Sunday, May 2, 2010

Venice Let Me Down

Just returned from trip to Rome, Venice, many areas of Switzerland ending in Zurich for five days. Total trip over three weeks. I expected Rome to be noisy and polluted and it was. The motorcycles of all sizes were horrible, so loud and intrusive. The antiquities we saw were awesome, of course, but many things were closed and under repair and others had waiting lists, long lines, and the Sistine Chapel, well, there was a six day wait to even get on a list. We passed. The food was fab, of course, hideously expensive, service ok but touristy. But Venice...well, my romantic ideas vanished with the first boat taking us to the Grand Canal area. Pushing, shoving, rude people everywhere fighting for a seat, elbows dangerously close to my eyes, pickpocket paradise. Vendors hawking wares all over the canal front. Prices in the cafes unbelievable. One ice cream shop wanted 16 Euros for two scoops of ice cream in a cup. We walked out. A cup of espresso was 8 Euros. Of course, this is in the most pricey parts of the Grand Canal. The second day, we left the waterfront alone, wandering cobblestone streets to the interior where there are neighborhoods with tiny delis reminding us of New York. Romantic? no. I suggest visiting elsewhere rather than have your romantic dream of eternal Venice trashed.

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