Subject: Re: Pompeii from Roma?
Hi Tracye,

I just want to add a bit to the comments Wil made. Hope you find this info useful.

1. In case you have to ask, the name of the regional train is Circumvesuviana, which is independent of the state-run trains (known as FS and Trenitalia). Tickets are obtained separately. 2. You do change at the Naples Central station and go downstairs to catch the Circumvesuviana, as Wil noted. Circumvesiviana has its own station which is one stop before the Central Station going to Pompeii. Don't go there. If you decide to have dinner in Naples (good idea), you want to take a cab or bus from the Central Station. Cabs are difficult to find at the Circumvesuviana Station. 3. There are dozens of people at the Naples station who will offer to help you for a fee as Naples has a very high unemployment rate. Don't even make eye contact; go to an information kiosk. They are to nuisances as Charlie Parker was to saxophonists. 4. There are two stops in Pompei (the modern city is spelled with one i). You want the one that says Scavi (excavation). It lets you out right at the entrance. The routes to the two stops are different, so be sure you take the correct one. The wrong stop is somewhat of a walk (or a short cab ride). 5. Some people, like us, love Naples for its magnificent scuzziness. If you have time to have a wonderful dinner, take a bus or cab to Piazza Trieste e Trente (I never get the order of these places right--it may be the reverse). This is the Piazza that contains the Galleria and the Teatro San Carlo. It also contains a wonderful coffee house for dessert, Gambinus, and, slightly off the main street, Chiaia, there is Brandi's, originator of the Marguerita pizza (of course, there are other famous places in Naples in other parts of town like Da Michel). If you do go there, ask for our waiter, Mario Scorso, and give our best--tell him we are hoping to see him again in the Spring. 6. Don't look too well dressed. Chiaia is in the best part of town, but you never know. I met a couple who were as elegant as can be, including a Leica camera. They told us how they were robbed at gunpoint (but in a different part of town). I look exactly like what I am--an absent minded professor. The worst that has happened to me was a small bag being ripped off in Rome.

Enjoy your trip and, if you can, see a bit of Naples in the process.

Ira H. Bernstein, Ph. D. UT-Arlington