Saturday, June 17, 2017

Europe 17 Day 22 & 23 The End

This is the final holiday post although there may be some things I might mention in the future about things I have not mentioned already.

I kind of wish we had taken the ship tour to Pompeii, or a private tour, at this last significant city we visited, aside from Rome where we just docked and shared a taxi van to the airport. Instead we wandered the streets of Naples, absorbing what we could, getting a little lost, as usual and cafe sitting. The further we went into the city, the cheaper the food and drinks were.

It is interesting to contrast Naples to the other place we visited in Italy, Livorno and Pisa. Livorno and Pisa seemed peaceful and orderly, with traffic following lines marked on roads and generally following the road laws and showed patience with the huge numbers of tourists. This did not seem to be at all the case in Naples, and I thought it was chaotic. At least one multi laned road had no marked lanes yet the traffic managed to keep moving. Perhaps there is a lesson to be learnt here. The better the lane guidance system, the more rules there are, the less the time to play with phones, radios and music players when driving. Believe me, from what I saw in Naples, full concentration was required when driving.

Naples was ok. I mean by that I did not get the bad feeling as I did in Marseille, but for mine, Naples was just a big and very busy city. No doubt it has its delights, not visible or noticed by us in perhaps the six hours we were onshore.

Shortly before docking we passed by Mount Vesuvius and nearby Pompeii. Naples is also the stepping off point to get to get to the Isle of Capri.


I was watching Naples as the sun rose and slowly lit the city starting with the dominating St Elmo's Castle.


The Art Deco port building was very attractive.


A mural within the port building.


This was to be the site of an underground train station right at the port, however construction was stalled when Roman ruins were found.


The first road for us to cross after leaving the port, with disused tram tracks and wires. Naples does have trams after almost or completely doing away with them and the network is now expanding.


The was a long boardwalk past the diggings and then we passed Castel Nuovo. We then became most horribly tangled up with tour buses unloading a gazillion school children, no doubt out to explore the wonders of Naples. I wonder if the local government has ever thought of providing a proper off the street tourist bus parking area where people can get off a bus and not be in the middle of traffic. I noted, no child was killed or maimed.


I was very impressed by this building, Galleria Umberto. We walked through and out the other side.




It was time for coffee and some free wifi.


Fountain of the Artichoke!!!


We walked along a wide 'carless' street which has many narrow streets running off to the left or right, full of shops, cafes, bars and residences. Cars are banned from inner Naples, haha. There were many. It is a lawless city. The illegal vendors pack up as the police approached on foot and reappear as soon as they have passed. It is all just a game.


We had a panini and coffee at this cafe, which was much cheaper than the one closer to the port.


My fashion tip for our next season. Very 70s. Of course they will fit you. Of course your bum won't look big.


Will this be the latest men's hair fashion to hit Australia? There was no doubt that people we saw in Naples who appeared to be locals had a great sense of style.


R's sister K had managed to find two gorgeous dresses for our niece twins and bought them. I did not ask how many euros she paid. I bet quite a few.


Nearly back to the ship. R, K and J sat on a wall for a little break while I examined the ticket machine at the bus stop.


The front of the port building. A clock is set into one tower but what is the other dial? If you can't see it well enough, the numbers are 70 to 79. Please someone tell me what that odd dial is all about.


The next day we arrived on time in Rome and we all shared a taxi with another couple to Rome Airport, quite a long way from the port. K&J went to their hotel near the airport where they would stay overnight before returning to England and R and myself went straight to airport where we departed mid afternoon. It was a very nice new double deck plane back to Dubai, and then a very old plane back to Melbourne, arriving about 10pm. Rome airport is massive. We used a train to get to our gate from the main terminal. It has the rather obvious name of Leonardo da Vinci in an area called Fiumicino, which I have no idea how to say. Wombat???


Security was strong, with soldiers at the airport with machine guns at the ready. They looked so serious, but an old lady waltzed up to them and asked directions and they were helpful and smiling. Once she left, the stern and intimidating don't fuck with me faces immediately returned.

While Italy apparently accepts same sex unions, I was left wondering how far this extends. At border control was a male and female couple with a child. We were standing side by side ready to be next. The family left and we were called forward. No, you, meaning me, go back. R on his own was called forward and then I was next. She was not too easily and instantly recognise we were family too, I suppose, but wouldn't people travelling together usually be called forward together, especially if it was only two people. That was the first time it has ever happened. In fact in Paris some years ago at British border security, we were admonished for not coming forward together. Then R was queried why he didn't use his British/Euro passport when travelling. There is no point in him getting through quicker than I do as he then has to wait for me, so he travels using his Australian passport. And he is a proper Aussie .

A little art at the airport


Close up?


17 comments:

  1. Andrew great photos and an excellent report from trip as usual. Thanks . Security in Italian airport was stronhg I remember it from Catania last year but it is good in those unsafe times in Europe

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    1. Gosia, I am trying to remember if there have been Moslem terrorist incidents in Italy, and I can't recall that there has been.

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  2. Foo-Mee-Chee-No.

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    1. Thanks Victor. Easy once you know.

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    2. I would have thought Fewmeecheeno, as in Fi-u-mi-cino; the fi-u being like few, but I happy to be wrong if that's the case.

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  3. Loved photos nine and ten in particular. Pompei? I think I would have taken that tour.
    I have thoroughly enjoyed these posts and will have to trawl back through the ones I missed when hunkered down with the lurgy.

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    1. EC, sorry to hear you were so unwell. It was a wonderful building and so light inside.

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  4. Naples looks ok, and fancy no white or yellow lines on the road - imagine that here in Australia, what a mess it would be in some areas..
    Odd about the 'couple's' at the airport.

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    1. Margaret, it is hard to imagine but the chaotic traffic we saw seemed to work......for Neapolitans. The airport thing concerned R more than it did me. Nothing changes my hate for airports.

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  5. Galleria Umberto in Naples was amazing, based (I am assuming) on Vittorio Emanuele in Milan some 15 years later. The central dome and the glass covered wings leave visitors breathless, every time!

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    1. Hels, they look so similar and yes, quite amazing. It seems the Milan one was the original.

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  6. 70-79? Umm, temperature? Barometer? Years of construction?
    The Art Deco port building is really lovely and I think I'd enjoy wandering through the Galleria. I'd probably have to learn Italian first though.

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    1. River, today I did some research on 70 79 and came up with nothing, above that the building was ordered by Mussolini and there are threatening panels on the facade. Did Europe use Fahrenheit temps in 1936

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  7. Dammit! Now I have to pack my suitcase and head off to the airport! Holiday over!!

    Thanks for sharing, Andrew. :)

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    1. Arm chair traveller then Lee? In my heart, so am I. Travelling is hard work.

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  8. I'm definitely an armchair traveler these days Andrew, can't wait to go on your next trip 😀 What did you think of Rome, or did you just use it to get your flight home. I found it a bit pretentious, full of it's own supposed importance! The Art Deco port building and mural are fab!

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    1. Grace, we didn't see Rome; straight from the port to the airport. I've never had a great desire to see Italy. R wants to see Venice....who knows. I could easily go back to Portugal and Barcelona.

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