venice.

2 letters today grade 5!

When I was little I used to look at the pictures of venice and imagine the people who lived there and the water being out your front door and what they did for jobs. Lots of years later, we are here and I cant believe it. Our overnight train from Rome arrived this morning at 730. We stepped off the train and directly into a KFC where I forced the guys to buy a donut so I could use the bathroom. Once outside, I lost my heart. Some of you know that my family loves Frankfort, Michigan. Part of the reason i love it is the low thrum you hear from the boats making their way out to the lake. Well. It’s like that here all the time except its Italy.

There are canals running everywhere with more canals branching out from them. There are big intersections with all sizes and shapes of boats idling through. We counted at least 20 at one point. They drive on the opposite side though, even though the cars here in Italy drove on the right side like we do. They all go very slowly, with the ambulances and police having their own boats too. Morgan and Levi saw a cop with a radar checking the boats speeds off the dock. The water is green and beautiful although I think it’s part sewer even tho it doesnt smell. Every canal we saw was the green color with little bridges everywhere and houses whose basements are the sea.

We dropped our bags at The Silk Road hostel where instead of bunk beds we were given basically a privat(E) apartment that was nice and clean. Then we started walking. We first went down some of the market streets where there are lots of blown glass and mask shops. The masks are a huge thing here because of the Carnival of Venice. They are from years ago when people would wear elaborate masks to hide their identity so they could act more freely apart from their social status. There are lots of these stores here and even design your own mask shops.

There are no streets or cars here, only a maze of cobblestone alleys to find your way through. Very few street signs to help us out but usually we end up at another canal and figure out where we are. The Italians aren’t a very friendly people as far as smiling at you or greeting you on the streets. We got lunch to go at this place I’d seen online called Del Moro. We had fresh pasta in a couple minutes that we ate outside by the canal. We were sitting there eating and a middle aged couple from England asked if we’d like to split a gondola ride so we talked with them while we ate and found out they were from Devon and were celebrating their 20th anniversary. They were super nice and wanted a picture of us all when we split ways and we got their name and number so we can keep in touch. The gondola ride was amazing.

It’s very peaceful in Venice anyways with no cars and quiet canals but on a gondola…even better. I’d heard the gondoliers dont sing like they used to but we got a nice one who sang to us in Italian and whistled while he rowed us around through the water and it made for an awesome experience. The gondoliers all wear a striped shirt with a (F)lat straw hat and a red kerchief with dark pants. After the gondola ride we got tickets and rode around on a boat on the Grand Canal for awhile. The Grand Canal is huge and full of boats and yachts and little dinghies. We made friends with another couple from Ireland who were hilarious and an older couple from the UK.

We ate supper in St. Mark’s Square at a pasta place before heading back down the alleys to our hostel for the night. This old, story-filled city is definitely one of my favorite places.

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