A page out of Miss Niece's travel journal and reflections on Pompeii

Wanderlust.  Itchy feet.  Restlessness.  Curiosity.  Boredom.   Insatiable addiction to foreign made goods.  Yearning to set fuchsia manicured feet on unfamiliar territory and immerse oneself in obscure customs and traditions.  The desire and passion to experience something different other than the mundane 9 to 5 daily grind.  The burning necessity to have your passport imprinted with as many stamps as there are uncharted locales.  The race against the clock to outrun as many time zones as possible in 24 hours and make it back to your hotel in time for happy hour. 

Little did I know then when I foolishly agreed to have my 12 year old niece accompany me on my yearly Paris sojourn some five years ago, that I would be embarking upon an adventure like none other, inadvertently spawning a travel-a-holic mini version of myself.  And let’s not even get into the satchel obsessed shopaholic fashionista persona just yet!  Yikes!!  The Kid’s now seventeen and in an element of her own, squirreling away funds for that much anticipated jet-away, luggage packed, ready to hop on a plane at a moment’s notice. 

Amazing how the tables have turned, as it was her cuckoo ol’ Auntie who now listened to countless tales of globetrotting and expedition, ears perked, mouth aghast, rapturously lapping up each and every syllable.  It’s as if she herself had set her pink sneaker clad feet upon the turquoise hued islands of Greece, devouring feta and olives, all washed down with endless supplies of wine flowing from brightly painted ceramic jugs. 

Vino tastes oh so magnifique when poured from brightly coloured jugs, don't you think??

Travel journal in hand, pen in the other, the Kid diligently documented her escapades abroad, the rudimentary bones of a memoir in the making (like seriously, you’re 17 Kid!!) and first draft of a future New York Times bestseller (the Kid’s got high hopes, as you can tell).  Or, perhaps landing the dream job of National Geographic photographer, snapping digital memories of the awe inspiring kind, nonetheless, the travel bug had bitten and there was no turning back.

Waving adieu to sun bronzed Greece, Miss Kid gleefully set out on the next leg of her high school adventure and firmly placed her rose hued sandal on Italian soil.  First stop was the southern end of the country, where an up close and personal history lesson awaited.

And so Miss Niece found herself in contemplative mode, as she respectfully strolled along the ruins of Pompeii, a once bustling Italian metropolis that was levelled by the violent eruption of Mount Vesuvius on AD 79.  A prosperous port and holiday resort located in southern Italy, about 23 miles from Naples, it’s unfortunate geographical position at the base of the volcano buried the city under layers of cinder and ashes.  The loss of life was instantaneous, with the quicksilver flow of lava literally halting fleeing limbs in their tracks; a preserved mummified glimpse into what daily life would have been like for this Roman enclave.  Entombed in their volcanic graves, the citizens of Pompeii left quite the archeological legacy, revealing snippets of everyday life from over 2,000 years ago.  Excavations of this ancient town unearthed a villa that had remained virtually untouched by the march of time, the lack of air and moisture effectively preserving a moment in time and gifting historians a rare peek into the past.

Pompeii photos courtesy of Maradzidra

As Miss Niece ever so carefully traipsed along the once lively pathways, she was mindfully aware of the enormity of the devastation that had ensued with the eruption of the once dormant volcano, her surroundings permeated by a kind of frozen in time unsettling unease.  Grateful for the opportunity of being able to leap back into history and experience for herself what she had previously read about, Miss Kid knew that she was on a life-long adventure of learning and discovery - one that will never fail to amaze, inspire and educate.

Come tag along on Miss Niece’s high school adventure, as she regales her wacky ol’ Auntie with tall tales (all true!!) and escapades of gallivanting about the Italian peninsula, with a tad bit of fascinating and educational info thrown into the mix.

Next week – La dolce vita – where oh where in Italy is Miss Niece??  Stay tuned for more Miss - adventures of the Miss - Kid inspired kind!!

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