Saturday, June 27, 2009

Reports from the Lido deck..

I could have stayed in Venice another week. The Venetian islands have so much to offer and were so intriguing that they require a full day each to be adequately seen. Our hotel was on Lido - yes we said many "Lido deck" jokes and no there is no nude beach there. Thats a big fat rumor. There is a beach though and I dipped my toes in the Adriatic just to expand my toes' horizons. Lido is not bery touristy, but had the cheapest food of all the islands so we made our lunch and dinners end up there. Two of the three nights I must admit we ate at a Chinese restaurant. Before you judge, think about eating the SAME genre of food for 5 weeks straight. Then, alas, a new type of food appears that is half the price of the norm. Well, if you are still judging, think that from Italy, I am alot closer to China then in the U.S. therefore it MUST be better than Pei Wei... Ok I'm done...Nights at Lido mainly consisted of going to the BluMoon Cafe at the beach. It was the most chill atmosphere, playing fun music with a bar, rooms with bean bags, and an outside patio (next to the beach of course). It was nice to be able to sip some wine, dance a little, walk the beach, or just sit and chat. I took a ton of pictures of it because I love the decor and plan on imitating some of it for my room.

So Venice! I had a mediocre expectations because I only knew of what I'd heard: St. Mark's, gondolas, and pigeons. Well, St. Mark's was golden (literally) and the square was filled during the day with people and pigeons, and we took a gondola ride for an amazing price. Honestly besides that, Venice is really small and quiet. As soon as you wonder a street off of St. Mark's Square it is quietly open with a few local italians here and there. Thats what I liked about it- that though it had one touristy area it still felt like a smaller town.
My favorite part of the trip though was our day ventures to the surrounding islands of Torcello, Burano, and Murano. Torcello was somewhat abandoned- the Luckenback of Italy. People go to see a couple sights just to say they did and very very few live there (maybe 10).
The highlight for me was our next island: Burano. I'd watched some travel channel special on Burano so I was excited to finally see it with my own eyes. I was definately blown away when we docked from our boat,

-- oh yeah, p.s. getting around Venice = taking a Vaporetto, which is like a bus but on water. This trip has cultured my travel styles.. train, metro, bus, boat, mini metro, town escalators)--

anyway, Burano is gorgeous. Its the home of handmade lace but that wasnt a very big deal for me. The houses are all painted different colors. From hot pink to a passionate purple, eye-stinging yellow to sky blue, every color of the rainbow was represented. I had so much fun getting lost in teh colorful town and taking 8 million artsy pictures. It was one of my favorites for sure, not so touristy but insanely gorgeous. There is no way people living there could ever be sad. I mean with a hot pink house? No way..

Our next idland hop was Murano, home of glss. We saw men molding glass at a factory and thenwalked among the shops to see the creations of their handiwork. You had to be careful though because some stores sold fake Murano glass that was actually from China. It was mostly very expensive but it was neat to se glass art and jewelry that was "imported" from the furnace next door. Shipping and handling for their inventory was probably a man named Francesco, holding a box of hot, fresh glass.. or at least thats how I imagine it.

I was sad to leave the island on Friday, but by taking the number 1 Vaporetto I got a chance to see it all (it stops at every stop along the Grand Canal) and say ciao ciao Venice!