After visiting a city that was completely covered by the ash of Mt. Vesuvius, we had to go see the actual mountain that blew its top and caused such devastation. The views from up top were amazing, with Naples sprawling out below.
Here are the bigs walking around part of the trail that leads around the rim of the crater. Steam is constantly released from inside. My students posed with me and we all did our best to not squint in the extremely bright Italian sun. This was as far as we could go on our hike, so we turned around and headed back down. Visiting Mt. Vesuvius was Carson’s favorite part of the trip, and it had been the one thing he had specifically requested that we see. (Instead of buying the “volcanic rock” at the gift stands, my boys each picked up a rock from the trail and carried them home.) As we descended we saw a tour group taking a serious hike around the other edge of the crater. I was happy with the parts we were able to see from the trail!
Do you see the pier that sticks out into the water in the very center of the image? Keep that in mind. I’m going to talk about that in a minute. This isn’t the most flattering photo of our B&B but it was the only picture I got. Sorry! The window on the second floor, just to the right of the center window, was our mini-balcony. I would set a chair out there and sip coffee, watching the events of the square below. How can I say this delicately… The area wasn’t the most attractive we’ve visited. Everywhere we drove/walked looked a little like the picture below. Not a luxurious area of Italy by any means.
On our trip to Italy Matt and I were working hard at keeping the weight we had lost off. We ran many of the days and one of the days in Pompeii I ran this route and there were some absolutely stunning views, in spite of the fact that most of what I saw more closely resembled the above image.
Look below and you’ll see the pier I mentioned above. From our B&B I ran all the way past the above spots, only stopping long enough to take a few pictures. When I got to this spot, I took another one, not knowing that I’d eventually make my way to the very end of that pier. When we made it to Vesuvius, you could see this pier from way up there! Really fun!
What I think we’re doing today:
Beach fun!! But more importantly, if you’re a kid, is that tonight is the night we plan to exchange gifts. We are going to have a big breakfast for dinner, then open gifts. Seems like a great finale to our week at the beach.
Yesterday we went to Charleston to pick up the Silver Surfer. It is so nice to have our own car back but I have to say, driving a 15-passenger van is appealing when it comes to hauling around my family plus anyone else. Now we’re back to having to take multiple vehicles anytime we go anywhere with someone else.
As a celebration we had dinner at Cracker Barrel. Everything we ate was SO good and our waitress was fantastic. How’d we thank her? We forgot to tip. We tipped NOTHING. Oh, I felt so bad! By the time we realized it we were an hour away and not about to turn around. I called the store, spoke with a manager, and they found our waitress. I tipped and then GENEROUSLY gave more in the spirit of Christmas and “I’m SO SORRY!” She came out better in the end for our mistake, but I’m sure she was initially disappointed that we had left nothing. It was a totally brain fart on our part!