Friday, October 04, 2019


Let me start by saying that for some reason I don't fully understand, Pompeii touched me in such an emotional way, I can't even describe it. The fact this place is real, the fact it once thrived with the daily hustle and bustle of people going about their lives, then being snuffed out and buried for centuries ... I was pretty overwhelmed. Being there was an experience I will never forget. I hope you'll enjoy this tiny tour through pictures.

This is where our tour began, the open area of the public baths. The baths were a place where people socialized, played sports, and even conducted business. Only the wealthy could afford a private bath in their home so they were few and far between.

Entrance to the baths

Some of the elaborate paintings still remain inside the baths. 

Streets of houses and shops. Amazing that the roads were so well made. Sure beats the asphalt and potholes we have to contend with today. LOL!!

Marble drinking fountain

The forum, i.e. public square, where city meetings were held, social events, and public celebrations.

Pottery, vessels, and other containers uncovered during the excavations.

So far, about 1500 casts were made of the estimated 2000 who perished in the eruption.

This final pic is just one of many signs pointing the way to the brothel. In case you forgot how to get there! LOL

There is so much more to this that I learned when researching Pompeii after I returned from my trip. It's amazing how much we know about the devastation that I sure don't remember ever hearing in World History class. It's truly fascinating, and also heartbreaking.

Friday, September 27, 2019

Bellissima Livorno Italia, Pisa

Beautiful Livorno, Italy

This time we are in Pisa. This is the entrance to the Bishop's quarters and the offices of the Archdiocese. It was the plaza area where our tour group met. I couldn't help but snag a pic with the bicycle parked out front. They use bicycles everywhere, it's just business as usual.

Sidewalk cafe in the Piazza dei Miracoli, the Field of Miracles. As you look to the right of where you stand to take this pic you see the tower, cathedral and the baptistry. 

Loved seeing the horses and buggies here in the Piazza.

The cathedral and tower.

The gorgeous leaning tower in all it's splendor. I love this shot as I got the sun giving it sort of a halo effect. Isn't it cool!

Cherub statue with the baptistry in the background.

There were SO MANY PEOPLE trying to hold up the tower. From every angle there were people with their arms out. I couldn't bring myself to help them. HAHA! 

Closer view of the base of the tower. Beautiful architecture everywhere. We sure don't have that in the U.S. People just don't realize how young our country is. Way too young to have any of this kind of man-made beauty that has stood for centuries.

The Baptistry of San Giovanni, John the Baptist. The incredible detail in these buildings is mind blowing. I mean, think about it - they didn't have power tools, you know! 

This graffiti greeted us as we got off the bus. I thought it was funny.

Particularly because, at just the right angle, the tower does look like it is not leaning!

River Arno, Florence
Quick bus tour along the river as we made our way back to the ship.

I love all the colorful homes along the river.

All of these white "frames" everywhere are ledges that will hold candles, in preparation for the celebration of Feast Day, June 24, in honor of patron saint, St. John, the Baptist. Every year the city organizes several cultural and folkloric events that end with a huge fireworks show.

This was the last day of our trip. There is so much more that we want to see and will, of course, have to plan another trip to include Florence, Rome and Venice - at least!

I will be posting once more with trip pictures of Pompeii in the coming days. It was so fascinating to learn so much about the city that was barely touched on in World History class. Pompeii pictures are in a separate album all their own as there were so many of them.

Hope you're enjoying my vacation! It was wonderful.

Friday, September 20, 2019

I'm back with more vacay pics

As promised, I have more cruise pics to share with you. They make me happy looking at them. I hope you are enjoying them also. 

This was the gorgeous sunset view from our cabin balcony as we left Gibraltar heading for Marseille, France.

We had a few sea days, which I absolutely love - I sleep better on ship than I do in my own bed! It's so relaxing and the beds are SO COMFY I can't even tell you!!! 

On our sea days we did a lot of this - Yahtzee and tasty adult beverages. Ok we did a lot of this EVERY day, but even moreso on sea days. LOL

Marseille, France
This is the Major Cathedral, the seat of the Archdiocese of Marseille

This statue of David sits in the middle of a roundabout in the city

39-foot gilded statue of La Bonne Mere (the good mother), at the top of Basilique Notre Dame de la Garde

Beaches at Marseille. 
There are not as many public beaches as there are privately owned.

A lovely glass of wine and some Yahtzee at the New Terresse sidewalk cafe, before the tour bus takes us back to the ship.

Genoa, Italy
The beaches of Boccadesse

Bell tower of Sant' Antonio di Boccadesse, which faces the beach

Lovely market in Genoa

At lunchtime we left the tour group and walked till we found this cute little cafe

White wine, caprese with homemade mozzarella, and beautiful scenery

 This is in Piazza de Ferrari, the financial district

Famous fountain on the Piazza - the old stock exchange building on the left

Gorgeous view from our balcony as we left the port at Genoa. It was a beautiful evening on the water.

Next installment, Pisa. See you soon!