29.04.2006 27 °C
So Milan was nice or so the train ride through was. A couple hours later that night our train stopped suddenly and some police came through ordering everyone to get off the train. We were sooo close about only 20 minutes from our destination with still no place to stay so we were in a bit of a hurry as it was about 9:30pm. We got off and started talking to a woman who was living in our destination city, Venice. She was a retired german lady who spent half her years in Venice and the other in Germany. She was so helpful and said that once we got to Vencie she would take us to her island where she could show us a few spots where we would maybe get a place. We would definitly find a place, the problem was that Venice is known to be the most expenisve city in italy. So we arrived very late and it was hard to see a lot but we could tell that this was going to be an enitrely different world. We got out of the train station and arrived at the bus station, or harbour as we saw it and took our cute little ferry bus to the island.We arrived at her island which was very well located, right across from the main island San Marco by a minute boat ride. The first place we stopped at we went for just because we were lazy and tired. It was the biggest room we have stayed in yet as normally it is dorm rooms for the surronding schools. The island was completly shut down and quiet but soo beautiful with the waterway streets and peoples boats parked outside their houses. The next morning we went and got breakfast from a grocery store and sat on the edge of the water for a while. Venice is really a beautiful place. I hasd heard so many bad things aboout it but we really had a good time here. The water doesnt smell, mavžybe in the summer, it is expensive but you just have to watch yourself. We went over to San Marco and went looking at all the tourist places. In through the windy streets looking at all the wonderful shops where I would love to spend my money. So what we have been doing throughout our trip is finding really great souvineers that are significant of the places we have been. So Josh decided he wanted carnival masks. In venice they are everywhere and the most skilled of people have shops here with spectacular masks decorating every inch of the space. In one shop we met the man behind all mask making in movies such as Eyes Wide Shut. So we spent a good couple of hours finding the perfect masks for ourselves. The markets here are really famous and busy. I was in heaven over all jewllery and clothes. After spending lots we had to find a place to stay this night so we called a few places out of our lonely planet book and found one for much cheaper than the other place so we went got our stuff and moved to the new location which was about 30 seconds away from all the markets and shopping!!! We had gotten bus(boat) passes for the day so we took the number 1 and went for a ride on the grand canal and the outskirts of the city. Venice is a city with sooo much character all the buildings are very old and original and most look like the need tons of work but that is the charm of the buildings and it really is beautiful. On every block there is construction on one or more of the buildings due to the sinking of Venice. Just by looking at the buildings slightly you can see many that are leaning badly to one side or one of the walls in leaning inwards or outwards. Its a sad thought to think this city that is one of a kind might not be around some day soon. But I can tell you they are doing there best to save them. The rest of the night we spent getting lost in the streets of venice and then went to eat. We thought we were being thrifty and watched what we ordered and then came the bill which was much more expensive then we imagined because the tiny pop and water that we ordered were more than five dollars each, thats were we werent careful but its ok becase we are in Venice. The next day we were up early to go do more exploring. The city is much larger than I imagined. It has a population of almost 300,000 spread out over many islands. So we stayed on the main ones and stuck with some of the more popular places. One of my absolute favorite souvineers that I found was the calender of hot priests in Venice. I mean what kind of city puts there priests on a calender. Unfortunatly I decided this was one of those souvineers that I probably did not need I did get some pictures though. The gondola rides looked wonderful how ever they are extremly expenisve so we never did take one but there was a calender for all the gondola operators just in case I felt left out.
The next day we went to a few churches and packed our stuff up for our last trip down the grand canal.