Monday, April 26, 2010
Day 4 - Napoli - italia
well, what a day it's been (and again if you're starting here....go BACK TO DAY 1).
caught the high speed train at Termini station from Rome to Naples at 10:05 am. it was 20 minutes delayed. 1 hour instead of 2. while on the train i got a text from the convention promoter that my hotel had been changed...lucky i got THAT text. the new hotel is actually way nicer...but not as well located. the taxi was 25 eu !!!! dropped my stuff off and as i have a savant's memory i found a great place for lunch that i ate at 2 years ago. Da Ettore... aside from them ripping me off with with a crazy charge of 3 euro's for the cover...it was great.
after lunch i headed off to the old center of town. the streets were teeming with life along via toledo. as i got closer i saw that all the churches were closed for the afternoon (i kinda knew this). i got a wonderful gelato at the classic chocolate shop Gay Odin (caffe with pistachio). then i walked a bit more, sat on the steps of one of my favorite churches "san domenico maggiore" (closed...but we'll get back to it later) finished my gelato...and nearly passed out! ok. severely sleep deprived here. and decided wisely to head back to the hotel for a nap. since everything was closed this was pretty easy decision making.
had my much needed nap, and headed back to the center of town where i made a stop in a church i'd never been in before (chiesa di S'anna dei lombardi...also known as the church of Monteoliveto). i had passed it before, but either never really explored it or ...??? i don't know. it was very quiet, no one in, and a guy started talking to me in italian and kind of ushered me towards the back where i could see signs about Vassari...so i followed him. and low and behold he led me way in back to the Sacristy where Giorgio Vasari did the most amazing frescoed ceilings !!! (this is the same Vasari more famous for being the first italian art historian...and also a great architect as well.)...but he was no joke as a painter! what a special art treat this was!!
after this i headed off to the church of Gesu Nuovo. another stunner! nothing specific, but glorious architecture and design everywhere.
after that i headed off for the church of san Domenico Maggiore (where i nearly passed out on the steps), had a great time... now it was time to head off in the direction of where i would eat dinner. back along the via toledo, where it was swarming with the pre dinner walk. made a right turn on via chiaia. first stop a nice little wine bar where i had a couple of glasses of proseco with olives on the side. perfect way to kill time before dinner, and then i walked over to the restaurant Manfredi. a simple fried mozarella app, then linguini with fruiti di mare (mixed clams), and a bronzino (sea bass grilled). all awesome....took the nice stroll home and enjoyed (oink) a way too big cup of gelato!
bout to head off to sleep!