The day began early. We had to be at the lobby at 8am. I rushed through my breakfast of yoghurt, fruit and espresso with latte and made it in time. It was not a sunny bright morning like yesterday and so we took umbrellas with us. We knew it was going to be a cloudy ,wet day. And we were right. It poured all the way to Venice, at Venice and back too though that did not stop us from walking down the squares at Venice and discovering the magic of the lagoon.
Alessandra, our hostess for the day turned up on time though a little breathless at the hotel lobby and we all got set to go. The drive to Venice by bus was about an hour and a half on a bright sunny day. But given the fact that it was raining, it took us about two hours to reach the mainland. A private steamer boat was organized to take us to the lagoon of the Mediterranean sea.
Fun facts about Venice that Alessandra shared with us on the way – Venice has about 150 canals, 100 odd bridges and 117 small islands. The map of Venice looked like that of a large fish. Marcopolo, is a famous merchant from Venice. I loved the way Alessandra spoke English. I jotted down some of the words that she spoke differently just to share them with you –
Venees ees is a maagneeficent city. Its a peety Venees is sinking. Many beeldings are being ristorrrrrred on the soorrrface. The poblik trunsporrrrrtaeshun is maagneeeeeficent. The seembol of Venees is a winged lion. You will see the buhseelikah, cut-eeh-dhral and the kanaals in gut kondeeeshun. Some of the ‘otels are cared for by the locaaal administreashun. Normully, the Gondola is pooshed and pooled
in a cerrrrrrrrten way.Peeeeeeeeeeeek yourrrrrrrrr umbrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrelas everrrrrrrrrybodhee.
Whew, that is very exhausting. Try it aloud and you will know what I mean.
The dinner was another night of wining and dining to say it in a few words. We were dropped off at various points downtown in groups.We had been sorted into groups of 5 couples each and the restaurants were pre-decided too. The reason behind this maybe because the bistros and ristorantes in Verona are really cosy and small and won’t take more than 30 people at any point of time. Restaurants here are not concerned about how many table covers they have had for the night but the quality of experience they are able to give their patrons.So typically you won’t find people queuing up in front of ristorantes because there are several in every lane, every square, every piazza. I also think the revenue that they earn per table amounts to quite a sum what with patrons ordering the most exquisitely prepared seafood or bottles and bottles of wine.
So this place our group went to was another cosy restaurant that could seat only about 25 odd people. The ambiance was warm and friendly. The unique thing about the quaint ristorante were the unfinished walls- we could see the layers of brick and concrete and it was left unpainted – the walls also had little earthen pots that had stuffed witches on brooms hanging from them. Maybe they were trying that for a theme. It did have an effect.
While the others enjoyed seafood, octopuses, squid and everything in the sea, we were happy eating pasta with gentle flavour of herbs. I must tell you that I have begun enjoying my wine experiences. I had a glass of white wine and enjoyed every sip. I am so intrigued about wines now and I have promised myself an education about wines when I get home.
I also had a dessert that I have to write you about. It was Grappa with almonds and I have to tell you. I had a near death experience. It was H.E.A.V.E.N. Read about Grappa here
Tomorrow we plan a walking tour of Verona….and hopefully some shopping too.