I spent hours on this Forum reading and reading. I read books and guide books. "Venice" by Jan Morris was one of the best books!
I read about vaporetto tickets and crowds of people and the pidgeons on San Marco. Where to eat and where to buy Prosecco.
But nothing, nothing prepared me for the first sight of Venice. When I walked out of the station and saw the Canal and the buildings, I laughed and jumped up and down like a young girl. It took me 56 years to visit Venice and a split second to fall in love.
We bought our 72 hour vaporetto tickets and my son got his Rolling card. Then we walked in bright sunshine to our apartment in Cannaregio. It was just behind Fondamenta de Cannaregio. I smiled all the way to the apartment.
The apartment was huge . We inspected the place and then went out for our first walk.
I was surprised by the amount of ladies dressed in mink coats. And all the dogs!
Found Billa, bought some supplies and wine and Prosecco and headed home .Sat outside on the balcony, eating, drinking and looking at the boats on the little canal.
The days became fluid. We walked miles and climbed thousands of stairs. Got lost a few times. Then found a nice square, drank a beer or two or some prosecco. Ate a pizza or two. We even had some gelato a few times.
Then later, when we couldn't walk any further, we would take the vaporetto home.
We walked the main drag, together with 1000's of other people. We sat at quiet Campo Santa Margherita. (My favourite.) Watching the people walking by, drinking another glass of wine, laughing at some children or dogs.
I spoke to children and owners of dogs.. In Cannaregio, a group of children where playing hide and seek and I helped a girl to block the boys. I helped her because she looked like I did at 10 years of age....black curly hair, a nose just that bit too long and a killer smile.
We walked the quiet squares of Cannaregio and met wonderful people. We got lost in Castello. We ate in expensive(for us) restaurants and we ate cheap pizzas. We had good food and we had not so good food.
We saw Venice in all her glory from the top of the Campanile. We walked slowly by Cafe Florian and peeked at the people inside.
We went to Burano and the Lido. The last one by mistake. We still enjoyed it.
We looked at the Opera House and never missed a church. It was peaceful and quiet and a place to rest my tired feet.
On NYE my son went to San Marco's Square and my husband and I sat on the balcony drinking prosecco. We even saw a few fireworks.
We even crossed the Canal by traghetto. It was fun.
I got quite good at crossing bridges and taking photographs in seconds.
And every evening we took the vaporetto home and then walk to the nearest restaurant for wine and food.
I love Venice with a new found passion.
I whispered goodbye, but I'll be back.