I just got back after my way too long 15 hour tour of Pompeii and Naples. It was my last bus tour and I have to say, I’m not in the least sad they are done. Nope, not even a smidgen.
But before I get to today… I did write a nice long blog post about my trip to the Vatican and Pantheon last night, but my blogger app trashed the post. So here is my short version of yesterday.
I visited the Pantheon in the morning and was amazed. I visited the Vatican in the afternoon and was even more amazed. (I guess I can say that about everywhere I visit in Rome.) Oh, and I bought some beautiful italian boots in between.
In the Pantheon, I loved how the only light is from the huge hole in the ceiling. And it lights the whole place. Cool. What an amazing building.
At the Vatican, I got a private tour of the museum and saw some true masterpieces of Greek and Roman statues and Renaissance paintings. I loved finally seeing the Sistine chapel. I have been dreaming of seeing this piece of art since I was a child flipping through the National Geographic issue on its restoration. A dream come true. It’s everything I wanted it to be, and more. I have seen so many beautiful ceilings in the last month, but this one takes the cake. Pure awesomeness.
Another great treat was St. Peter’s Basilica. It’s ginormous! The art within is so cool. I loved the wall murals made out of glass mosaics. So intricate and exact. Stunning. Michelangelo’s Pieta wasn’t too shabby either.
Cut back to today… This was certainly the longest bus tour. From 6:30 this morning to 10:00 at night! UGH! The tour was doing three tours from the same bus at the same time so there was a lot of waiting. It took us over 2 hours to get to Naples and then we got our shitty tour guide who was an ass and sexist as hell. (I firmly believe all Italian tour guides are in the “family.”) They did a tour of Naples in the bus. Not sure why as they didn’t show us anything but garbage and squalor. Then it was onto a coral factory where they tried to sell us cameos (I guess for the grandmas). Then they took us for a lunch that lasted over an hour and wasn’t good. I just wanted to see Pompeii!
We finally did get to Pompeii at 3:00 p.m.! WTF. Then they gave us 2 hours to go through this massive, beautiful place that is like a maze. I couldn’t stay with our ass tour guide, so I wandered off with a couple from Wales. We tried to see as much as we could in the short time we had. Didn’t see much, we needed at least three to four more hours. What a shame.
Pompeii is amazing. (Yes, I realize I say that a lot. I need a thesaurus.) The bodies laying in the position they died in is sad and fascinating. To see a whole village completely destroyed by Mt. Vesuvius and yet completely preserved was quite a treat.
The nice thing was I had lunch with a lovely couple from Wales, Mark and Carol. I also had a great conversation with a young woman from D.C. traveling with her grandma from Long Island. They were a hoot.
I’m too tired to write more, but I will be back in Canada soon and only too willing to discuss my travels in person. So please ask when I’m back!
Two more days to go.
Listened to these guys for awhile at Piazza Navona: