Sunday, 7 October 2012

Back from holiday

Yesterday we returned from a cruise Venice to Barcelona. Highlights included Venice itself, Gaudi's spectacular unfinished cathedral at Barcelona, the attractive port of Zadar in Croatia and the majestic Valetta in Malta. Low point of the trip was a visit to the archaeology of Barumini - I was really looking forward to it and it turned out a disaster.

There is no warning about how difficult it is to visit this site. Access to the middle is via a series of modern staircases which ascend the outside of the tower, followed by a couple of very narrow low tunnels with steep stone uneven steps leading into the interior. On the day I went, there were several cruise ships running excursions to the site. Many people were elderly, some with walking sticks. All were taken into these tunnels - I was behind a man who was having severe difficulty and edging forward a centimetre at a time. Other people were behind me so I was stuck in a small space for a long time. When we reached the centre of the structure, I was appalled to discover that we had to renegotiate the tunnels to get out. Meanwhile more and more people - a few hundred, I think - were pouring into the small space. To get out, I had to climb a wall of rock as tall as myself, with only a few foot and hand holds. Then back into the narrow tunnel.

Normally I am really interested in such sites - if I had stayed outside I would have enjoyed it more. This site is not suitable for large numbers of people and it is only a matter of time before someone is injured and there is no easy way of getting them out. If someone is stuck in the tunnel between two people with difficulties, there could be an awful situation.

I didn't even attempt any MA work, as I was ahead when we went and I will catch up this week. Meanwhile, there's the washing and the post.

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