Having gone to bed near 2am after several bottles of Tom’s exceptional Euro-Find-Wines finds we found ourselves oversleeping a bit. We woke in time to pack ourselves up, catch a quick breakfast with Tom and Heather, grab a few last minute electrons, and reach the Spoleto train station in time. We boarded the train, releaved to make the train but worried our ticket wouldn’t be accepted as it had already been time stamped and punched the day before. But I had time stamped the wrong side of the ticket and the hole punch had a hanging chad. I licked, positioned and squeeze that chad back into its hole as best I could and validate the proper side fot he ticket. Wringing my hands about what to tell a potentially non-English speaking conductor if we were caught I decided honesty was the best policy. As the conductor came down the isle I thought to myself, “Calmé” and handed him our tickets and started to explain the discrepancies, “…Yesterday…we, uh”. But he took the ticket, punched it clear thru, handed it back to me before I could form a sentence and said “Tiburtina is the next stop” and he went on to the next set of passengers, two young Japanese women whom where sitting in first class with a second class ticket. He made them pay a fine (and purchase a first class ticket) on the spot, 60 Euros. Ouch. Calmé.
Our next stress came from having only 20 minutes in Tiburtina to find the Frecciargento TrenItalia high speed train to Venezia. We hustled ourselves off the regional train and schlepped our luggage up the escalator of Platform 6 and into the station to find a schedule board so we could find our next platform. The train to Venezia was leaving from platform 6. We schlepped ourselves back platform 6, found the space for our car and waited for the train to arrive. Calmé…
The train showed up on time and we slipped into the very stylish and modern first class seats. No sooner did the train leave the station than a beverage cart came along and offered us a complimentary glass of prosecco! Grazie! It was calmé all the way to Venice.
On the train I called the Boscolo Hotel to find the best way to the hotel from the station. “You can take the #4.2 or #5.2 Vaporetto (the public boat) for 7 Euro each and get off at the Orto stop and its a short 5 minute walk, or you can hire a private taxi speed boat for abou 70 Euro.”We made our way to the vaporetto stop, bought 24 hour tickets (so we could take it down the Grand Canal tomorrow), and hopped on the 4.2. It was twilight and Venice was beautiful from the boat.
The Boscolo greeted us with Murano glass chandelliers, and a complementary room upgrade to a junior suite! Clara got her own room up the stairs from us. To top things off, just after our bags arrived so did two glasses of wine and two martini glasses filled with gelato.
Tired from our 5.5 hour train trip we wanted something simple for dinner. The hotel recommended Pizzeria Visuvius so we walked there for a quick bite before wandering the back canal streets and tourist traps along the main streets and piazzas.