Sunday, September 12, 2010

Alleyways and Neon Jesus

Here are a few photos of our first day of touring around Naples. We first started by following a little walking tour out of our Lonely Planet Naples guidebook. That took us to Santissima Annunziata, a church which was closed. But attached to it was the better site anyway - an old orphanage with a baby drop-off wheel:
Drop off your baby!

That window overlooks an alley. A nun sat on this side waiting for the wheel to spin, where she would then bathe the child in this little basin before registering it into the orphanage.

 Shortly hereafter, we just started off wandering, and headed to a pizzeria. We have no idea where we were, but found a little pizzeria on a side street. We figured that in Naples, it would be impossible to get a bad pizza. While the pizza was delicious...

Our first pizza in Naples - yummmmm!

 the best was the picture of Jesus framed in neon on the wall behind the brick ovens.

Brick Ovens, Pizza Artist, and Neon Jesus
We're all for Jesus, and if having Him framed in neon helped make our pizza taste as good as it did, then bring on the neon.

More wandering led us past fantastic alleys...
Laundry, Laundry everywhere...electricity is too expensive to use dryers; also notice the blue bucket about 2/3 down in the pic - this is apartment "shopping." The lady holding the bucket on a rope lowers it for her items, pulls them up, then lowers money.
By complete accident, we found one of the most famous streets in Naples:
Via San Greggorio Armeno, home to presepi (nativity) artisans. Sadly, the presepi are made out of bark & moss, which the USDA bans from importation. These are one of the top "souvenirs" of Naples.

Here it first Neapolitan gelato. Pistachio. Yum, Yum, Yum.
The mall; yep, that's our shopping mall.

And finally, this is some castle. I'm sure I've seen it listed in guidebooks. We were just headed to our bus and came upon it, so I have no additional info at this time.

We had a great first day walking around. It was definitely key to just get lost as we got off the main, really congested streets and got a feel for the Neapolitan life. We even got to witness some sort of intense, Jerry Springerish, lady fight which had all the locals coming out of their houses, staring and shaking their heads. Sadly, no pics of that.
I've seen other blogs with photo albums attached, so eventually, we'll include some album links. Ciao for now.

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