Today we made our way from somewhere on the coast of Calabria to Pompei. The main road that you take, the A3, Is under massive construction which was begun in 2001. They are replacing most of the road, bridges and tunnels. It will probably take another 15 years to complete. Since most of the way the cars are on one side of the road in two lane traffic, it is slower than expected.
The traffic in Pompei is horrific. Our B & B, the Certe Notte is not far from the center of town on a fairly busy street in an unattractive area. But the place is really nice and we have a bedroom, sitting room and bathroom all for only 70 euros a night. Antonio, the owner, explains where the ruins are and what restaurants are good. We plan on walking to as much as possible and maybe taking the train.
One place that Antonio suggests turns out to be a local cafeteria-style place called Todisco. When John and I step into the the restaurant we are given a number. Of course we are not sure what we are supposed to do. We try to look at the food on display. This is unfortunately perceived as us trying to cut in line. We are given a dirty look. I explain, “Americano, non capisco. ” The woman next to me says, “Ah, Americano,” a little resignedly I thought.
It’s our turn. We point to various dishes, a lasagna dish, some kind of rolled pork, grilled artichokes, and marinated octopus. We also get a bottle of their own vintage of white wine. As it turns out the lasagna is an eggplant lasagna, the octopus is quite delicious, the artichokes are wood grilled and the pork turns out to be rolled up pork rind. There are a lot of chewy things in this lunch. Also the wine turns out to be borderline undrinkable but of course we persevered.
After walking back to the hotel, we watch some tennis and decide that there is no way we can eat dinner after such a large lunch. So we go to bed early which probably explains why I am writing this between 5 and 6 in the morning.