17 April 2005
Firenze to Venezia
Spent the morning in Florence walking around with Cynthia and looking at some of the famous buildings. Saw Santa Maria Novella, which was filled with beautiful art_the famous artist Michaelangelo is buried there. Then, went inside the Duomo, which is a really large cathedral with a huge dome. It was the first of it's kind and an engineering marvel. Also saw Ospedale, by Bernini, which is a building that marks the beginning of the Renaissance period of architecture. Train ride from Florence to Venice was beautiful! Was really interesting between Bologna and Venice, because the landscape looked like western Kansas! Very flat farm fields with grain silos and barns. Weather turned from sunny in Florence to overcast to rainy in Venice. Arrived in Venice, took water taxi to side of island that our hotel was on. Don navigated the narrow little streets to find our hotel. The room was so small, I guess like most hotels in Venice. There was room for 2 twin beds, 2 feet on each side, an armoir, and the door. The bathroom was more like a camper bathroom, as it was only 3 feet wide, max. It was very cozy and cute. Ate at a little family restaurant recommended in my guide book. Food was amazing! We were the only English speakers in the restaurant, which was our first clue that it would be good. Had salad, canneloni stuffed with ricotta cheese and asparagus, and fried calimari, cuttlefish and prawns. Plus the house red wine and tiramisu for dessert. Now before, I was not fond of asparagus or calimari, mostly because I had never had any that was good. However, the asparagus was full of flavor, and the calimari wasn't rubbery at all and was also quite tasty! So delicious! Walked back to hotel over the Rialto bridge, and heard a man playing his guitar [actually, I think you call it a lyre or something, but it was pretty].