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We left for our trip to Italy around 3pm Wednesday afternoon for our 6:30pm flight out of JFK. The flight surprisingly left right on time (considering JFK, a big feat) and was relatively uneventful, except for our personal seat TVs not working (although we came prepared and loaded some movies on Larry’s laptop). I also was surprisingly able to sleep for a couple hours (thanks to a glass of white wine and a unisom).
We actually landed almost 2 hours early, around 8:30am Venice time (2:30 am NY time). After getting our luggage and some Euros, we were told we could take a bus into Venice for only 3 euros, so we jumped on that. We should have taken it as a bad sign though that no one else on the bus spoke English, because the bus dropped us off at the train station in Meastro, not Venice. A confusing hour or so but we figured it out and took a quick train to Venice, and got in around 10 am.
Our hotel was the Hotel Abbazia and was a really short walk from the train station and quite nice and very modern. Abbazia means abbey in Italian, and it looked like the hotel was built inside an old abbey. Our room was small but very nice. The most interesting part was that there was no shower – we had to sit in the bathtub with a hand held shower head which was…interesting. We dropped off our bags, freshened up a bit and then hit Venice.
We wandered through the streets and ally ways for a couple hours, checking out the beautiful old buildings, canals, and shops, ending up in Saint Marks Square.
After taking a look and shooting some pics of the Basilica, Doge Palace and Clock Tower and the rest of the square, Larry asked a passer by if he could take our picture. Instead of a picture though, Larry dropped to one knee and proposed Surprised and happy, I said yes! ☺
After that we took a break and got a drink to regroup and then wandered around a bit more and found a little place to get lunch, an osteria called pane e vino. I had a pizza and Larry had a lasagna.
We then continued on through Venice and back to our hotel where we slept for a couple hours.
After freshening up and sharing the great news with family and friends, we went back out for the night in Venice. Although Venice by day is beautiful, Venice by night is breathtaking. We took a water bus around the island to Zitarre, and from there took a walk through a part of town we hadn’t seen yet, and then to dinner in Campo de San Stephano. We ate outside at a restaurant called A Beccafino (which came recommended by Larry’s friend David). After a complimentary cocktail, we split a Risotto with seafood and a steak, and washed it down with a bottle of Pinot and some cappuccinos.
Following diner we walked around some more and headed back to St. Marks Square for one more visit (I wanted to get a picture of us together at the spot where it happened). We took a few more pictures and then walked along the water for a bit to see the Bridge of Sighs and a few other sites before taking the water bus back home and to bed to prepare for our trip to Florence in the morning.
Ah, Venice….what a day!