Train strike!

It’s 22h10, and it’s 22 degrees but it feels warmer and it’s been a long 8 day in the heat that ended up in Pompei instead of Herculaneum because of a sudden train strike – but I go with the flow.



Crickey, there’s so many words to remember, so many place names, so many stations, so much Italian, I wish Luca was here, he remembers this stuff, me, they just go in one ear and out the other, thank god for the iPhone. I carry two power packs and a second phone.
Today I wanted to go to Herculaneum, a new alternative to Pompei but the train strike meant limited services, I sat at the station reading my book for an hour wondering if this strike would end. Took a stroll through the local market with all that food out in the open, there don’t seem to be any flies, but NZ H&S would definitely be shutting this down, pronto. Could not believe there’s wine for NZ$2.50. Some Treni services did commence, but Pompei was the only option, no stopping at Ercolano for Herculaneum.
It’s overwhelming walking through Pompei, it seems much bigger than when I last visited with Julia 30 years ago. I wonder what was really going on here pre AD79. There’s a new exhibition focusing on the underclass, the slaves, and it’s no surprise that it’s easy to build an empire if you have the benefit of free labour. Infant mortality was 40%. Yes, I did stumble upon those fresco’s. I also visited a grand house just outside the Pompei  walls, where they made wine, and I chatted to the people working there. Generally, the people of Naples see themselves as separate to other Italians, it’s mentioned often. I eves-dropped on a few of the audio-guide people, but who needs that? For me it’s all about enjoying the moment, of just being there, gulping down water and wondering how long I can last.

Forgot to mention the bike tour, not quite what I was expecting, mainly on urban roads with wine session under the pergola, but a friendly bunch of Sarf Africans, Brits and Norwegians.

Author: Tony Richards

This was originally a travel journal to share with family and friends but when home again it became a general blog about anything that came to mind – but now I'm travelling again, this time wandering the streets of Italy – do check in. Ciao baby!

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