Tag Archives: Naples

Another Neapolitan treat

Just up the street a bit from where I was staying in Naples,  is the former cloister of the church San Gregorio Armeno. It’s enormous, covering nearly a city block. From  the 16th century, it provides such a surprise when you enter the not very beautiful gates, which open to this view. 

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It’s a long way to the top!

As you trudge up the many stairs, you can admire the ancient embellishments, such as these.

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The cloisters feature a whimsical baroque fountain embellished with masks, dolphins and sea horses, and two exquisite statues of Christ and a Samaritan woman, by Matteo Bottigliero.

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San Gregorio Armeno Cloister

Photo credit: donight.it

The nuns had a bakery, where you can still see the utensils they used. I do believe these nuns were responsible for the hip expanding, but delicious, pastries known as sfogliati.

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I don’t know what these were used for, but aren’t they pretty?

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The nuns could sit in these little niches to see and hear mass being celebrated. Maybe hear, better than see? I’ll check out the view when I get back to Naples.

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Because they were cloistered nuns in the past, near the main entrance you will find two little doors with revolving platforms that served as the means to receive food, clothing, letters and so on.

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A pretty little chapel was accessed via a flight of stairs.

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A delicate little chapel

There are still nuns living in the cloisters. Among other things, they teach dozens of cute little knee high urchins that call these surroundings their kindergarten.

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It’s well worth a visit, if you ever happen to be in this fascinating city.

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Ta-Da! Thank you John

For those of you who might suffer from short term memory degradation, here is a reminder for you. This image first appeared in a post a few days back, but unfortunately,  none of us could fully understand the dialect of Naples.

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Thanks to a bloke who lives down in the big capital city of the fair state in which I live, and thanks to him having a friend who could do the job, we now have a translation. 

(I think I’ll just hand my post over to the bloke and Maxine!)

The new commandments of a true Napoletano

1.  The football team of your heart is Napoli
2.  On Sunday you must eat Pasta with meat sauce
3.  Every day you must say something in Neapolitan Dialect
4.  At Christmas time you must eat Struffoli, and at Easter the Pastiera* and the   Casatiello**
5.  You get angry at Naples, but if you leave it you long for it.
6.  You spend all your money,
7.  You’d stay in bed all your life.
8.  You’ll do everything tomorrow.
9.  You don’t do anything, but if you must, let someone else do it.
10. You are born tired and you want to rest during the day and sleep at night.

[There you go Yvonne. From one of my Australian Italian friends who was born in Tunisia.]

  •  If you’re wondering what pastiera is:    pastiera
  • ** If you’re wondering what casatiello is:  casatiello

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Not quite Banksy, but interesting

Scattered around Naples, often in tiny side alleys, street artworks of varied kinds can be found.

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What is the meaning of life? What is the meaning of this piece of “art”?

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There must be a story/legend attached to this one. I hope someone can enlighten us.

This one was intriguing, it is written in the Neapolitan dialect, and seems to be the new 10 commandments for true Neapolitans. Is there anyone in the group who can translate this for us? Number 4 caught my eyes, it seems to be what to eat at Christmas (Natale) and Easter (Pasca).

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Madonna with a pistol

I assume most of you have heard of Banksy. If not, trot off and read a little bit about this mystery man.  Banksy

Before my somewhat truncated visit to Naples, I had read that there was a work of Banksy’s somewhere in Naples, and I was determined I would find it, no matter how long it took me. I didn’t have to look very far, it turned out to be just at the top of the street where my apartment was located! Huh, that took all the challenge out of the search. I  ate a nice rhum baba, just for spite.

So, here’s what you will see, if you walk up Via San Gregorio Armeno. I never expected to be up close and personal with one of Banksy’s works. It’s kept well protected from the busy folks who graffiti every square millimeter of space in this city.

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There, now you can see the pistol

This image from street art in Naples shows how casually exposed the stencil was before it was given some protection.

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Have any of you seen works by Banksy? I think they are to be found in many places around the world.

 

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Dear Barb

In anticipation of your visit, and not wanting to appear a total klutz when we head to the hydrofoil to go visit Karen and Mike in their new home, I decided to do a little trial run of getting to the correct place at the harbour. All I can say is “Such fun I had!”

I had read online all about getting there by tram, it sounded ever so simple. (When will I ever learn?) I walked to Piazza Garibaldi where I “knew” I’d be able to buy tickets and catch Tram 1. I finally found the tram lines and saw a sign that said “Fermata provvisoria”. I gave myself a pat on the back for being able to translate that to “Temporary stop”. Barb will be so impressed, I thought. I waited. And waited. And waited. Finally, I went into the train station, found the Tourist Information folks and asked them where I could find that darn tram. An indulgent laugh emitted from the young lady. She said “Signora, there USED to be a tram.” Now, I had the choice of a bus or the metro. So, Barb, you’re going to just love riding the metro, I promise!  Or, even if you don’t, my strong advice to you is to grit your teeth and say nothing. 

A person could get lost in this train station!

The progress I was making did feel snail-like

Barb, the metro station is about 4 floors below ground level. Are you okay with that?

My first view of Mount Vesuvius, in the early morning haze.

Just a few images from the waterfront. We can take a rowboat ride, if you want to.

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This shy fellow volunteered to have his photo taken, and was happy to be seen on my blog. Thanks, Francesco.

We can go here, if that is your wish, Barb.

I probably looked a bit like this when my mission was accomplished. Very pleased, indeed. 

So, don’t say you haven’t been warned, and don’t complain when I get us lost a few times!

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