Bright memories – 9

Moving the clock forward a couple of years and we were back in Italy, this time in the sunny south. The presence of Vesuvius across the Bay of Naples was a powerful magnet, but we never did make it to the summit. You can try to cram too much into a holiday. I remember it being hot as Hades in Pompeii, so we opted for a cooler day to take the train to Ercolano. Although it was 22 years ago, I can still recall the awe we felt in the presence of this survivor of the volcanic eruption of AD79. Fragile as it was, so much was still intact. The beautiful frescoes and mosaic tiled bath houses of this former seaside resort had survived being buried in ash.

The day was hotting up by the time we’d finished our visit, but the ascent of the volcano was just 12km away. Too tempting, we caught the bus for the panoramic ride up the mountain, only to find that we still had an hour and a half of rough uphill walking ahead of us. There wasn’t time to reach the summit and return for the last bus down again. So near and yet so far! We were running out of holiday and I never managed to look into that caldera. I think the experience would be very different today.

I started this series as a way to take part in Becky’s Bright Squares, but I’ve been swept along on the tide of memory. I’m hoping that you’ll be happy to carry on with me. Meanwhile, many thanks to our lovely hostess.


  1. I thought my eyes had gone funny! But I’m thinking the edit probably matches how you felt in the heat
    I am thoroughly enjoying your memories, Jo and look forward to more.

    1. I have only limited processing available to me and I don’t have your skills, hon. I was going for drama but I really do like the original best. Unsquare, of course πŸ€—πŸ’•

  2. I loved that photograph and what you did with it. It’s very dramatic and suits the theme very well. I’ve never taken the trek to any volcano as I’m a bit scared. True. I know it’s stupid but I have a terrible fear that it will erupt as I’m halfway up the mountain, so I’m happy to look up at Etna when I go to Sicily (and once got covered in black ash in the city of Catania, so that was slightly ominous) and Vesuvius from Sorrento. Keep on with the Bright memories, I’m enjoying them.

    1. Thanks a lot, Mari. Thought I might have over egged it a bit in the processing. We all have our fears, hon, and they aren’t necessarily logical πŸ€—πŸ’•

  3. Volcanos are on my list as well. Maybe have to do one around the Pacific Rim if I can’t get to Europe again. Thanks for taking me to some of my favourite Italian spots Jo πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    1. Not sure if I like it, Margaret. A consekwence of conforming to the skware format and trying to retain the best of the original, which was a lovely shot. I played too much in process but I wanted a bit of drama to end on. Not that I’m ending…kwite πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

    1. I’m afraid I played with it too much in processing but I wanted a dramatic effect. The original is beautiful, but not skware πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Many thanks to you!

  4. Wonderful memories Jo; I think a holiday should always have a few avenues yet to be explored πŸ˜€

    Thank you for being part of squares again, you have been squaring with me since 2017. What a squarer, or should I say skwarer!!

    1. Starting to feel my age, chuck! Your skwares have worn me out πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Have a lovely weekend, hon! You’ll be skware-eyed by the end of it.

  5. You didn’t miss much by not going to the top of Vesuvius. We went 15 years ago, it was a long walk up a rough track from the car park and nothing there except a big hole in the ground and a wooden hut selling drinks and souvenirs. It’s supposed to still be active with plumes of smoke still rising but I saw absolutely nothing – I was distinctly underwhelmed 😦

    1. I don’t know if you follow Gilda, but she very recently posted a present day experience of Ercolano, also from a campervan. Many thanks, Trix! You’ve had some great photos. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  6. Thank for bringing back the memories of our magnificent holiday in Sorrentino.We visited all the spectacular places capri, Pompeii, Ercolani and the lot, but we did not make it up the volcano, too πŸ˜‰. A few years late I went up the Aetna in Sicily and that was really breathtaking 😊.

    1. Thanks for your company πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Our best volcano experience was almost certainly in the Azores a couple of years ago but Lanzarote in the Canaries was memorable too. I would love to visit Etna!

      1. I liked Timanfaya but our photos are old so thanks for sharing. The Azores are incredible, very Portuguese and relatively easy to get to from here. But only relatively πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

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