On To Venice

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Venice Sunset.jpg

We sadly said farewell to everyone in Sicily – there were gifts, tears, and promises or “prossima volta” (next time). Thank goodness for Facebook – many of us are amici (friends).

We decided to end our trip with a stay in Venice – to return to the place we got married. It just seemed right.

Well, we had a very LONG travel day. Returning the rental car (and explaining why we had traded in our Audi for an Opel), the crazy Catania airport, a plane change in Rome, and then landing with mind-boggling crowds at the Venice Airport.  Even the water taxis were all sold out, but thankfully I had booked ahead- whew.

Taxi Stand

Lesson Learned:   Next time, we will travel on a weekday.  Lots of Europeans on holiday.

For those of you who have been to Venice, the water taxi stop is not right outside the airport door. It is a 10-minute walk under a long and winding covered portico –packed with people trying to run you down and very hot in the June sun.  Frank always packs light – me, not so much (in my defense, I am the one packing the first aid kit, extra chargers, sunscreen, bug spray, and supplies that we invariably need).  In any event, Frank gave me a hard time about my luggage, so I was determined to carry it all myself.  But half-way through, I was struggling so he took over.  By the time we to tot the taxi, we were both drenched in sweat and grumbling to each other.

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But then – we got on the water and the magic happened. The Venetian Lagoon opened up before us and the memories came flooding back.  Remember that island?  Remember the day we did this?  Remember the gondola ride to the wedding?  We had made the perfect decision in returning.

Taxi - Lagoon.jpg

Alba D’Oro

We rented our same apartment, called Alba D’Oro, so it felt like we were coming home. It is a one bedroom with a galley kitchen and combination dining/living room right on the Grand Canal.  We could spend all day (and have) just watching the world go by.

Here’s our view:

View

Our neighborhood is San Polo, which is right by the fish market near the Rialto Bridge – the so-called “Left Bank” so a little more off-the-beaten path and local. We love it.

We have 3 weeks here so will settle in and become re-acquainted with the city where we became Mr. and Mrs. Volpe.

taxi - Grand Canal

Farewell Sicilia

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osteria

It is almost time to say good-bye to Sicily. We decided to take the Siracusan cousins to dinner and started planning.

Well, one thing led to another, and soon we had 15 people coming from all over Sicily to join in. We found a local restaurant to host us and all met for our last aperitivo at the apartment.

 

The restaurant had set a long table for all of us and brought out platter after platter of antipasti – at least 15 different kinds.

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Plus unlimited pitchers of wine.

Then the waiter told us what the choices were for the next round. The guests argued amongst themselves in Italian until they had decided on a few selections (Frank and I didn’t really know what was going on – I guess this is how it is done with group entrees!)

Last Night - Famiglia 2.jpg

But they chose well – we had plate after plate of pasta, including one of my favorites, seppie (pronounced sepp-ee-ah), which is pasta cooked in black squid ink. The only downside to seppie is that it turns your teeth black – and you better not spill any on your clothes.

Seppie.jpg

 

We ended with fruits and docli (sweets), plus sweet wine and grappa.

Our merry band finished the evening with a stroll to beautiful Piazza Duomo for one last farewell. Everyone was in high spirits – I looked down at my watch – almost 2 am.  We are living large in Sicilia!  We will miss this place.

Last Night - Duomo.jpg

Next Stop:  Venezia (where it all started)