Just Another Day in the City of Masks


It was late on Friday night, our first night in Venice. We were all back at the campground. Everyone else was tired or asleep and it was only 8:30 p.m. But Mike and I were still up, still restless.

The power at the campground had just gone out and many people started filtering out of their rooms. Only we got hungry and so we set out on a quest to satisfy our hunger. First, we went left from the campground, walked nearly a mile and a half, and saw nothing but hotels and car dealerships.

Disappointed, we started back for Camping Rialto. That’s when our eyes lit up. From down site, we saw these illuminated signs and our gut instincts kicked in. We knew there was food down to the right. After walking for about six minutes, we came to this grill and pizzeria called Colors. They served pizza mostly. We each got a pizza, and they were huge! As big as they were delicious, in fact. For dessert, we got a nutella, banana, and sugar pizza. We were both in heaven at that moment. I don’t think I’ll ever forget this adventure. 

In college, we’re so focused on forging bonds and career opportunities that truly genuine moments can often get lost in the mail. I’ve come to realize that Mike has become one of my best friends in just a month. Every time we travel together, we make memories that will last a lifetime.

 * * *

When we got back to the campground the power was still out, so we began messing with one of our friends by knocking and scratching on the walls of the cabin. We entertained ourselves for maybe 15 minutes doing this. Each time, Dominic came running outside in his pajama pants – he was pretty freaked out but we weren’t done yet…

On Saturday, we took the rest of the group back to Colors for breakfast. Then we hit the city. We walked around for hours, visiting various churches, looking in shops and absorbing the Carnevale atmosphere. By the evening, we were ready to start enjoying Carnevale. We had masks, and were dressed the part.

Adrenaline kicked in and soon enough we were dancing and screaming as if we had been there before. Carnevale is a lot like Mardi Gras in the U.S. only it goes on for a lot longer and it’s very authentic. We screamed at the top of our lungs, ‘We’re in Venice!’ and ‘Carnevale! Carnevale! Carnevale! Carnevale!’

When we got back to the camp, we thought it would be funny to mess around with our friend, Dom, again. This time we got the rest of our group in on it. We shook and bashed on the front door, we scratched, clawed, and pounded on the walls of the cabin, too. We jumped onto the roof of his cabin shrieking and shaking about to see if we could get him going again.

This is another moment that I’ll remember forever. Its candid moments like this that make memories even stronger. Anyone can say they’ve been to Venice if they’ve gone, but not everyone can say they scared one of their friends into thinking Jason – hockey mask and all – was coming to kill him.

Our last day in Venezia consisted of a trip to the island of Murano, known for famously for its blown glass. We took a water taxi to the island because that’s the only way to get there. Its worth it, too. I mean it. There are blown glass shops offering enough blown glass to arm a hundred homes and a thousand people.

We walked maybe one mile to the center of the island and saw only glass shops and restaurants. We saw a worker in a glass factory actually blowing the glass and I thought it was interesting how the work is done. All the time and love put into each piece of glass is evident after watching this man work.

Definitely one of my most memorable trips. Nothing beats traveling with great friends to a beautiful place. I would take this trip again in a heartbeat and would travel with these friends every weekend if I could!

 

A couple other things to keep in mind if any readers ever plan on going to Venice:

–    Try the tapas
–    Order a Spritz along the water (a local specialty)
–    Try a bottle of Bellini

That’s all for now. Stay tuned for pictures and reaction from Paris, France coming later this week!

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