Saturday, October 15, 2011

Venice and the Colourful Island of Burano.

We were up early in the morning and got a taxi to the train station.  I made it to the train in plenty of time, but Anne ran back to check something and I was terrified that the train would go without her.  She made it back just in time.  Whew!

We arrived in Venice at about 10.30am, but our map wasn’t good so had a bit of difficulty finding our hotel.  Anne finally got google maps on her phone at great expense but it was the only way.  Hotel was great but about 3 stories up and only steep stairs to get there.  The first lot of stairs were all in marble – our suite was fantastic with marble bathroom and a lovely view out the loo window...!!

We dumped everything on the bed, grabbed cameras and started walking through Venice over bridges over the canals to the Vaparetto stop, taking photos on the way, then caught a Vaparetto to the Island of Burano.

Words cannot convey how I felt walking around that island among brightly coloured houses reflected in the canals, washing hanging out windows, stalls of lace and Murano glass, lace makers sitting outside lacemaking – it was so exciting to see. 

I should say here that Anne has prepared a wonderful birthday for me – when I got to Amsterdam, she gave me a whole pile of envelopes wrapped in a yellow ribbon.  Each envelope had a voucher in it, with some cash in Euro’s.  The vouchers were for a MAC lipstick in London, Clothes in Marks and Spencer, Glass Jewellery in Murano, Dinner in Milan, Handbag in Morocco etc… - I can’t remember all of them but there is a real wad of them there! 

So while we were in Burano, she helped me choose 3 necklaces of glass from Murano – so much to choose from, but we settled in a shop that was a bit higher quality and had really nice merchandise. 

After a few hours in Burano, we caught the vaparetto back to Venice, to St Marks Square.  It was right on sunset.  It was so beautiful, I have to admit to being a bit overwhelmed as I had never thought I would make Venice – thought my travelling days were over.  Venice is a city I had always wanted to see and had really given up thinking I would ever see it.  And yes – there were a few tears!

Despite my foot hurting, we decided we would walk back to the hotel via all the little alleyways and over the canals to the recommended restaurant.  Eat.  Then head to the hotel which wasn’t very far away.  This is about 4km so we took it slowly stopping for photos at every opportunity.  In the end I took 240 photos today – so a fair bit to work through yet.  Anne is much more restrained with only about 90!
Dinner was in a neat Pizzeria – this time we decided to share one, and thank goodness we did as it was HUGE!  We chose the one with Artichokes and although I wasn’t particularly hungry, I managed to eat my share – must have been all the walking!  I really like the Italian red wine too – thanks to Liz to telling me about it – I’m going to miss it!

Walked back to the hotel where I collapsed in a heap, too tired to even do my photos or write up my blog – went straight to sleep! Foot very sore and swollen – too much walking today, but Venice is a city of pavements – no cars, no bikes, everyone walks (or boats).

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