It looks like it was a good day to leave Rome. It rained quite a bit last night and the sky was still quite dark as I left, so there is probably more rain on the way - a big change from the hot sunny days I experienced.
I went straight to the train station after I had breakfast and checked out of my room. I was in no rush as my train didn't leave until late in the morning. This gave me a chance to arrange a train from Venice to Vienna (a different ticket window than yesterday because it is an international route). I met a girl from Victoria, BC, while waiting in line at the ticket window. She was on a 4 month trip and spent most of the last 3 months in the Middle East. For her it was refreshing to get to Greece and Italy, where there are plenty of North American tourists. Hardly anyone spoke English in the Middle East.
Booking my overnight train to Vienna was going fine right up until the guy charged the reservation to my credit card. He messed up with the decimal place and charged my card 10 times more than he should have. He noticed the problem right away, but it wasn't so easy to fix. Their machines don't allow them to give credits. After a bit of a delay a couple of his supervisors came to help resolve the situation. They explained the problem in which their machines are not setup to give back credits. They did say there was a slight chance they will be able to get the charge reversed, but it would take time, they also suggested that they could just give me cash right away instead. At first getting cash didn't sound good me, but it was starting to get late and I realized that would save me a few bucks in cash withdrawal fees so we went with that option.
The train to Venice had nice comfortable seats, although the track was a bit bumpy in places. The trains have been getting progressively faster since I left Spain. I think when I left Spain the fastest speed was about 160kph, then going to Rome we got up to about 180. On the way to Venice we had a few good stretches of over 250kph.
It was nice to arrive in Venice knowing I already had a hotel room waiting and all I had to do was find it! The navigational aides in my GPS device took me down a couple dead end streets, but I did find the place without too much wasted time.
I believe back in Toledo I mentioned that the place was like a giant maze. Well, the giant maze in Toledo was just child's play compared to Venice. In Toledo if you took a wrong turn you just ended up going around in circles or taking a slightly longer route to your destination. Here if you take a wrong turn you can go a long way only to run into a dead end. Fortunately, after you are here for just a short period of time it's not too hard to navigate even with the simple free map provided by the hotel.
After getting settle in at the hotel I spent the rest of the day wandering around Venice. It was a bit nicer for that after dinner because many of the tourists were gone and the streets where much quieter. However, it seemed as it got later and the wind and water traffic went down you could start to smell some unpleasant scents from the canals.
Here are a few shots of scenery from Rome to Venice. It was quite hilly as we crossed Italy from West to East (actually quite steep in some places) then as we got closer to Venice it flattened out like the prairies around Regina.
Here we are on the bridge from the mainland heading towards Venice.
The remaining photos are scenes in Venice.
An interesting guitar.
La Salute Church.
If you want to spend money, a whole bunch of it, on stuff you really don't need, this is the place to come. The area if full of shops selling all kinds of things from simple stuff shown below to very expensive art, jewelry, and designer clothing.
St. Mark's Basilica and the Campanile bell tower at the end of St. Mark's Square.
There are many interesting and artistic scenes after dark.
It sure is nice to be in Venice were there are no cars and scooters!