Yep, you read right. I am H.O.T. under the C.O.L.L.A.R. No not from an Italian Stallion – because we were so close to A VOLCANO today. Mount Vesuvius to be precise.
We caught a delightful minibus from Pompeii and it didn’t take long until we were snaking up the mountain/volcano. What was described as an ‘easy walk’ really wasn’t. Whilst it wasn’t technically far, it was uphill and the surface was like gravel and quite slippery, so each step wasn’t quite a step.
MVP to Hardy though – did not complain once. Just kept trudging on. He was more interested to see if each rest point sold ice cream. They sold wine though which I actually did see people drinking. I was both shocked and impressed. I was also amazed by the different types of people giving it a go, particularly their choice of footwear or clothing or their age, or choosing to walk FROM THE BOTTOM (understandably though because parking near the top costs 50 EUR), but still, that shit far. One guy I thought for sure would die. People also cycle up for reasons I will never understand. I took a sense of pride in seeing fit, good looking people struggling. I knew this ass and thighs were good for something. (I am fully aware fat and muscle strength are entirely unrelated but just let me have this).
Again, I didn’t hear much of the guide but here’s what I did pick up:
- The core is about 8 kilometres down
- Majority of the lava and stuff has flown south rather than north (Pompeii is south)
- The last eruption was in 1944 and the American Air Force has quite amazing pictures of this apparently as they were in-country by this point.
- There are lots of other “craters” I think he said in the Bay of Naples but they’re not really sure what they are or what they could do (do not quote me on that).
- There is some kind of huge bedrock blocking the main ‘exit’ of a future eruption, so they think it might actually explode out the side.
He also wasn’t shy in talking about the politics of it all, basically saying they could be doing and researching so much more about Vesuvius and surrounding activity if they had more money, but that said money went to the mafia and Berlusconi. That money would also pay for the funicular which was there for a short period in the 80s and then dismantled because it was always too windy so it stopped.
Our minibus then took us on the long-ish drive through the winding mountains of the coast, which included a stop at a servo for lunch. No kidding. At first I was like WTF but happily walked away with a delicious toastie made with olive bread, prosciutto and provolone cheese. Step it up Shell and BP. Christ almighty.
As you can probably guess I am also hot under the collar because I’VE FINALLY MADE IT TO THE AMALFI COAST PEOPLE. Bucket list TICK. We’re staying in Minori which is just a stone’s throw from Amalfi. We drove through Amalfi and could see several enormous boats anchored offshore, one even had an array of floating slides around it. I hear Kourtney Kardashian is around and that Heidi Klum recently married off Capri. 🤷🏻♀️
The beach was BEAUTIFUL. We’ve been so lucky with the weather. I loved people watching – old, young, fat, slim. No one cared. The beach bar sold beer, wine and limoncello and some of the group brought floaties from a store across the street. We stayed almost 3 hours and there was so much laughing all around. I’m a pig in shit right now. Can you tell?