When last we left our intrepid traveler, it was Monday and she had just made a sandwich for herself and was writing in her blog...
Well, of course, Shannon called shortly thereafter and said, "Hey, what are you doing?"
Which with Shannon, means we're off to start on some new adventure. And we did. Basically doing a mini-cicchetti tour, stopping at three bars for cicchetti and wine - one in some ally somewhere (which really could describe most of Venice), one along the Fondamente Nova (or is it Nuova, I can never remember), and one across the small canal from the church of San Giovanni e Paolo (that last one just for a glass of wine).
By then it was time time to head to La Cantina and our wine tasting with Nan from the Living Venice Blog. If I can find my notes, I'll make this a separate entry. But something like 13 of us enjoyed six different (i.e., wines we don't find in the States) Italian wines (3 white, 3 red and some snacks), some interesting facts and good conversation before splitting up for a short while before our dinner reservation at ... oh shoot, can't remember the restaurant name. Anyway, that will be a separate post too.
In the break between wine tasting and dinner, a few of us popped over to my place so others could partake of the WiFi but Mindy struggled with my little netbook keyboard and screen though I think Chris managed to hook his iPhone into the network.
Then onto a dinner (we were there for about three hours and as I said, I'll write about that in a separate post), and then home after midnight to catch up on emails and such and watch an episode of Glee on my iPhone before turning in.
Originally I thought I'd have Tuesday free to wander around Venice. I didn't realize that Shannon had scheduled a brewery tour with an acquaintance of from when she lived in Venice. I'll probably do this as a separate post too, but we took a train (Shannon, Nan, Ian and I) out to Treviso to visit Andrea's brewery (Morgana) and have lunch.
We got back to Venice (and my apartment) about 4:20 or so, and within fifteen minutes of my "rest time" the phone rang again, "Hey, what are you doing?"
Jen and Chris were at their apartment, drinking, and Shannon wanted to know if I wanted to head down there to join them (they are staying in Dorsoduro and we are in Cannareggio).
Sure give me 10 minutes.
We met at the vaporetto at San Marcuola, and road down the Grand Canal (I love saying that) to their place. By the way, it can take about 25 - 30 minutes on the vaporetto to get there. Along the way, Jim, Colleen, and Mindy got on board with their new friend and tour guide, Antonio (you'll have to ask them about that; it's their story). Antonio, Jim and Colleen departed at San Toma though and Mindy returned with us to her pad (she's staying with Chris and Jen) and the drinking ensued.
Unbelievably, about 7:30 or so I looked at Shannon and said, "I can't believe I'm getting hungry." We had an awful big lunch. By now Colleen and Jim had joined us and all agreed we would go out somewhere for a bit to eat. Shannon tracked down Ian and we agreed to meet at Taverna San Trovaso for dinner (think I'll make that a separate post too). It was about a five minute walk from where we were, and on the way back to the Accademia vaporetto stop for our ride home (Chris, if you're reading this, it's just down the calle from that cicchetti place we liked near Pensione Accademia).
After dinner, Ian Shannon and I returned to Cannareggio and to our respective apartments for the night (again, close to midnight).
Yesterday, I intentionally awoke early because I wanted to wander around Piazza San Marco before the hoards of tourists and because we were meeting for a Secret Itinerary Tour of the Doges Palace at 8:50. You see a little bit of a different side of Venice if you ride the vaporetti before eight, I think. Lots of children with their parents, and teens, heading off to school and Italians heading to work.
I wandered around St. Marks, admiring the architecture and listening to my Perfect Traveller audio guide for a while before meeting the rest of the crew in front of the Doges palace (again, I think another entry - lots of teasing going on here, no?) Let's just say, it was a really good tour.
Afterward, Chris, Jen, Mindy and I snaked our way back toward their apartment, stopping for a quick bite of pizza along the way (Chris, if you're reading this, it was the same place we stopped when we were here with the girls in piazza San Stefano). After grabbing the shopping bags (and taking a quick break), we walked over to Zattere and caught the vapporetto to San Basilio and the Billa market.
Oh, and while we were snaking our way to the pizza place, I took a major tumble down a bridge (but not into a canal ;D). And no, I hadn't even had a drink yet! Anyway, bruised palm which already looks better, and ice on my knee seems to have fixed me up just fine.
Okay - so back to the Bila market, where we purchased items for our dinner that night. Shannon and I were cooking for the SlowTrav crew and then some (ended up being like 14 people), so we needed ingredients. Love the Italian markets and need to run over to my Bila, hopefully this morning, to get Kinder Eggs for Sammi. Back on to the vaporetto, one stop, and to the apartment, for another quick break before we headed out again.
This time we were in search of some jewelry. Colleen had bought this beautiful necklace the day before and we were in search of the store in San Polo. Unfortunately, the address we had, we just could not seem to find, as it all seemed residential and the calle was not well marked. I do not know though if it was because the address was bad, or my navigating...
Along the way though we stumbled upon Vizio Virtu for chocolates which are quite delish - like little potent explosions in your mouth. On the way back too (we decided to walk rather than get the Vapporetto again), we found a different jewelry store and made assorted purchases. We also ran into Susan (who we'd also run into at lunch), funny enough. Oh, and spoke to Gail Hecko of Gail's Great Escapes. She and her partner were in the area, so we made arrangements for them to stop by Jen, Chris and Mindy's for a drink (they already had dinner plans, so couldn't join us). Somewhere in here too, I got a text from Shannon, "Hey, what are you doing?" I couldn't reply though because I did something wrong when loading time on my phone (later figured out I'd transposed two numbers) but eventually she called, and arranged to meet us also.
So back to Party Central we went where we chilled, enjoyed a drink with Gail and Roberto and then Shannon and I cooked dinner. Shannon made this great baked pasta dish with radicchio from Treviso (though we're not sure it was the real stuff because technically it's early in the season) and I made a pasta, bean and sausage soup (can't call it pasta fagioli according to Nan because it's not traditional), we also put out some cheese and crackers to start, had a side salad with dinner and some assorted olives, mushrooms and artichokes and for dessert, Norma and Lou brought a tray of yummy cookies and Anne made her delicious tiramisu. With us being who we are, there was also plenty of wine, prosecco and beer flowing!
I hope everyone had a good time.
Got home about 11:20 and crawled into bed (oh, but watched the last episode of Glee that I brought with me. May try to download some more for the flight home now though).