Leg 2 of my recent holiday travels. I swore on Twitter, (and was therefore bound by law), that I would step off the coach in Verona and flamboyantly declare ‘IN FAIR VERONA, WHERE WE LAY OUR SCENE’, but I have to confess that after 16 hours of traveling from Paris I was more disorientated than expected so this did not happen. We dropped our bags off at our airbnb apartment, had showers and cat naps then headed into the city. Initially we couldn’t find the centre and were worried that it would all be closed anyway due to it being a Sunday, fortunately, this led us to a pizza shop that gave us free pizza! Not traditional thin base, wood oven cooked pizza but a. beggars can’t be choosers and b. FREE STUFF. With pizza off the tick list we stopped for a coffee and GELATO when we found the busier part of the city, then headed over to Castelvecchio, which had some great views over the Adige river. I found myself competing with some kids to get to the best climbing spots on the castle walls and bridge but don’t you worry, I won. (Take that small children.)
We accidentally found our way to ‘Juliet’s house’ (Casa di Giulietta), which people seem to associate with Shakespeare’s Juliet, even though it is highly unlikely she was even mildly real. (Ever the pessimist.) Plus, Google has just informed me that the infamous balcony I took a photo of was only added to the house in the 20th century. (Disappointment.) Regardless, it was funny and a little bit weird to see tourist couples trying to pose as Romeo and Juliet on the balcony while hundreds of strangers took photos of them… We wandered sort of aimlessly for the rest of the day but went full circle back to the old Arena before the sun went down. I was the only one feeling flash enough to pay the 5 euros to get into the Arena. It was set up for a concert so it didn’t have quite the archaic feel I was hoping for! Still, the views over the city made up for it.
And then, VENICE. I was initially a little disappointed by Venice, maybe because it’s always so talked up? But after lowering my standards a little, and accepting the excessive tourism and all the disheveled buildings for what they were, I started to enjoy the labyrinth of tiny streets and quaint bridges that led you over the endless canals. More gelato was found and destroyed of course, two chubby cats, curled up in a suitcase of old maps, were also found (but definitely not destroyed…) and the hunt for the perfect Venetian mask (for future fancy dress) went well. It would’ve been lovely to see the city from the water, or even to explore some of the smaller surrounding islands, but the day went by so fast, and jeeeeeeez are those gondolas expensive.
Also is it wrong that I was highly amused by these letterbox/doorbell faces?