Our final day together started with an unnecessarily large breakfast for Bev and I, with Gordon and Steve having a lovely walk along the seafront before we all met up. The idea was to have a pleasant train journey to Pompeii to look around there for a few hours, before the other three went to their hotel before their early flight whilst I caught a bus to Naples airport.
The train journey was a bloody nightmare and Bev was very vocal about what she thought about some of the occupants of the train. The railway service was hopeless, there were two trains but few people seemed to have a clue which was which, with both running late. The train that we were on was packed, a situation which just got worse as we got nearer to Pompeii.
Steve and I, who are selfless people, decided that Bev and Gordon could have the last remaining two seats. We found an area that we could stand in, whilst watching as people crammed themselves onto the train. It’s fair to say that some people are politer than others, but on the bright side, Bev didn’t bite anyone. Gordon also realised at the end of the journey that he could have just opened a window to get some cold air in.
We got off the train to have a leisurely lunch, where Gordon kindly shared his chips. He’s so graceful and elegant like that. Gordon caused a slight scene by nearly walking into the kitchen rather than the toilet, but I felt that it all added to the excitement of the proceedings.
Then it was on to Pompeii, which proved to be a far larger site than I had realised. We walked around for three hours and it was clear that we had only scratched the surface of what there was to see. I then read that the area of the site accessible to the public today is only 30% of what it was in the 1960s.
I won’t repeat the areas of the site that Bev wanted to see, but they were certainly not for children. After our long walk, we decided to just stop exploring the site, as it wasn’t brilliant in terms of the amount of signage or information and it all began to be just a little confusing. However, it was a fascinating site and I’m very pleased that I went. I can imagine going again in the future.
One little rider actually about there not being enough information. Bev had found a book somewhere along the route and she decided to be our tour guide. Steve and I ran off several times, but Gordon listened occasionally, and when he stopped listening Bev just told anyone who happened to be nearby what she could see in her guide.
And then Bev had another little incident, when she dropped her map outside of the site. Gordon and I didn’t feel that we were qualified to hang off the side of a stone wall to get the bloody thing back, but Steve, who is a professional, managed to secure it. He’s so very brave.
Then it was the sad moment for the others, the time had come for me to depart. They all left me alone at the bus station, but I was brave and managed to cope well and find my bus. I was very brave coming to think of it. With regards to the bus, it was only picking me up as I had pre-booked and it was a request pick-up only, but I was relieved to see it to be honest.
I’m now at the airport in the lounge waiting for my late night flight to London Gatwick with British Airways. The others are no doubt drunk in some bar in Pompeii…..
And with that, that’s the end of this blog in terms of the day by day summaries (unless something really exciting happens to the other three that I need to write about urgently). However, there are many more photos and some more exciting text about some of our adventures during the week to come. How very exciting….
PS, there’s one more thing to watch which comes from this week. Bev is holding a party at her Norwich abode for anyone she invites where we will burn her biscuits, for reasons known only to her.