So why do I care? Why on earth do I think cruise passengers should give this city any money whatsoever? Because underneath all that grime and gruff exterior, Naples has some of the most amazing sites, architecture, and food in the world. It is one of the oldest cities in Italy, and has some wonderfully preserved buildings and streets. Perhaps Naples just happens to have things that I particularly love. Sculpture is my favorite art form, and the Naples Archaeology Museum contains some of the best and most sculpture in the world. Then you have the Sansavero Chapel with the Veiled Christ and the fisherman caught in his net... seriously, I was almost as impressed as I was with David. Just breathtaking. I love amazing architecture, and Naples has it. From the iron beauty that is Galleria Umberto, to the Pantheon-like church in Piazza del Plescibito to the crazy looking Gesu church with spikes all over the outside, Naples is a feast for the eyes. Oh, did I say feast? Yes, I could feast on the pizza in Naples endlessly. In fact, now anytime I visit a new city, I search for that local pizzaria that claims to be in the style of Naples, just for a fraction of the memory of that pizza. I also love to see a little local culture, and with the clothes and Italian grandmas hanging out of the windows on Spaccanapoli, I just feel immersed, "Dorothy, you aren't in Kansas anymore". I love that feeling; it sounds silly, but that feeling makes me feel like I am growing as a person.
I feel bad for Naples. I just want to shake them and say "Do you realize what you have here?!" With everything the city has to offer, plus all of the amazing side trips that are within less than an hour, you could spend a week in Naples and never get bored. But, because of all the aforementioned issues, people never do. Will Naples shape up, clean up and become the tourist destination it could be in my lifetime? I feel that it won't, but one thing Naples never is, is predictable. John Heald says that Naples is the Charlie Sheen of Italy, and I have to agree. It could be so good if it could just get rid of the crazy.