Angela's – Week 5: La Settimana Cinque Category
Tuesday, February 28th, 2006
After a wonderful night of beauty sleep, we put our masks back on and headed out to Venice for another fantastic day. This time, we took a boat taxi around Venice to San Marco’s Square. The boat ride was about half an hour. It was so amazing!!
After we got to the San Marco’s area, we finally took a gondola ride after bargaining with several gondoliers. It was amazing!! So peaceful, beautiful, romantic, fascinating….I can’t wait to return and go agains someday.
After our lovely ride, we made it through the crowd to San Marco’s Square and found thousands of more people, tons of pigeons, and some really cool costumes.
After we were able to take it all in, we headed towards the train station (or so we thought) and stopped at a random restaurant for lunch, the pizza was great. We ended up getting lost in the Jewish ghetto, which is barely even on the map of Venice. Thanks to some kind old ladies, we were sent in the right direction and somehow ended up at the train station with time to spare. We ate these creme puff things that are famous in Venice during Carnevale and then boarded to train for the first peaceful train ride I’ve ever experienced. Venice was wonderful. There’s just some kind of magic about it. I’m defenitely planning on going back there again someday.
Tuesday, February 28th, 2006
We took a molto interesante night train to Venice late late late on Friday and arrived in Venice on Saturday morning.
We checked into our hotel. We stayed in a suburb of Venice that I am going to refer to as China Town. We walked around and checked out the plethora of Asain shops. We stopped at a Church and turned on a candle. After finally settling into our room, we got ready and took the bus to Venice to join the thousands of people. We walked around and looked at many beautiful costumes, shops, glass, and stands. We ate lunch at a random restuarant on some little narrow street. We all bought a Carnevale mask.We made it to the famous bridge that goes over the Grand Canal after spending hours in the biggest crowd of people I’ve ever been in.
We decided to go back to the hotel and rest up and had a picnic of Chinese carry out on our bed. We put our masks back on and went out to some plaza that had a live band, tons of bars and restaurants, and loads of people dressed up in crazy costumes.
We made it back to the hotel before the clock struck midnight and we turned into pumpkins. (sorry, I couldn’t help but throw in a Cinderella reference)
That concludes our first day in the best city ever!!
Wednesday, February 22nd, 2006
Today, Giuliangela took Alexandra and I on one of our traditional Wednesday outings. We intended to go to the Church Santa Maria della Vittoria to so see the infamous St. Teresa in Ecstasy. Unfortunately, the Church was closed for the time being. I’m sure I’ll make it back there some day though. I really want to see it because I’m reading “Angels and Demons” right now and some of the action takes place there. It is a great book to be reading right now because it takes place in Rome and in the Vatican. Hopefully, I will be able to visit all of the places mentioned in the book, although I doubt I’ll be able to make it to the Vatican’s Secret Archives.
Anyway, we ended up walking around a little bit and we went into an International Bookstore. There are books in several different languages there, so it was pretty cool. Next, we were going to go to another church, but we had to waste some time before it opened so we went to the Hard Rock Cafe just up the street. It was such a tease to see so much American food on the menu. I wanted all of it, but instead we settled for a brownie sundae.
After our step into the American culture, we emerged satisfied and then headed off to the crypt of the Cappucine Monks. It’s a really creepy and amazing place all at the same time. It’s kinda hard to explain and pictures weren’t allowed, but I’ll try to do it justice. The place is filled with artwork formed from the bones of the monks. The ceilings, walls…are all covered with these bones. There are also a few skeletons and a plaque that says something like, “We were once where you are and you will be what we are now.” It’s kind cryptic, but it kinda like saying dust to dust. Anyway, it was a really neat experience and I’m going to have to buy postcards so I can show everyone what it really looks like.
Later that night, we had a birthday party for all the girls in our program who have February birthdays and the theme was the Olympics!! Some girls rented out this club near our hotel and invited everyone in our program and in the Notre Dame program.
It was so much fun to dress up and be with all my friends!! There were so many cool costumes, great music and dancing, and lots of fun!!