Wednesday, May 11, 2016

In the Shadow of Mount Vesuvius

Today is our last day in Italy - Thomas and I head back home early tomorrow morning. But we still have things to do today. We were up at 6:00am and went to breakfast at 7:00am. The view from the breakfast room on the 11th floor was nice - it could of been better if the sky had been clear, but it was cloudy and rainy. We could see the dome of the Galleria Umberto I that we visited yesterday. After breakfast we returned to our room where I worked on editing some photos.
After about an hour we got our things then headed to the lobby. We met the group at 9:00am and then boarded the bus for Herculaneum. It was about a 35 minute drive to the visitor center for the ruins.
We went in and waited while Linda met our guide and got the tickets and while some people went to the restroom. The place was really crowded today and that made it not as great of a visit. Our guide - Massimo - got us started and we headed down the path and stopped in front of Scavi di Ercolano while our guide gave us some history.
We then walked through the maze of ruins and got more information as we went along. Unfortunately the crowds made it hard to hear our guide and he went way too fast for all of us to keep up. With that being said it was still a great visit. Seeing a place that was devastated by Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79 and was preserved all these years really puts things in perspective. We spent about an hour and a half going through the ruins but I wish they had given us more time to explore on our own. At 12:30pm we were back on the bus headed back to Naples.

Il “Disinganno” di Francesco Queirolo
We had a half hour at the hotel to get ready and then we all met in the lobby to go to get something to eat and also go the museum to see The Veiled Christ. First we walked to Opere teatro del gusto where we had sandwiches and bruschetta. The we walked to Museo Cappella Sansevero. Linda went and got the tickets and then we went in to the museum. The Veiled Christ is in the center of the room and there are many other statues all around the room. Unfortunately the place is all about money and you can't take pictures - they want you to buy books and postcards in the gift shop. I can't say enough about the statue - it is amazing. The detail is exquisite and lifelike - it looks as if you could just pull the veil right off. There are other equally great pieces in the room.
The Veiled Christ (Giuseppe Sanmartino, 1753)
 We spent about a half hour in the museum and then we headed out again - this time to get some dessert. We stopped at Leopolde Infante and had some gelato. We returned back to the hotel and Thomas and I took some time to get things packed. Everything was packed except for the stuff we needed for tonight and tomorrow morning and the clothes we were wearing home. Then at 6:00pm we met the group in the lobby to go to one last dinner together. We only walked a short distance to the restaurant from the hotel - for some reason I don't really remember the name of the restaurant but I think it is Osteria da Antonio. We had a nice maeal and visit and got to say our goodbyes. Seven of us had to get up early in the morning to catch flights between 6:30am and 7:00am. Back in the room Thomas and I got some last minute things done and now we are going to bed - the alarm is set for 2:30am.

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