Venice, Day 3 Italy

The breakfast in the room consisted of coffee, for which we requested cappuccinos, orange juice, two croissants with a dollop of apricot pur←e baked inside, a pleasant surprise, and two rolls. I have to say that, even though we had some fancier breakfasts at some other places on our trip, no croissants were as flaky and delicate as the ones in this locanda.

We took a walking tour of Venice with Venice Walks and Tours meeting close to San Marcos Square. We signed in for the tour and I noticed a lady kindly smiling at me. I smiled back and the husband came up and said, “Hi, Bill!” It was Tom Crozier, a chemical engineer from Camas, with whom Bill has worked! They were so nice and we instantly became walking companions with them. The walking tour was excellent. Lots of history, interesting cultural tidbits past and present, and sites.

We went through St. Mark’s Basilica which was built in the 11th century. It looks Eastern with rounded mosque-like domes to emphasize its connection with Byzantium. This church has a rich, intricate Italian tile-patterned floor and wall to ceiling tiny mosaics. The ceiling actually reflects and glitters with gold mosaics.

The tour walked up to the Rialto Bridge area where, after a few hours, it ended. We crossed the bridge and the four of us found a warm and cozy place for lunch. It was my introduction to zuppe de verdure, vegetable soup done Italian, and it became a favorite throughout the trip. Bill loved his anchovy pizza. We greatly enjoyed visiting with the Croziers and took vaporetto #82 (a water bus) down the Grand Canal, back to the Accademia Bridge with them.

For dinner, the four of us chose a restaurant close to Campo San Stefano because we had purchased tickets to an evening concert in that area. It was called Ristorante La Feluca and our dinners were outstanding.

And then we were on to Vivaldi’s “Le Quattro Stagioni,” (The Four Seasons), in Chiese San Vidal (San Vidal Church) done by an extremely talented and moving string group, young, probably mid-30’s. The atmosphere and the talent and gusto of these musicians really brought us into the music. The piece that really, really moved me was the very last one, not a Vivaldi. It was Tommaso Vitali’s “Ciaccona” per violino e archi. I really do think that if this were played anywhere there was conflict, that people would not want to fight! It made you fall in love with everything!

What a wonderful and very full first day in Venice!

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