Venezia!

This morning when we paid our hotel bill, we were really surprised. The cost was $125 per night for a superior room including a buffet breakfast.

This morning we took a train to Venice. As I’ve mentioned before, if you book in advance you can travel first class for a ridiculously low rate and avoid the free for all chaos of coach which we know all too well. In general, people pile their suitcases high on the seats and pretend to be asleep if anyone looks pleadingly at the empty seat.

Our second train was a 90 minute high-speed Trenitalia. For $35 each, we got business class seats. The approach to Venice is magical. The train leaves the city of Venice and heads out over a causeway to the island where only huge cruise ships mar the skyline.

We waited by the Grand Canal for our vaporetto and had to wait for four to get the right one. Just as one vaporetto was about to pull away, the silence was broken with cries of “Permesso, Permesso!” It was like watching a drama unfold. Wearing a flowered muumuu, a woman came bursting through the crowd with a huge suitcase, unlatched the gate on her own, and just as she proceeded to fling her bag aboard, the boat roared off leaving her standing there with a sheepish grin on her face.

We are very pleased with our hotel. It’s the NH Collection Palazzo Barocci which is right on the Grand Canal. Our budget did not include a room with a view, but the hotel has a beautiful garden where you can sit outside.

We took a vaporetto to Ca Rezzonico which is a museum celebrating Venice of the 18th century. The style included rococo furnishings, but it was so interesting to see painted on wallpaper. There were many teacups from all over the world on display as well as imports from China during Venetian trade.

Tonight we had dinner just down the street from Rialto. It was humid outside, but nice to be able to eT outside. When they found out we went there because of Rick Steves’ we got free proseco and limoncello. The scallops were delicious as was the pesto pasta.

Walking back to our hotel, it was nice to experience Venice when the crowds are down. We decided to look at our blog from 2011 and to our surprise found out we had been in the very same museum we toured today in 2011 but neither of us can recall having ever been there ever! We could not believe it and could not stop laughing. We will have to look at our 2011 photos when we get home. Tomorrow will be a hot day, but we look forward to exploring Venice once again.

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