Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

sunrise from mom's balcony
the amtrak vermonter crossing the hudson in the early morning

Some early morning Thanksgiving scenes in the U.S


glen echo park

great purple berries

raking - good exercise awaits

certainly not a daily roman scene, bags of leaves!

on my daily walks some very unroman scenes and fun to see

Thursday, November 18, 2010

walking tour Nov 11th - ipogeo and mausoleum

mausoleum of lucius petus, off the via salaria

tufa walls

upper level inside, used as catacombs
ipogeo on via livenza, 9 meters down under a very lovely 20th century bldg

fabulous scene of diana and the hunt, funny since we had just seen this scene all over tunisia. She cut quite the figure, I guess

wonderful mosaic on the side wall, almost 3 dimensional effect

from this small fraction they believe it was either St Peter or maybe John the Baptist and a water scene!

upper part of fresco, fresco is from around the 3rd century a.d
saw two great sites which are normally closed to the public. the ipogeo's function is still unclear, what is clear is that it portrayed both christian and pagan symbols in the same place which was unusual and they are certain it was built just around the time of christianity being allowed i.e 313 a.d.   the  mausoleum was earlier, built when lucius was still alive. his sister's name is also on the tomb. they only found one tomb inside so he was most likely never buried there. both the upper and lower levels were used as catacombs, but it is a very small area.

Monday, November 15, 2010

our neighborhood upholsterers

A Saturday morning visit to say hello to the best upholsterers in town!

their working quarters

A finished product, light brown leather covered chairs patiently put together with staples (holding pelt in place) replaced one by one with brass studs. Very classy

when the boys get tired they can pop their heads out of the shop for this view of the forum!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

scenes from the medina in tunis

minaret in medina in tunis, flags were everywhere with either the picture of the president or the tunisian flag on them in preparation for the celebration of their national day ("changement") on Nov 7th. It was nov 7th 1987 when the current government took over and that president remains in power.

fabulous colored doors all throughout the medina

our hotel, Dar El Medina, was the first door  on the right. Very nice hotel in a former residence which has been carefully redone.  Was SO quiet at night, rest of medina does not look like this but is chaotic, and very noisy.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Halloween in Tunisia - a day trip to dougga and bulla regia

Roman Site in Dougga, the locals wander through the site doing their work

one of the few remaining mosaic in situ in dougga

a wonderful arch of settimo severus, seemed pretty precarious (dougga)

dougga mosaic

roman temple dougga
mosaic in basement level of roman house bulla regia
street leading to roman 2 story houses in bulla regia (only basement level story is preserved)
lovely peacock mosaic bulla regia
floor mosaic bulla regia
ground level of roman houses, most of the preserved mosaics were in the basement. the second story of these houses has been lost
theatre bulla regia
bath complex at bulla regia

our halloween cookies with a wonderful mint tea dougga
great roman amphitheater dougga
view from top of theatre, lovely rolling countryside (dougga)

one of the in-situ mosaics in the basement level of a roman house
bullia regia

bulla regia

great bear mosaic in theatre at bulla regia

we hired a car/driver for the 2 hour ride to dougga and then one hour ride to bulla regia, which is only about 40 km from the algerian border. the drive was lovely, reminded me of the hills of umbria and tuscany. tons of olive groves and more pomegranite groves than I have ever seen.  ride from dougga to bulla regia was gorgeous in some spots, we climbed in altitude and the landscape was more barren, fewer trees but very pretty.  both sites are well worth visiting. dougga is much larger and very intact. bulla regia is known for the in-situ mosaics which probably should be removed and put in a museum. a great trip.

Celebration of armed forces day nov 7, 2010

the famous italian frecce tricolore as they flew over the villa borghese and the piazza del popolo

the red, white and green lingering contrails

part of the festivities which were taking place at piazza del popolo
nov 4th was the 150th anniversary of armed forces day in Italy. There were events planned for 3 days which culminated last evening just about dusk in the piazza del popolo. all the branches of the armed forces were gathered there for a ceremony and celebration. Starting off the celebration was the fly over (twice) of the 9 Italian air force planes in the famous vee shape with the trailing red, white and green Italian colors. Was quite a show since the planes were quite low and loud. Lots of pleased on lookers on a Sunday afternoon.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Tunis trip -Oct 30th sidi bou said and carthage

view of the sea from our hotel room in sidi bou said
garden of the hotel
courtyard of our hotel 

view from ruins in carthage of mediterranean

carthage great sunny and warm day to explore

carthage ruins of baths of antoninus

in the ruins of the huge thermal bath complex in carthage

50 minute flight from rome to tunis, short ride to sidi bou said where we were staying for the first night. gorgeous views of the sea from our room, sunny day to explore the various sites of the carthage ruins including the museum. took local train around, cost per ride was about .75 cents. Sidi bou said is a very wealthy suburb of tunis, all blue and white colored homes everywhere, very pretty.