Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Napoli Take 2: Grace Through Grime?

It's as gritty, grimy, and greasy as they say.  It makes Roma look as elegant as the most beautiful parts of Paris or Vienna.  I can see why loads of people don't like Napoli at all.  It is downright dirty and dingy.  On hot and humid summer days, the whole combination can be oppressive.

So, if that is a deal-breaker for you, don't go.  I can also, however, see the charm that Napoli holds for some.  There's no artificial gussying up.  There is squalor, for sure.  But the density of humanity is vibrant and frenetic.  And the food and the art and the passion and the noise and the graffiti also in their own way create a splendor of sorts.

There are, in addition, if you look for them, some small, quick moments of beauty. I tried to capture some of them.

Sculpture by William Kentridge:  "Il cavaliere di Toledo."

Galleria Umberto I shopping center -- opened in 1900.

Piazza del Plebiscito is a really vast and impressive square.  

Bay of Naples, with Mt. Vesuvius looming in the background.  

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