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October 21st 2013
Published: October 21st 2013
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We arrived in Venice after about 26 hours of travel, all uneventful and not terribly tiring. But how do you describe Venice? The thought 'once in your life you must go to Venice' keeps echoing in my mind. We are just 5 minutes walk from the Piazza Roma where the bus, water taxi or train drops you off in Venice. The map that we were given by Cristina was marked by circling the 3 bridges that you had to cross to get to the door of the apartment, first door on the right after the third bridge. And that is very much Venice. I start to recognize where I am by the bridge I am standing on. Our apartment is a cosy bachelor suite with stove, fridge and shower. We don't need anything else. We can walk anywhere in Venice in 10 min to half an hour. For two days we have not stopped walking, there is too much too see. We have walked the tourist routes that take you from broad plaza to tiny alley one person wide as you travel with 100s of others to the major sights. We have walked on paths that might get us in the right direction and had to back track or got us where we were going in half the time. We like those best. Again, how do I describe this city? There is a boat tied up outside our bathroom window, right at eye level. It's not a major canal so we only hear boats going through from time to time. The paths (not really streets) follow the major and minor canals until they turn at a wall and duck under a building built between two others but over your head. Sometimes you enter into a tiny dark space to turn a moment later into a plaza bright with sun, running water for drinking, steps beside the old well and caf├ęs with chairs set out on the cobble stones. There are gondolas scooting down every tiny water way, disappearing under a bridge and around a corner just as mysteriously as the labyrinth of paths. We look up and see vines and trees and realize that the wall we are following contains a court yard garden hidden from our view. We turn again and find ourselves on a canal that travels straight for more than two blocks and has 5 bridges and paths on both sides. Most paths on the tourist route have store after store after store of carnival masks, Murano glass, and leather bags, interspersed with pastry shops, cheeses and salami shops and the constant flow of pizza windows and larger restaurants. Underneath it all is the sound of bells. Every plaza hosts a church and all the bells ring throughout the day, only to end at 7:30pm with 98 ringing notes, we hope to find out why. Good Night and Sweet Dreams

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22nd October 2013

Miss you
Thanks so much for the beautiful pictures and the wonderful words. Makes us feel a part of your spectacular journey. Had our first snow here and it stayed on the ground overnight. Kind of dreary but finding the couch blankets and turning on the fireplace almost makes it better. Looks like you're doing and seeing all that Venice has to offer. Wish Marc a happy birthday for us. Hugs from the Lake
2nd November 2013

Buon Giorno Gillian
Hi Gillian: We were in Venice about 5 years ago in October and I can identify with the weather and the scenery and all the foods. We loved walking in all the different districts. It was like entering into a fairytale land. There is nothing like it in the world. I notice you got yourself into the pashmina scarf style. This is big over there and the varieties are endless. Enjoy the rest of your time. I shall follow with interest as my roots are Italian.

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