Monday, February 17, 2020

A Town Lost in Time


Stones are silent, with homes built up on the side of the mountain

One afternoon seemed much like the other as markets opened their shops, as wives and mothers swept out the dust and mud that had built up from the day before. A normal day for Aemilia and her two sons, she waited for the next shaking of the earth.

Aemilia's husband had shrugged off her worries. Calvus held no concerns at all for the shaking. Vulcan and Hephaestus were at work in the holy mountain, Calvus reassured her.  Just make an offering to Vulcan, pour dark red wine on the rocks by the temples, and all will be just fine.

The ground shook all through the day and into the night. There, Calvus stated, see the smoke rising from his forge. 

The sky exploded and smoke became a billowing monster of gray and black. Before Aemilia could gather her sons to her side and Calvus could run back home, fire and ash rained down on them. She had no time to even cry out as she clutched the boys to shield them with her body. 

In brief moments the ash settled on them, cloaking them in gray death. Her home in Pompeii was now lost in time.  


video we took  from across the Bay of Naples
I hope this video plays, but if not, oh well.


We were looking down on the bay of Naples. Having just come from Pompeii where some of the town had been excavated, we could only start to imagine what true horror had happened. 


Destruction of Pompeii and Herculaneum.jpg
Destruction of Pompeii and Herculaneum, John Martin 1821


32 comments:

  1. I remember hearing or reading that Pompeii was being excavated, what a treasure trove for archeologists and scientists. Paleontologists too. I wonder will the entire city eventually be uncovered and will there be reports in newspapers for us to read at our leisure.
    I imagine it is a terrible way to die, but people continue to build and live in close proximity to volcanoes. Just like people build and rebuild in bushfire and floods areas.

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    1. Why would anyone rebuild in a flood zone is beyond me.

      Galveston, Texas, has been hit by many destructive hurricanes. Each time the city is rebuilt. Why??

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  2. You seem to jog memories. Just after midnight on the USS Independence. Passing thru the straits of Italy and
    Sicily. The old man broke the silence of the night with an announcement, if you want to see a show get to the flight deck, JUst above Messina, Mt ETna is erupting. What a show and me with no camera that would take it.
    Anyway, a very good story, and so possible.
    Sherry & jack

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    1. I bet the images are still strong in your mind.

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  3. PS: We probably had 4000 men on the flight deck, cat walks and elevators that night.

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  4. Pompeii was fascinating, and yes the way they died was terrible.

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  5. I've visited the area years ago.
    The thing is the soil under the volcano is very fertile, farmers living there are quite well off, so no tendency to leave for a safer place.

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    1. Volcanic soil has been enriched by the ash. Naples officials have offered a sum of money for residents to relocate. I don't know how many have taken it.

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  6. What a treasure trove Pompeii is. We'll be learning from these ruins for years and years, I'm sure.

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    1. They are still excavating and learning more about the culture then.

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  7. What was a terrible tragedy for the people involved has been etched into the minds of modern folks do to our archeological discoveries. The connection that many feel with these people who lived so long ago is striking.

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    1. This happened so quickly, even tho there were earthquakes for days before it erupted.

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  8. What an awful way to die, you described it well.

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    1. So horrible!

      We went to a Nat'l History Museum in LA when the traveling display of Vesuvius was there. A historian from Italy described the event. That, along with replications of people dying was sobering.

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  9. I remember the film, The Last Days of Pompeii when I was young and it stuck in my mind. What a terrible way to die.

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    1. The terror that hit the residents must have been unimaginable.

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  10. Pompeii real esatate has been really dusty for the past couple thousand years.

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    1. Yeah, I know. Those some say there are some real deals on the slopes of Mt. Vesuvius.

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  11. Amazing you got to visit the site. So many people gone in just an instant.

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    1. Seeing the site was humbling. Here was where someone lived, here was where the market was. It was easy to picture people walking along the streets. And then.

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  12. That must have been really something to see and I agree with the others, such a horrible and scary way to go.

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  13. I should love to visit Pompeii sometime. What an amazing and tragic event that was.

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    1. We were on a Rome bus tour, which allowed us to enter first, before tourists came. It was quieter, slower.

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  14. I saw a docu the other day that suggested that Pompeii had a bad gang problem... showed a locking system for a door that involved deadbolts, a locking bar, AND a pole wedged in from the inside...

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  15. A day in history captured for ever.

    God bless.

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  16. A nightmare, truly. And, apparently, there's a volcano in Mexico rumbling to life with a city nearby...

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    1. I saw that!! It will be amazingly scary it is does erupt.

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Go ahead...it won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!