Oct 12 – Venice

October 25, 2008

On the boat to Venice
On the boat to Venice with my cool friends. Aneisa (my roommate from MN), Eric (NH), Spencer (Spokane, WA!), Taylor (MT), and Andrew (MA). We took a “taxi” boat through the canal to get to the main area of Venice.
Let me first say that Venice is a beautiful city, but one day was enough and I would never choose to live there. My friend said it quite perfectly, “I feel like we’re in some sort of theme park.” Everywhere we turned there were tourists. In Piazza San Marco… oh man! There were so many people! It started to stress me out! Especially since nobody watches where they’re going because they’re looking up at the beautiful buildings. It was rather difficult to dodge the people,.. and the large population of pigeons. Pigeons are pretty bad because they just fly where they want expecting the people to move out of their way. I swear I almost got nailed in the face about 3 times! Yowza! What a story that would be.. “What happened to your face?” …”I was hit by a pigeon.”
Risotto frutti di mare! Yum!!! My first time eating squid.. I was a littl
Lunch: Risotto al frutti di mare! Yum!!! My first time eating squid.. I had to close my eyes a few times because the tentacles sort of weirded me out.

Allora haha, enough rambling. When we got off the boat we took a walking tour through the city. The tours are always optional, but I like to go on them so I can understand some history of the city and figure out where things are in order to make the most of my free time. Run-on sentence. The walking tour was about 2 hours long and I hadn’t eaten since breakfast back at the hotel (at this point it was about 1pm). My friends and I decided we’d try to find a good cheap place to eat a Venetian meal. After aimlessly walking around for 30 minutes we found a fantastic little spot… I ate Risotto al frutti di mare, Seafood risotto. It was pretty good!

After lunch we wandered around the city window shopping and people watching. We went into the museum of Murano glass–Venice is famous for it’s Murano glass. Every block had a few stores where you could buy everything from mini glass people and animals, to extravagant jewlery, dishes and vases. There was one shop that was selling the most amazing cups. They were replicas of Picasso’s characters in the most vibrant colors. I wanted so badly to buy a set… but they were 65 euro a piece!

Me and Marco on the gondola ride

On the gondola!

Later in the afternoon, we decided we’d take a ride on a gondola. I don’t figure I’ll be back to Venice anytime soon, so I wasn’t about to pass up the opportunity. It costs about 80-100 euro per gondola, no matter how many people go with you. We rode around in the gondola for about 40 minutes. It was very cool to see Venice from a different perspective. When you walk through the city you can’t see everything you would from the gondola. Anywho, it was pretty and fun and Marco, our gondola driver dude, sang some silly love songs. 

view from the canals of Venice

I still can't believe I was there!

San Marco's Basilica

Basilica San Marco -- Like many of the cathedrals in Italy, San Marco's has multiple architectural styles. When it takes a few hundred years to build, through the Gothic period, the Renaissance... naturally you'll have an interesting clash of decoration. There's so much detail too--very cool up close! The pictures that you see in each of the arches all all mosaics... Definitely worth seeing in person.

Venetian sunset

Venetian sunset -- This is, by far, my favorite picture I've taken this whole semester.