By Rail or by Water

VENICE DAY 1 In the morning, we had an especially good breakfast at the B&B because Cristiano wanted to treat us to an Italian Easter breakfast of hard boiled eggs, salami and a delicious breads. Then we were off for the train. I was so glad that we splurged on first class for the four hour trip. The scenery was beautiful and we were able to sit in reserved seats facing one another.

Train ride

Arriving in Venice is like arriving nowhere I’ve ever been before. Of course you know that there will be water for roadways and yet nothing quite prepares you to step out of a train station and face a wide swath of rippling water for a road. People in Rome described Venice as beautiful, unique and even strange and it is all of those things.

Water taxi

When you walk the back canals and walkway of Venice, there is only the shush of water lapping against boats and your footsteps on stones. The soft sounds of water and the absence of motors combine to create a sense of other-worldliness. All of us were smitten immediately.

Gondoliers Gondolas Rio Sunset on a canal

On our first trek out of the hotel, we quickly became lost. Fortunately, I’d heard that this is a part of the experience and we didn’t allow it to bother us. Of course the blue skies and soft sun helped our spirits and eventually we found St. Mark’s Square. I’d wanted to see this for some time ever since I’d seen a black and white photo of my aunt as a teen standing in the square surrounded by pigeons. Apparently the pigeons are not as welcome as they once were, but there were many people feeding them and taking photos with them anyway.

A corner of St Marks Square Boys at St Marks Basilica

After a while of exploring, the temperature began to drop so we found a bar near the Accademia bridge. It was warm and had good pizza and that’s all we needed.