Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Pompei Scavi, Italy

Yesterday we ventured out on our own to Pompei Scavi.  The night before we watched the BBC documentary of what happened when Mt. Vesuvius blew.  It was interesting and I highly recommend it, especially if you decide to visit.  The train ride there was about an hour. We took the train from Pozzuoli to Naples central station (Naples, Garabaldi) there we caught the train to Pompei.
The tickets into the museum were 11 Euros each (no discount for children, unless you are from an EU country).
We really like the Steve Reeves' Italy tour guide (well my brother and his wife really like it and we agree, it was very helpful). He mentioned to buy the Pompei guide in the book store and take it along with you during your walking trip.
One of the houses with some steps.  Jason's stepping out of a little alcove.
Ampitheatre, the guide book said it was built in the Hellinistic style.  
 It's amazing how these cobblestone streets from so long ago are so well-preserved.  It reminded me of the streets in the older section of Naples, and we wondered if this area of Pompei would have looked similar to Naples today if a Volcano hadn't erupted and buried it.
 Mt. Vesuvius....doesn't look all that intimidating.  
 Picturesque well
 I finally let someone else have the camera...more cityscapes. Below, and you can't see was a gathering area for people during intermission, before and after the entertainment from the ampitheatre. In the last years of Pompei, it's where the gladiators bunked.

 A fountain.  There were some that were working fountains with modern spigots that people could use now.

 Beautifully done and preserved mosaic
 Another mosaic
 The people of Pompei would flood the streets in order to clean them.  They placed these stepping stones periodically through the town so that people could cross. One stone for small streets, two for the larger streets, three for the main thorough fairs.  There was enough clearance and room between the stones and streets ends in order for a chariot to pass.
 One of the bath houses.  There were forty bakeries and thirty brothels in Pompei. Just in case that's ever a question on Jeopardy you can answer it, otherwise not information anyone needs to know.
 One of the bakeries

 Me with Mt. Vesuvius in the back ground. This was the entrance to one of the Forums.
 The Forum. This was Jake's expression, before we decided to bribe give them financial incentive to have a better attitude. 10$ each if they didn't complain the rest of the trip and another 10$ each if they were enthusiastic and asked thoughtful questions.  

 I'm always amazed how nature will find away, here's a small bush growing out of a ruined column.
 Top of a column from the Temple of Venus.
 The Basilica is the courthouse next to the Forum.  Churches that we call Basilicas took their floor plan from structures such as these.  I love it when I learn something new.  
 This was from a vendor. This little hole would have fire in it and they would put food in the top to keep in warm.

 One of the entrances to Pompeii   At night they would close the bigger gate (archway) and only keep the smaller one open, to help protect its citizens.  The bay of Naples actually came very close to this area during the time of Pompeii.  The guide book said you could even see some of the rings where the boats would moor. I couldn't see them though.  I didn't look really hard either.

 Another temple, can't remember to whom?
 Look, he's smiling, our incentive program is working so far.
 Next to the ampitheatre, this is where people would gather and in the last years of Pompei, the gladiators bunked.
 Jason and I thought it was interesting that they built patterns within the brick. We wondered if this was a decoration or an actual directional sign.

 Another shot of the Basilica
 Isaac hanging out on one of the 'benches' over two thousand years're not going to find that in the States.  
 Temple to Hercules and Mt. Vesuvius
 One of the things they did to increase the safety and longevity of the structure is to put the stones in a diagonal pattern.

 Leaving Pompei and back in Pozzuoli where my brother, son and his wife live. They have the middle unit in this building.  The siblings and their families of the person who owns this unit live in the one above and below.  It's a very cultural phenomenon that families live is such close proximity to each other. 

Today it's the museum. It's raining so no hiking Mt. Vesuvius for us.  Tomorrow and Friday - Rome.


Rock Chef said...

Thanks for the tour!

It is great to get right into history like that, to see what people made 2000 years ago!

Holly from 300 Pounds Down said...

These pictures are fantastic!!! What an awesome experience this is for your family. I love this!