Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Naples and Pompeii!

Okay so now I am all caught up again, today we arrived in Naples, immediately left, and got back again.

We got into Napoli on the train from Rome at 11:30 (after just narrowly making our train by mere minutes, stupid cab driver) and went strait to the ticket area to get tickets to the Pompeii Ruins. We then checked our bags into the station lockers and headed out to the ruins.

Pompeii is so cool. We got in and explored around, they just have this ruined city that you walk around and explore in. Parts are roped off, and there are ongoing excavations in certain places, but the map (which we didn't get but we saw) is just a city map with street names and that is how you navigate. There are just floating columns, archways that lead to nothing, collapsed buildings, stairwells that just stop, altars, water collecting pools, it was really cool. And then there is a section where they have stacks and shelves upon shelves of artifacts (mostly vases) coated in volcanic ash. And mixed in, are the bodies. Almost each section of artifacts has a human body in the middle, frozen in their last moment of life in volcanic material. There were around 5 people, and one dog in a twisted and painful looking pose. After that we explored more of the city until it was time to find our way back out.

On our way out we got more gelati, yay!

So after leaving Pompeii we got on the train back to Naples again and met a really nice Aussie couple and we talked the whole ride back about traveling, McDonalds prices around the world, etc. We found out that we were both planning on going to the same pizzaria at some point tonight, so we worked together using our maps and phone internet to find the exact location of the restaurant. We thought we might have run into them, but we ended up not going until late so we missed them I suppose. But they were really awesome.

So we got back into Napoli Centrale, got our bags, and hiked the long trek to the hostel. We got there, had to take a really shady looking rickety elevator to the 6th floor of a big building complex and low and behold our hostel, which was up to at least the 7th floor as well, since our room is there. The hostel is Bella Capri and it is a really awesome hostel. Our room mates are from New Orleans and are doing a very similar trip to ours, but not completely in the same order and not quite as extensive, and in 5 weeks instead of almost 6.

We hung out for a while in the hostel (free wifi, woo! Hence my 2 earlier blog posts about Rome finally) and then went out around 8 to find that supposed "World's Best Pizza", at Antiqua Pizzeria de Michelle.

Oh, and while I'm on the subject of Naples... this is the dirtiest city I have ever seen. It makes Manhattan look like you can eat off the pavement. There is just trash everywhere. On the streets, sidewalks, huge amounts of garbage. It literally looks like a crop duster dropped loads of garbage across the whole city. I did not get a good picture because I was so surprised as I walked around I didn't think of it until we were almost at the hostel. Maybe tomorrow I can get a better picture, it's insane! Anyway...

We finally found it, a very small place off the main road area, and it had a big crowd out front. We actually had to take a number and wait a while, but luckily they have a fast turn over. We got our seats and ordered our pizza. Now at Pizzeria de Michelle you only have 2 options - Margarrita or Marinara. We all ordered the first, Jen medium and the rest of us Maxi. It was only 5€ for the largest pie, which was about the equivalent to a US medium, but for one person. Pizzas in Italy are cheap and usually personal sized, but man Naples has cheap and good pizza. But it was not the best I ever had, and it was actually a little unpleasant after all was said and done because it was super greasy and thing crust so it kind of fell apart into a soup in the middle and we all felt kinda bad after, but it was very delicious during.

After we ate we made our way back to the hostel, and now it is off to bed (it just hit midnight so, today I guess) the plan is to visit the beautiful near by island of Capri.


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