Happy Birthday Dad

December 24, 2005

First off. Happy Birthday Dad.

Today we visited the Naples Archaeological Museum which contained many artifacts from Pompeii and Herculaneum. Of the artifacts on display, the mosaics impressed us the most. The mosaic of Alexander the Great was so large and done with such detail.. It was hard to believe such a amazing piece of art was created so long ago (around 100 B.C). Another interesting area of the museum was the secret cabinet (A.K.A. the exotic room). It seems the inhabitants of the Pompeii and Herculaneum area enjoyed creating erotic art for their brothels, baths, house and taverns. The artifacts ranged from sensual wall paintings and pottery to phallic lamps. It was hard not to get to chuckle at some of the creations including the flying penis and the man whose toga fails to mask an erection. The museum currently has a display of artifacts from the Tang dynasty in China as well. It gave us a thought of making a trip to China and also made us think back to our time spent in SE Asia. Another interesting area of the museum was the inversions by Archimedes including his perpetual screw. He was quite a genius for his time.

Later in the night we walked the lively streets of Naples, with our money belts on, certo, and came across on of the many churches with the Presepi displays. Presepis are Christmas cribs or better known to us as Nativity Scenes. These are a Neapolitan tradition. The inventive creations sometimes incorporate modern figures into the huge crib scenes, which contain moving water features, illuminated pizza ovens and tons of moss and bark.

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