Oct 23, 2014

POMPEII

We arrived from our sleeper train at about 6 am in Naples. We just hung out at the train station and got breakfast and waited for our tour bus to come get us. We signed up for a tour of Pompeii and Mt. Vesuvius. We figured there would be a lot of history so the best way to understand it all would be through a tour. Unfortunately, our tour guide's english was quite broken, so I would say we understood MOST of the things we learned about Pompeii. In 79 A.D. Mt Vesuvius erupted, you can see the volcano in the background of some of these photos. It's said that the volcano was twice the size before it exploded. It covered Pompeii and pushed the sea out further. The water used to come right up to the city of Pompeii. The city was covered in ash and debris. 1,500 years later, excavators started to uncover it. They are still excavating today. The city was preserved so well because there was no moisture or air in the 10+ feet of ash covering it.
They had a class system, so the lower class lived at the bottom of the hill and the richer you were, the higher up on the hill you lived.
Because they used animals as their transportation, the roads got messy with animal droppings, so they would open their water drains at the top of the hill and let the water rush down and wash the streets. So they had these stepping stones so they could still cross the street. And you can see the wagon wheel marks in the stone.
 {a pizza oven}
 This was a water fountain, they didn't have street signs so they used these faces as the street markers.
 {the last mosaic left that is still intact}
 I think it would be scary living this close to a huge volcano..
While excavating, they found some vacant spots in the ash where the people were. Their bodies had decomposed but the ash acted like a sort of cast, so that was still intact. They filled the space with plaster and then had these molds of people's bodies.
Then we ate lunch with our tour group. Naples is famous for its pizza and it was delicious. Then we hiked the top of Mt. Vesuvius.
It was a mile long hike to the top. We had hiked so many mountains in the past few days, why not add a volcano to our repertoire. I'm pretty sure most of our tour group didn't make it to the top because it was kind of difficult. I kept thinking how mad I would be if I spent all that money on the tour and couldn't even make the hike.
 It was cool looking down in the volcano, but it was so big we couldn't actually see the bottom.
 {the direction where Pompeii was, but it was too hazy to be able to actually see it}
 {looking down into the volcano}
 {Naples and the Mediterranean}
Then it was a mile back down. We walked a lot on our trip but were able to see some amazing places that not too many people in the world get to see. And we were glad we weren't any older because of how exhausting it was for us. It was so interesting learning about the history of Pompeii and thinking that these structures were around when Christ was on the earth. Between here and Rome I learned a lot about the way of life in that ancient time. I feel like it has given me a new perspective when I read the scriptures. It helps me to understand why they may have done certain things.

Then we took a train from Naples back to Rome where we flew out early the next morning. We were so glad to take this trip together but missed our kids so much by the end. We just kept planning all the trips we will take with our kids now :)

See other stops on our trip to Europe: CopenhagenBrusselsVatican CityRomeVeniceMurano/BuranoCinque Terre, Pisa

Oct 22, 2014

PISA

Like I mentioned in my previous post, we hadn't planned on visiting the Leaning Tower of Pisa but realized we were only about an hour away. We jumped on a train from La Spezia to Pisa to spend a few hours there.
We saw this mountain range while on the train to Pisa. We were wondering why it was white because it was too warm to be snow we Googled it and found out that is where Michelangelo came to get stone for his statues. We took the Pisa S. Rossore stop on the train as opposed to the centro-where we were told to take by someone. We looked it up on a map and the leaning tower was just a 5 or so minute walk from the train stop.
You can climb up in to the tower but we were so exhausted from a long day of hiking that we just walked around. We went inside the church in the square and also watched a movie in the visitor's center about why the leaning tower is leaning. And all the work they have done to preserve it. It was pretty interesting. It started leaning by the time they were done with the fourth level because the ground used to be covered by the sea many years ago, so the ground was very sandy and soft. Eventually, people kept building it despite the fact that it was leaning.
 {there were so many people taking pictures like this man-so that it looks like he is holding up the leaning tower. It was so funny to see all of these people, many of whom got yelled at by the guards for going on the grass}
 Then we got some pizza at Ristorante Pizzeria Duomo with the leaning tower as our backdrop.
And some gelato for the train ride back to La Spezia.
{waiting at the train station}
We bought tickets for another sleeper train (before we left) from La Spezia to Naples. It was a long train ride so we figured it would be best as an overnight ride. Just like our experience taking an overnight train to Venice, we felt like it would have been better for us to just take an evening bullet train from Pisa to Naples and get to Naples really late at night. Because our train didn't leave La Spezia until about 11 pm. Then we found out it was delayed so it really left at like 11:30 pm. In the meantime, we were there in a closed train station just waiting with about 15 other people. Kind of creepy, kind of boring.

It had been a really long day for us so we were pretty tired. Luckily, this sleeper train was a private room, so just Danny and I shared it. I slept pretty well but Danny kept thinking we were going to run off the tracks-we didn't :)

See other stops on our trip to Europe: CopenhagenBrusselsVatican CityRomeVeniceMurano/Burano, Cinque Terre

Oct 21, 2014

SHARE IT LINK PARTY #137

Hello and welcome to this week's link party! Can't wait to see what you've been working on!
Here are some of my favorites from last week's party:
DIY Embellished Pumpkins from Blooming Homestead

Easy Halloween Pillow from So Much Better With Age

Caramel Apples from Dieters Downfall

 Halloween Ghost Hot Chocolate from Life is a Lullaby

Pumpkin Brownies from Purple Patch DIY

Party Rules:
1. Like The Winthrop Chronicles on Facebook
2. Become a follower of The Winthrop Chronicles 
3. Make sure to check out some of the other links before leaving
4. Link back to my blog, or grab a button and put it anywhere on your blog or post to share the love (link below)


This link party is for crafts, recipes or diy projects that YOU made. 

Remember to link to a specific post. Thanks!

So go ahead and SHARE IT!

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