Walraths in Italy: Act II, Scene 1

Back to Tuscany and Assisi

We headed back to Tuscany the weekend of May 13 to pick up some more alabaster pieces for our collection and attend Mass at the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi. Both tasks were successful. I'll post more later this week. Here is a link to the photos from our trip...Firenze... home of the Uffizi

The Benedictine Abbey of the Holy Trinity at Cava dei Tirreni (near Salerno)

On April 16, April and I went with the International Archaeological Society on a trip to Cava for a visit to the Benedictine Abbey. This Abbey is celebrating its millenium of foundation, and the visit was one of our best trips to date. Not only was the Abbey a beautiful place to visit, but they went far out of their way to make the visit a successful one (click for more...)Exterior of the facade of the Abbazia Benedettina SS. Trinita di Cava


April and I visited Pompei on April14th... a first time for each of us. While it was still a nice visit, it was no where as impressive as Ostia Antiqua. We will also be visiting again before we depart Napoli... as we only saw about 1/4 of the city; and there's much more to see. Click here for a link to the photographs...

Tuscany, Scene 2

We visited Tuscany over the President's Day weekend and was able to find several stores we shopped from when we visited last in 2002. Sadly, since we were in Volterra on a Monday in the off-season, many of the stores we wanted to purchase more alabaster and marble from were closed either for the season, reposto, or just plain closed. we'll be heading back up there... note: Our photos disappeared with the SDHC card that someone took from the D40 at school. Look for more Tuscany photos in May.

Thanksgiving Weekend in München

Thanksgiving weekend we took a quick flight north on Lufthansa and spent the time staying at a small hotel near the hauptbahnhof. It was glorius to be able to breathe again, and in doing so, absolutely enjoy the Kris Kringle Markt... (click here to continue)

The ancient port city of Ostia Antica

The September 2010 trip by the International Archaeology Society-Naples was to the suburb of Rome where the ancient port of Ostia Antica is located. This archaeological site has many things to see: Roman roads, baths, a Roman theatre, stores, and ....(read more)

Mosaic in the baths

Some leave their heart in San Fran...
Mine's on Antiparos

We finally took a vacation this year, and traveled to the tiny Greek island of Antiparos. However, the wait was worth it-the island is beyond words. Friendly people, low cost, beautiful water and beaches, wonderful diving... all added up to a week that I wish could have continued much, much longer.

Visit the "Italia" blog for more details in words...

Visit this page for photos on land...

Visit this page for photos underwater... (note: I used Irfanview to resize and color correct to get it done quickly... I will take the time to photoshop color correct later this weekend-check back on Tuesday to see how the use of PS CS4 makes a difference).

and these are the dives from Antiparos--dives number 31 through 35.

Antiparos-Looking down from Kouros Village

March IAS Trip: The Vatican Scavi

March 13th saw the IAS group heading to Rome for what was probably the best trip I've been on so far. We explored the environs of St. Peters and the Vatican, learning how the area grew from 150 A.D. to the present. ...more The main office for the Vatican Scavi

February IAS trip: Montecassino, San Pietro di Infine, and the War Cemetaries of the Italians and the British

The trip to Montecassino was on a beautiful Saturday in the end of February. Billed as a trip to Montecassino, it also included the Italian War cemetary, the British War cemetary, San Pietro di Infine, and San Angelo, the crossing site of the Rapido river by the US 36th Infantry. More... the Montecassino Abbey

National Archaeological Museum in Naples

Another IAS trip, another set of photos. Saturday January 23rd, the society traveled down to the National Archaeological Museum in downtown Napoli. This museum is ranked as the third most important archaeological museum in the world, and I was quite impressed with the quality and quantiy of the collection. Unlike our visit to the Vatican museums earlier this month, I wasn't overwhelmed with the people there... (more) . Farnesse Bull, National Archaeological Museu, Napoli

Rome in January 2010

It's been 20 years since our last visit to Rome and St. Peter's. A long time! We made it back on a day trip on 2 January, focusing mainly on the museums and the nativity scene on St. Peter's Square. more...

St. Peter's Square, 2 January 2010

September's IAS Trip: The Grand Tour, Oplantis, Stabiae, Boscoreale

We had a great Saturday with the International Archaeological Society-Naples as we visited the archaeological digs at Oplantis, Stabiae's Villa San Marco and Villa Arianna, and the Boscoreale museum and dig.

The first site, Oplantis, had by far the best frescoes, as the excavations of the Burbons in Stabiae left very little undamaged or removed.

Follow the links below for the individual pages. The thumbnails link directly to larger images.


Oplantis fresco

Palazzo Reale, Caserta

We decided to try and escape some of the Sunday afternoon heat at the coast by driving a bit more inland to Caserta on the 23rd. It was a fun drive, and it was a bit cooler (27 instead of 31), and we did manage to find the Palazzo Reale, while we were there. It was too hot to walk the 6+ kilometers up the gardens and back, and there were more lines than we wanted to deal with into the apartments, so we're planning a later in the fall drive back there. But, here are some photos of the public areas and the "Palatine Chapel".

According to the guidebook, the palace was built for the Bourbon king, Charles III. It's the largest royal palace in Italy with more than 1000 rooms, grand staircases, and apartments.

There is also a full English garden (read a formal garden), lots of fountains, and some beautiful statuary.

We should return there sometime in late October, so watch for the updated photos then.

April outside the Palazzo Reale


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