Venice Water, You Take a Boat

Ah, Venice! The city of love. The city of magic. The city of...I'm probably just making these up. So, what is Venice? It's definitely an experience, that's for sure.
Our original plan was to take the train into Venice--the train station is merely a 5 minute drive from our hotel--but there was some construction, and we missed our train. So we decided to drive in.
For those who are unfamiliar with Venice...it's a city built on mud. Literally. Mud and trees. Oh, and the main thoroughfares are canals. Just in case somebody's been hiding under a little bubble.
So, we park just outside the old part of town. ---HISTORY LESSON--- okay, so not so much history, but just a little thing to remember. You see, since Venice is such a historic town, they can't really renovate and fix things, although they do the best they can with the laws that are in place to protect the history. Great for us, kinda expensive for them. Anyway, so the city has only changed a little for the past couple hundred years. So, no cars in the city, just like during the Renaissance.
Now, to imagine what the most powerful community could do during that time, well, it's amazing. We first got on a waterbus to Piazza di San Marco (St. Mark's Square) which is a marvel by itself. The square is larger than two football fields, and is surrounded by Baroque and Renaissance architecture and even some French Napoleonic influence. St. Mark's Basilica is not only a classy church, but decked out with gold mosaics and everything. No photo's are allowed inside, so, sorry. But seriously, it was huge, like the two churches we saw before, but the shimmering gold inside of this one makes it a treasure for sure.
We decided that we would skip the palace, which I'm sure would have been fun, but we weren't in the mood for museum ventures. We wanted to see Venice.
So we walked around, passed over Ponte di Rialto, one of the most famous bridges in the world, and saw a few churches. After lunch, we decided to go to Murano and Burano, two more islands of Venice which specialize in glass and lace, respectively.
We saw glass blown in Murano, and walked the streets for a bit before we took off for Burano. Unfortunately, it was late when we got to Burano, but just the look of the island made you reflect on the type of life one would live here. It was beautiful, but really laid back.
We took back to the main island to explore some more. We didn't want to pay 90 euro for a gondola ride (although they are just like every movie or tv show portrays them...I'm always reminded of Pepe le Piu...), so we thought we'd just take a later waterbus back to the car.
Venice by day is great, but Venice by dark...wow. I must say I'm crazy about lights on water. Somehow, the shimmer reminds me of a treasure even greater than gold. Something that no one person can grasp onto and claim for him/herself. Anyway, to see all the great buildings with their chandeliers turned on, and the lights on the river...it was not only an experience, but it was so relaxing.
Venice was great, but we're also looking forward to getting into Austria tomorrow. Tomorrow will be spent in Klagenfurt, so here's to happy trails! Pics of Venice will be up later.

So...the other thing I forgot to mention was that I was kinda kicking myself for not looking up some information before we took off. I kept looking for the cafe that Indiana Jones comes up into, and I was thinking the entire time about The Italian Job's chase scene through Venice (which they had to beg to do because of the disruption it caused). So many films have actually been filmed in Venice, it would have been cool to see some of those places. Who knows, maybe I did!! I did see the boats Indy destroys as he's fighting the one dude, but not even Mr. Garmin could find the library. However, just seeing how Venice is set up made me appreciate each and every one of those scenes. It also made them make sense as far as the geography of the scenes. So, the films I thought of were: Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, The Italian Job, and Ocean's 12. Any others come to mind? Leave a comment...

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