Let’s just say it’s The Rainy Season…

I didn’t sleep a wink all night because of 1) the huge (I mean HUGE) thunderstorms going on most of the night, 2) the fact that it was too hot in our room, & 3) the intermittent barking of 2 or 3 dogs all night. The barking dogs no doubt included a little yellow stray dog who seems to always be hanging around here. The first time we saw him he was lying on top of the castle entrance-way wall, & we thought he belonged to someone walking by. But, apparently, he belongs to no one, as he was curled up this a.m. in front of the hotel door. I named him “Little Pietro.”

We were picked up at 8:45 this a.m. by the tour co. They drove us & 6 others over to, first, a company, called Donadio, that carves cameos out of shells & stone. There was an old man in there (named Vicenzo) who was the major carver. He had been working there for about 60 yrs., & he gave us a short demonstration. He was really cute & friendly & so, of course, we just had to buy one of his beautiful cameos. We took his picture too.

After that, we went to the old ruins of the city of Pompeii, which was built about 2,700 yrs. ago. It was completely covered in volcanic ash after Mt. Vesuvius erupted in 79 a.d. About 10,000 people were killed, either by the ash, the heat, or the poisonous gas. It was, needless to say, very interesting. We took LOTS of pics. Since it was raining off & on most of the day, we were all beginning to get cold and soaked, even though we did have our umbrellas handy. (It seemed colder in Pompeii than in Naples–it must have been a bit higher elevation or something.)

After that, we were served lunch, which consisted of spaghetti with clams, salad with scampi and calamari, & vanilla gelato for dessert.

We were then handed off to another driver, who spoke very little English, although that didn’t stop him from talking & talking & talking….

He drove us to the next town which had been buried during the 79 a.d. eruption of Mt. Vesuvius, which was Herculaneum. (The Italians, however, call it “Ercolano.” Why all of us don’t call it the same thing is beyond me. Can you figure that out?? For ex., why do us English-speakers call it Italy, when the Italians call it “Italia??” The same with Spain & “Espana.” It just seems to me that we should call it whatever they call it, since it’s their country & they’re the ones who named it…)

Tomorrow we have a long day of traveling via train to Sicily.  We hope you all had a Happy Thanksgiving today!