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Our tour today is to visit the amazing Ruins of Pompeii to see the remaining structures and how
people lived centuries ago. Boarding our coach in Sorrento we left and wound our way along the brilliant Amalfi
coastline and soon the magnificent Mount Vesuvius appeared on the skyline. On the 26th August, 79AD this mountain erupted spewing
volcanic mud and lava all over the town, catching the people of Pompeii at their everyday tasks. We entered this archaelogical site
and when receiving our tickets were given a little book that explains what a lot of the sites are. very helpful! We did have a
very experienced tour guide and he gave us ongoing commentary as we walked around. There were about 20,000 people here and evidence shows that
the Roman way of life indicated that they had a very complete lifestyle including theatres, public baths, shops and they
embraced art in many facets of their everyday activities. We entered through one of the seven gates of Pompeii and soon came across the
Temple of Venus. There is not much left today but indications are that it was made of marble along with natural stone. The
Basilica was quite close by and the remains of the columns in the centre show the size it may have been. The portico with a section
of the second floor were incredible to see. The Forum was next in our sights and it was the city's main square and and such
a very busy part of the city.
The Forum Granary had some plaster casts of people and animals that have been recovered from the site and we found
them incredible down to the expressions on their faces or frozen movement of their bodies. The actual remains have been relocated in
other places because of their historical importance. Other pieces of goods are here such as jugs, vases and pieces of furniture of the era.
We then visited the Forum Baths that were built after 80BC. There were two rooms here, one for heating and one for bathing and both had
decorations on the walls and ceilings as well as statues around the rooms in appropriate places.
Not too far away was the House of Faun, renowned as the largest house in Pompeii. In the centre is a bronze statue of the "Faun" with rooms all around
with mosaics that have survived centuries of time. The house covers approximately 2,970 square mtrs and it is a very important part of the history of Pompeii.
The House of the Baker showed some of the areas used to create bread in the times. There is a table here that was used to rest the bread before baking and the oven and the
grain storage bins are well preserved.
Again, more examples of people caught in this horrific event that did bring to our notice, the horrors of such an incredible natural disaster.
Next was the Temple of Apollo with replica statues of Apollo and Diana on opposite sides but facing each other. It is a Doric style building with a colonnade and sundial which dates back to Augustus.
It appears to be one of the oldest structures here but had been rebuilt, even back in centuries. Too soon it was time to leave and return to Sorrento and the Marco Polo.
The weather was just beautiful and we had a little time to explore Sorrento just around the dock area. A wedding
couple were moving up and down the street having photos taken in this wonderful street full of character so we congratulated
them and it topped off a great day for us. Our bride was so excited that she called out "See my husband!" How lovely was that....