Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Ötzi in Bolzano, Italy

Ötzi - reconstruction
One of the highlights of the Italy trip was heading north towards Bolzano on my 40th birthday to visit the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology - the home of Ötzi - the Iceman.  Ötzi is a 5300 year old wet mummy that was found frozen in the Tyrolean Alps in 1991.  Not only was his body preserved, but many of the tools that he was carrying with him as well.  The museum does not disappoint.  Ötzi's mummified body is on display in a cooled room, behind glass.  The window into the mummy room is the first display that you see when you enter the exhibit space.  Then all of his tools are beautifully presented and interpreted.  Photos are not allowed in that part of the museum, but you can seen wonderful photos of the artifacts on the museum website (link above). Photos, however, are allowed in other parts of the museum, including the fantastic reconstruction of Ötzi and a lifesize, interactive touchscreen autopsy table that lets you examine the mummy inside and out.

The outside of the museum in scenic Bolzano.

The touchscreen autopsy table let you zoom in and see different layers or bone, muscle, and tissue inside the mummy.

Ötzi's big hands and his farmer tan reminded Lori and I of my dad's hands as soon as we saw them.  Its a remarkably lifelike reconstruction of a man who made his living with his hands.

 Photo Credits: Tim Rast, Lori White

Monday, October 27, 2014


We visited Pompeii on our way off of the Amalfi Coast and north through Florence and into the Dolomiti Mountains.  The scale of the excavations and ruins at Pompeii is something that I wasn't prepared for.  The town had a population of around 11,000 people when it was destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79.  The town that I grew up in had a population of 2000, and the homes and businesses were spread over a comparable sized area to Pompeii. Archaeological excavations at Pompeii over the past 250 years have exposed most of the town.  Our visit lasted from mid-afternoon until sundown.  At night it was pitch black and without a GPS and our iPhone flashlights we might have still been stumbling around the streets when the packs of stray dogs inhabiting the town began to rouse and prowl the empty streets.

Photo Credits: Tim Rast

Friday, October 24, 2014

Isle of Capri, Italy

Leaving Capri

Photo Credits: Tim Rast

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Pontone, Italy

View of Pontone from a garden in Ravello, Italy

Photo Credit: Tim Rast

Monday, October 20, 2014

Amalfi, Italy

Photo Credits: Tim Rast

Friday, October 17, 2014

Atrani, Italy

Home for 10 days
Atrani, Italy
Photo Credits: Tim Rast

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

On Vacation

Flying over the Austrian Alps on the way to Italy
 Photo Credits: Tim Rast

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