My countdown clock says it is one day and 14 hours to departure but in reality I’m leaving home in less than 24 hours. I had originally planned to leave on Saturday, Oct. 11 and make the Phoenix-Philadelphia-Venice flight in one day without a lay-over in Philadelphia, but as the date approached I had second thoughts about being able to make the connection in Philly. I don’t like tight connections and would rather have at least four hours between flights so that I can stretch my legs before sitting in a tight space for 9 hours.
I have yet to book a hotel in Philly and will soon be doing that. There are many hotels within a one mile radius of the airport so I don’t foresee a problem finding a room. I will now have a day in the city of brotherly love and since the Venice flight leaves in the early evening, I may make a jaunt into the city in the morning.
Now to my plans and itinerary for Venice. Well, I have neither a plan nor an itinerary! I’m going to go with the flow, play it by ear, and wait ‘till I’m there to see where each day takes me. Advance booking is not necessary for most of the sights I have on my Venice wish list, except for the tour of the Doges Palace and the tour to the synagogues offered by the Jewish Museum. I checked the Venice Civic Museum website and there are plenty of spots available for next week so I’ll make the reservation as soon as I arrive. I emailed the Jewish Museum and I’m still waiting for their reply but I’m not expecting to have any problems booking the tour.
I will be staying in a cute little apartment known as Trapolin that I found in Nan’s website. It is located in Cannaregio, a five minute walk from the Ca' d'Oro vaporetto stop. The location is very convenient between the S. Lucia train station and the Rialto Bridge, not too far from Al Palazzetto, where I stayed in 2006. It is also relatively close to Fondamenta Nuove from where the ACTV vaporetti to the islands depart.
I’m hoping to do some island hopping, mainly to S. Michele, Burano and Torcello. I hope this time to make a stop on S. Michele. After passing by it a few times on previous trips, Annie’s entry on this beautiful island and its cemetery provided me with the incentive to put it high on the list.
I’m going to buy the Chorus Pass and make good use of it. I’m grateful to Annie for being such an amazing source of information in regards to all things Venetian. My Google map shows a number of churches that if I have the time, I‘d like to visit. I’ll probably see a handful at the most. I have place-marked a few inexpensive restaurants I found in Shannon’s book and that are near the apartment.
I’m traveling very light this time and limiting myself to two guide books: Chow! Venice, Time Out Venice, and a map guide published by Knopf. They all were recommended by Annie and I’m very thankful for her expert advice!
In regards to luggage I purchased a new set last May because my old 22” Travel Pro looked so sad and tattered. The new luggage is the same brand name but instead of buying a 22’ I went for a 19” rollaboard and a rolling tote bag. I like this combination because my 22’ was becoming a bit heavy (or should I say I’m getting weak in my ability to lift up the bag over my shoulders) and with these two I divide the weight in a more manageable fashion. They are a beautiful color of ocean blue and are relatively light. Since this color doesn’t hide dirt and scuffs very well I ordered a luggage cover for the 19”. The cover, called a luggage sock, is custom made to the bag’s measurements and fits very tightly. I had a bit of trouble slipping it on the bag and wonder what would happen when TSA decides to open my bag. I hope they take the time to put it back in place. I have visions of my bag arriving at the carousel naked and finding the sock either inside my bag or loose in the carousel.
Here is the bag sporting the luggage sock followed by the 'au naturel' look.
My Venice stay will end on October 20 at which time I fly to Madrid to join my husband. We will pick up a rental car at the airport make our way to Seville, making an overnight stop in Toledo. I hope to do at least a blog entry from Seville and give Kathy a preview of this wonderful city. We will mostly stay in Seville and do an overnight visit to Conil de la Frontera in Cadiz to visit my Sicilian cousin. He opened a restaurant a couple of years ago and I’m eager to catch-up with him in this new endeavor of his. On Oct. 29 we will be taking a ferry to Morocco. I’m so looking forward to our Moroccan adventure! On our itinerary are the cities of Fez, Marrakesh and Casablanca. A camel ride in the desert is also planned and also a visit to Meknes and Volubilis.
I’m so excited to be sharing Venice with Anne and have her as my roomie and travel mate. Blogging from Venice is a possibility if we come across an internet point.