May 06, 2009
Jun 30, 2009
. We then sat in Piazza San Marco and ate our gelato while listening to the grand orchestras playing Italian operetti. We had pizza, pasta, and calamari for lunch and headed back to the streets. Paul found a local shop (which looked like a cantina), and curiosity got the best of him. Inside there were more than twenty damigians of red and white homemade wine. We had to try both red and white. The proprietor filled them in 1.5 litre water bottles, which made drinking in public that much easier! From St.Mark's church, we saw the palace of Il Doge (the Duke of Venice-whose summer home is in Codroipo- Paul's father's birthplace). After 8 hours of walking, we took the Vaparetto (water bus) back to the station, and headed back to Codroipo. On the train, we went to work on the wine and Paul smoked on the train, pulling his usual disobedient drunk bullshit. We thought our cover was blown when two Carabinieri (policemen) walked into our traincar. Thankfully, they were just taking a ride, and were not interested in sniffing our water bottles. Paul and I got into an argument. It turns out he was right (he's dictating this all to me right now, so as you all know, that is't true)! For dinner, we ate gnocchi and pizza at Alibaba's, then stumbled home. Bedtime at the Pagotto residence!!
We took the early morning train from Codroipo to Venice on Monday. Walking out of the train station and into the city we were immediately greeted by the droves of people and the gondolas paddling along the Grand Canal. Against conventional wisdom, we made a sharp left and headed away from the crowd and into the Venice of the people. We allowed ourselves to get lost amongst the 400 bridges and 2,000 alleys that comprise the island. Venice is free of cars, as the Venetians use water buses and gondolas to get to and from work. The city was born in a lagoon 1,500 years ago, when the Northern Italians escaped the barbaric invasion of Atilla the Hun and left Aquilea in seacrh of refuge. Venice is much like Sofia Loren: old, beautiful and sexy. We eventually hooked back up to the streets along the gand canal, and shuffled along the tiny "calle," (very narrow streets), which are lined with shop after shop, after restaurant, after gelateria. We saw Rialto bridge and market square, and crossed the grand canal by gondola via traghetto