Today was a much better day in Venice than yesterday. We actually could find our way around that crazy city. We woke up sort of early and left Villa Dori on the shuttle bus to head in for our days activities. The first thing that we did when we got to the city was head to the train station to reserve our tickets for Florence tomorrow. (We may not reserve our seats anymore in Italy because it is 3 times as expensive as it was in Germany. From the reservation booth we went to buy tickets for the Carnival show at the Teatro San Gallo; however, the internet was down so the 20 minute line we waited in was pointless. We were told to go to the tourist information center in San Marco Plaza.
We weren't in a specific rush to get there since we knew our way around, so we did a little bit of shopping and we were hungry so we decided to find something to eat. We walked by the museum of natural history to try to sneak a peek, but they closed the door on us saying they were no longer open for the day...Damn Venetians. Luckily for us though, Nono ristorante was only a 10 minute walk from there. Turns out it is closed on Wednesdays....by this time we were both starving. We just turned the corner and sat down at the first place we came to. Right next to the fish market!!! It stunk! But the food and wine was very good!!!! After lunch we made our way across the Rialto Bridge towards San Marco. We grabbed some Gelato on the way at our favorite shop. When we got to the tourist center at San Marco, we waited in line for another 20 minutes to be told that we need to go to the theater to buy our tickets! So for the third time we had to go some where else for the tickets...we were thinking this show had better be good if we're going through all this trouble. We walked about 50 meters from San Marco and found the theater where we were finally able to buy our tickets. A nice thing that we didn't know was that included in the price was a buffet dinner and all the wine you could drink from the region for the first hour before the show!!!! Awesome!
So we had our tickets, now what should we do? Well, we needed a bank to withdraw some money to take a gondola-gondola ride! (all the "drivers" when you walk by say "gondola gondola", so I said that for the rest of the day when we saw one!) We went back to the Grand Canal where we knew for sure where the gondola's were and where we knew a bank was. (It's hit or miss to find a gondola in the side canals. Plus we wanted a good ride). We found our gondola and decided to take the classic ride. This type we were taken to Casanova's house, the Opera house of Marco Polo, and some other places that the driver was talking about, but we couldn't really understand him so we just smiled and knodded and ewwed and ahhhed like good tourists do. We did learn some interesting stuff though, like Venice is composed of a cluster of 187 little islands...that was pretty cool. We got some good pictures from the Gondola as well.
After our nice ride through the canals we decided to walk around the shops again, get another gelato, and look for a museum to go into. By this time it was 5 o'clock...we think...we lost track of time today. We know that we sat and people-watched in San Marco's Square. The pigeons there are absolutely crazy. Little kids would hold out there hands with bread and the pigeons would cover them, literally 10-15 pigeons were on this one kid at the same time. REDICULOUS, and nasty! We were in the square for about an hour or so just watching. Then we realized that we could go up into the tower next to the Basilica...we could get some great phots from all the way up there! Except that it was almost 7:15 by the time we realized that and we had to head to the theater. We went in the theater and had our dinner. It was an assortment of traditional Venetian finger foods and 3 different kinds of wines (2 white, 1 red...we had the red, it was good!) There were all sorts of different costumes and dresses all around the eating area, and when we went in there were only 4 people putting on this play. They did a great job, it was interesting because they showed projections on the walls as well as the play itself. We learned about the history of Venice and San Marco, we learned about Marco Polo, Casanova, and why Venice is known for its masks, and the Carnivale!!! It was all vey cool!
When the play was over, we took a few night shots of San Marco Square and started our journey back to the pick up point...in the dark! It wasn't as hard as we thought it was going to be, we felt like we've walked to streets of Venice so much we could do it with our eyes closed! (Not really that good, but sort of). We head out to Florence tomorrow morning on the 10:30 train, it should put us there by 1ish. We had a lot of fun in Venice, it's definitely a place we would come back to. We hope that you enjoy the pictures from here as well. We'll update again when we find our way to Florence. Ciao, and Buona Notte!