Monday, 4 July 2016

Up Early, After Breakfast,

we were Venice bound,

 at our first stop we noticed this band's Reunion tour lorry, the band is Pooh, who over the course of their career have sold over 100 million records,

at our stop, this is the menu that was offered,

 an here is one of the biggest coffee machines we have yet seen,

a croissant and coffee,

Dave the driver taking a break,

along with tour guide Gustavo, what a great pair, that looked after us all so well,

we booked into the Hotel Residence Elite,

which was very nice, it is just outside of Venice, 

we had to take a tram into town, but this was strange,

only one iron rail,

and here was the tram,

at the end of the line, how neat, using one rail had halved the cost of materials at one stoke,

and what a nice greeting as one of the boats, I am guessing a Riva passes us by,

Diana strikes the pose,

as I spotted another of these immaculate craft,

we started our tour,

walking by some building work with materials being lowered,

by this crane,

we stopped by one of the many canals,

some seemed hardly wide enough to squeeze a boat through,

the streets were narrow too,
the buildings looking so imposing,

and what a selection of shops,

with dresses,

and masks for sale,

did I mention ice cream shops?

one sold,

and a happy customer,

or two!

with more sales on the way,

we moved into the square, I could barely get this tall building in the frame,

it was only by going into this narrow passageway I could make the shot,

we walked through narrow uncrowded streets,

with buildings over hanging the pavements,

beneath the Campanile, the bell-tower of St. Mark's an artist waits for customer,

and here is one shopkeeper that had a customer, us,

purchase made,

we continued our walk,

everything was so picture perfect,

it was just a shame the day was so overcast,

Diana looking at one of the canals,

over the bridge,

and onward,

through streets and shops,

till we reached another bridge,

and stopped for a picture,

we walked across a corner of a square,

and into another street of shops,

this one selling fantastical masks for the masked balls that so often take place,

we were now by the main canal,

and making our way to the main square,

where we are going to meet the rest of the group,

we went to the Rialto bridge, but unfortunately it was covered with material as it was being worked on,

not to worry, we walked over it anyway,

past more shops,

until we arrived at St Mark's Basilica,

and it's bell tower,

and imposing buildings which line the square,

St. Mark's,

with Diana in the foreground,

the painting above the door of St. Mark's,

we meet with the group for a demonstration of glass blowing at Murano Glass,

the guide explained a little of what we were going to see,

then it was down to the craftsman,

to show us how it was done,

it all looked so easy,

but he is a master of his trade,

just a quick blow,

and there it is,

some more glass added,


into the head of a horse,

in no time at all,

then the body,

and it was done, the glassblower then demonstrated how hot the glass still was by placing a piece of paper on it, which immediately burst into flames,

there were so many glass product available, but this was the only room we were allowed to take pictures in, we did however make a small purchase,

and another purchase here,

we continued our walk,

Diana all smiles,

past the clock,

a panorama of the far side of the square,

and a panorama of one side,

and of Diana, St.Mark's behind her


then animal over the painting at the top of the door,

and St.Mark at the top of the basilica,

with an angel,

we made our way back to the meeting point,

where Dave and Gustavo were waiting,

I think they were bonding,

St.Mark's and the bell tower,

next for us,

more shops,

so many to chose from,

so little time,

as we were going to take a boat or I should say a gondola,

this was the pick up,

and drop off point,

we were both so excited,

our boat had come in,

and we were with the General and his family,

all set,

and we were on our way,

I was tempted to sing the ice cream song, just one cornetto,

but to save any embarrassment of my bad singing I did not,

we passed a few low bridges,

as we continued through,

the narrow canals,

there seemed to be hardly anyone else here,

which was nice,

but every so often we did encounter some traffic,

and we met that occasional traffic jam,

one of the houses with it's own boat,

a very tight corner,

and low bridge,

then peace and quiet,

as we neared a jetty,

and passed a few more houses,

and under a few,

more bridges,

and look through to another canal,

past buildings that could be private homes or hotels,

or in this case restaurants,

we were having a whale of a time,

as we passed more bridges,

and restaurants,

we were back onto one of the larger canals as a water taxi passes a building on the other side of the canal,

on that side so many imposing buildings,

on the side we were on more restaurants,

on the opposite side more huge buildings,

as the gondola in front of us makes way,

so many buildings to take pictures of,

as water taxis ply their trade,

another waterside hotel,

and a view from the canal of the bell tower,

I am not sure what this building is,

but this is what is on top of it,

gondolas at rest,

we turned left,

back into the smaller canals,

we were nearing the dropping off point,

as we stopped an official was taking a photograph of one of the tourists,

as this figure looked on,

a hand for Diana,

and we were back onshore,

all smiles,

next back to shopping,

no change there then!

so many things to buy,

so little time,

we made our way back in to the square,

by now the sun was starting to go down,

and we decided to sit and have a drink,

in the square,

and listen to some of the live music,

it was all so nice,

as we waited for our drinks I zoomed in on the top of St. Marks,

our drinks arrived,

'Cheers!', from myself,

and 'Cheers!', from Diana,

it was all so perfect,

and there were plenty of nibbles with the drinks,

and what a view across the square,

drinks over we now made our way to the water taxis,

that were waiting for us,

we were soon on our way,

passing some of the buildings we had seen before,

and some new to us,

it all looked so nice,

as the sun lowered in the sky,

and canal and house lights were turned on,

reflecting in the water,

looking back at one of the 4 large bridges that cross the canal,

we sailed past hotel,

after hotel,

with other water taxis coming towards us,

Diana was all smiles,

it was a dream come true,

for both of us,

it all looked so romantic,

there were several from our group with us,

another water taxi passes us going in the other direction,

the sun was now going down fast,

as we speed along,

a change of seating inside,

I just had to keep getting up to take pictures,

well we might not come back here again,

the lights were on now,

in all of the bars and restaurants,

it was surprisingly quiet, hardly a soul to be seen,

one super yacht stopping by,

and a water taxi race as the end of our journey was in sight,

for the technical the instruments,

all happy campers,

and we won!

Gustavo was as promised there to meet us,

we passed a tied up Riva,

as we made our way back to our room,

and decided after all of that walking,

a nightcap was needed,

so a sip for Diana,

a glass for myself,

a look at the bamboos and we were off to bed.

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