fix that sometime.

Opinion - I understand what the Italian Dream is About
- When you see some impressive frescos, mosaics or architectural features in Pompei or Herculeum there is this "Hey wow, this is incredible" feeling as you wonder at the sheer skill and sophistication of these guys 2000 years ago.. And how it took 1500 years more to get anything like back up to the same level

Opinion - 90% of Tourists Affected with this cancer.
-They all see to have this terrible black tumour swelling out of their right hands... The growth ends in a tube of glass

.... Why the F are they always taking photos ?
- What's the point ? .. I almost never take pictures..every image you want are already all on the internet anyway... Yes places are striking, but if you hear a Shakespeare line you don't need to write it in your own handwriting, or record a Beatles song in your own voice.

- STRANGELY - At Pompei at least 2 people were deliberately taking pictures of me ..What's that about ? I'm neither so beautiful or ugly to be notable .. I overheard some Italian say "Van Gogh is over there"

Mon - Macdonalds and BT Wireless are conspiring to drive me insane
- Bad Day I wasted 3 hours just trying to open 1 email. Monday pm everything was working fine, then I accidentally deleted the guidebook file from my phone. "No problem I have it in my email I'll just download it". But rather bizarrely the Macdonalds wi-fi network would not let me download that file.. Try and try again and it spreads worse now not letting me access that email at all.. OK I'll just try again later ...walk 4Km to Scafati and back ..no still same problem ..try and try again ... Tuesday morning before I Buy anything from Macdonalds I have to be sure that the wifi works properly.. No still can't access that mail and after I try again and again ..it just kicks me off the network.

Tue - Mega walk to Vesuvius
- After walking all the way to Macdonalds I decide to go to the Boscoreale Archaeological museum. The bus was impossible to figure out so I walked in 25 minutes. I didn't go in cos it was not free .. Instead I decided to walk to Mount Vesuvius. Not possible in a straight line cos of the train tracks, but I found the way to the base in 40 minutes. I followed paths up through the forest .. I was about to give up when suddenly I came to a path which led to the main road up. Walking made me realise how far Pompei is from the mount and it's crator..even in a straight line it must be 7-8Km .. So the explosion which buried Pompei metres deep in lava and ash must have been huge. Same old mountain walking experience where you think you'll soon get to the top of the tree line and then top of the mountain. After 2 hours I came out of the base tree line, and could see there was another treeline and then the base of the cone. After nother 40 minutes I cleared the 2nd treeline, but that was enough. It was 5.30pm I'd already see the views south and west along the coast almost to Naples... Pompei was so far away I could only see it before I got to the base .. And I have been on better more active volcano cones before.. And walking on lava stone is not good.

- Bus Back - NOT OK my ankles are knackered so I'll walk down to the base and get the bus. After 90 minutes I am back to the beginning of the base. I wait 20 minutes at the bus stop .there is no info so I walk .. An old guy says Pompei is 3Km ... Wrong it was a least 3Km east to the turnoff then another 2Km south to the bell tower then past Macdonalds (wasting another 30 minutes trying to access their wifi) another 1Km to the campsite .. So now my ankles are completely knackered ... Bought local red spumante wine for incredible €1 per litre.

Wed - Sorrento and Castelmamare di Stabia
- a good day ! Walking down the street I find a free wifi network and download in 2 minutes that file that Macdonalds won't let me access.

- I'm not really interested in tourist towns, but Sorrento is an easy 30 minute metro from the campsite, so I'll go and see. Even the woman at the tourist office says there is not much more than a small old town, it's the view across the sea to Vesuvius which is the main thing. Walk around, nothing really special except crowds of tourists.

- On the way back I stop at Castelmamare - A functioning ship contruction town. Walking south I didn't find much special : Roman bath ruins appeared to be inside the closed port and the castle was closed. On the north side of town are some archaeological sites I didn't have time to go.

Thu -
- Just walked - found free wifi - big Supermarket etc

Easter now so I'll try to get away from holiday crowds ..first go NW of Naples ..some Roman sites ..then maybe walk Appian way


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