My Italy trip - Day 5

Asha Desh By Asha Desh, 14th Jan 2017 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Travel>Europe>Italy>Venice & The Veneto

My trip to Italy. A close experience with history I had heretofore observed just in picture collections and motion pictures. The landmarks, culture, scenery and food from the immense Colosseum to the spread of Olive trees-that blow one's mind!
And now we see the narrow streets and waterways in Venice.

Leaning Tower of Pisa

We left Montecatini after breakfast. Our first stop was Pisa. There I was, standing in front of the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa, a 200 foot tall marble structure, the color of white alabaster. Something that I had read about for years, had yearned to see, was right in front of my eyes! As I gazed upon it, “there flashed upon my inward eye” (with due apologies to Wordsworth), my 8th grade physics classroom. The physics text book, lying open, with a picture of the leaning Tower of Pisa, as an illustration by Galileo for the theory of Equilibrium and Gravity. How the mind does fly! Within seconds, my mind had travelled through boundaries of time and space with distinct clarity. We spent a lot of time there and took lots of pictures. There were a lot of tourists like us. All were trying to act like they were pushing the tower to straighten it up. Millions of pictures, thousands of people, young and old, with the gall to picture themselves in this act of stupidity, ourselves included. The philosophical side of my mind wondered what the tower would say if it could speak? Something on the lines of human ego and stupidity being as legendary as the structure of the Leaning tower of Pisa.! And to think, that it is all due to an architectural mistake.
The Leaning Tower of Pisa, is actually a part of buildings in the same area, called the “Field of Miracles”. It includes the Pisa’s Baptistery, Duomo Museum, Camposanto cemetery, and Museum of the Sinopias. In fact the tower was built as a bell tower to complement the cathedral. But the architectural error of the tower stole the fame from the other buildings around it!

Venice

From Pisa we left for Venice, after stopping for lunch. The entrance to Venice is enticing. It is a normal automobile route, with cars and trucks, and all of a sudden, the lagoon comes into view! And what an indescribable view it is! If Pisa started my heart racing, Venice made it skip a few beats! I was in Venice, the city that I had read about in my geography and history books, as a city built on water. We took a private taxi to our hotel. Our entire luggage, (Yes, 43 x 2 pieces of luggage) came on another water taxi. Everything in Venice has to be transported via water route, which is why things are so expensive there. Our tour director had a special talent of making anyone she was speaking to as if they were most special to her. She was talking to me about the crowds in Venice as we walked on the banks together. I told her that being originally from India that did not bother me, and we chit chatted a bit. We were welcomed with an evening snack and champagne. Out hotel was situated on the water (of course) but it was actually on the Grand Canal. We asked if we could have a room with a view of the Grand Canal. Sure, we were told, for an extra hundred euros per night. We quickly changed our minds about that and decided we could just come down a flight of stairs for the view! We rested for some time and got ready for the evening.
Everyone was excited and spruced up for the Gondola ride. I felt chic in my new black and white striped designer T shirt – until I walked down to the Gondola pier and saw the Gondoliers. They were all dressed in similar T shirts, which was their uniform! Well, story of my life! Before the Gondola ride, however, there was a small mishap. There was a lot of buzz and laughter around and in the midst of it all, our camera was dropped and broke. We were both upset, but did not let that deter us from enjoying the beautiful Gondola ride. We were in Venice, in a Gondola, being serenaded by a Gondola singer, and the evening was beautiful. Things fell into perspective, besides we had another digital camera as well. The half an hour Gondola ride is an evening to always remember.
After the Gondola ride, some of the tour members went on an optional dinner cruise, which most of us declined. We walked around a bit, did some window shopping and admired the evening and night view of Venice by the Grand Canal. We had pizza in a Pizzeria run by a family for decades. Then we had some gelatos. Having gelatos' in every flavor seems to be our mission for the evenings!

Tags

Europe, Italy, Pisa, Travel, Venice

Meet the author

author avatar Asha Desh
Freelance writer. My genre is a mixed bag . My articles include Reflections on life, Humor with meaningful messages, Travel, Light reading and Fiction.

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