|Nigel and I at Pompeii|
|Pizzeria/Restaurant (slap in the middle of Pompeii) but served good food and much required!|
|Me/Hadriana at Pompeii near the Forum|
|Plaster cast of one of Pompeii bodies|
|Plaster cast of poor, chained up dog|
|Another plaster cast body surrounded by amphorae (jars)|
|Onsite museum/storage area|
|Temple to Apollo (Sun God)|
|Inscription on a handbasin in the Forum Baths|
|One of the bathing areas - Forum Baths|
|Decoration on ceiling in one of the bathing areas and the tops of the terracotta Telamons (the figures) in the tepidarium (warm room)|
|The famous house of the Faun|
|Examples of mosaics on columns (in National Museum of Archaeology in Naples) - up close they are fabulous!|
|Look at the carved huge stone blocks! - reminds me of masonry on Hadrian's Wall|
|Vesuvius - that world famous volcano|
|Our guided group - Mariano, the guide, is in white with his back to us|
|Looking out over one part of Pompeii (the oldest residential district - region VI - the part we saw)|
|Pompeii bike scheme map|
|Inscription on a Monument in The Street of the Tombs|
|Funerary Monument on the Street of the Tombs|
|The Street of the Tombs|
|Phallic symbol (built into walls, buildings, drains to bring good luck/ward off the evil eye)|
|Mosaic floor (I got obsessed by the different types of floor patterns)|
|The Macellum (see below)|
|The Macellum - a covered foodstuffs market area|
|Looking at the bottom of an oven in a house/villa|
|Inscription on edge of The Forum|
|Edge of The Forum|
|The small or covered theatre (The Odeion)|
|The Gladiators' Barracks|
|The Great Theatre (open but could be covered with an awning)|
We were, in fact, at Pompeii for one whole day - walking almost non stop for seven hours. I'm glad I was wearing boots. The streets are/were quite high as they allowed for all manner of rubbish to flow down the streets (including water) during Roman times - hence the stepping stones.
I had quick glimpses of things. Pompeii does need repeated visits to try to make sense of it all. It is enormous and is a city. No doubt about it. I wanted to go and see the amphitheatre but at the end of a very hot, sunny day...I knew that I could not make that. So we made do with the two theatres which are spectacular. There were many villas which I missed seeing. Lots of the baths were closed - for restoration and/or a much needed rest. Apparently about 2.5 million people visit Pompeii per annum (each year)...that figure does not surprise me in the slightest. There were plenty there the day we were there and it was 30 degrees in the shade.
It was busier in the morning and the crowds thinned out over the day. There were many guides there...each had their different styles. Some with umbrellas, sticks and so on. Some with microphones attached directly to sound systems which their group could listen to. Others had the site's own auto guided system (which most museums now have).
I was very amused by seeing a restaurant in the middle of the site. Apparently Bill Clinton ate there when the G7 visited. (A special garden outside the restaurant was created for that occasion.) Nevertheless after hours of walking, walking and sight seeing - it was much needed and did, indeed, sell delicious food amongst other things.
I enjoyed seeing it all. Furthermore the excitement of having seen it has still not faded. It just makes me want to investigate further and know even more about the Romans. It all helps me imagine in my head what Roman life must have been like although when I compared Pompeii to Herculaneum (which was covered by mud and not ash by the eruption of Vesuvius) in 79AD I'm convinced that Pompeii is much bigger and posher than Herculaneum. Each has its different points and contrasts. Each teaches us variations on a theme. There are at least two sets of photos that I want to put on this blog some time soon to demonstrate something.
Pompeii is worth a visit. If you can - read up about it beforehand. It's an assault on the senses - in the best possible way.