Visit the Bay of Naples and you can't ignore Vesuvius. It's like the Elephant in the Room:
Always there in the corner of your eye. Brooding. Waiting.
It is, fortunately, the most monitored volcano on the planet. Six hundred thousand people live inside the so called red zone and a total of three million are at risk if it decides to do a really big bang.
This view of the monster across the bay near sunset (click image for full size pano) was pleasant enough with nothing between us and the crater.
So: I set to calculating how much time we would have between a bright flash and the shock wave hitting the hotel (I'm a pessimist you see). It's about one hundred and twenty seconds to get away from large sheets of glass and into some kind of protected area.
Best not use the lift then.
The good news is that it didn't explode when we were there.
The locals view is that it is a "good vulcano - is asleep". Hmm. Imagine the situation when three million excitable Italians are told an eruption is imminent and the best way out is by car....