|This morning we traveled to Venice and before we left we walked down in the area of the Duomo once more. The crane with the scaffolding was still high in the air and its load still hanging above the street, but it would seem that they now decided it wasn't such an emergency anymore and the streets were no longer blocked off and not a carbinieri in sight.......go figure. We made our way to the train station and caught our train to Venice and while enroute a family from Chicago came trudging down the aisle....they too had been subjected to getting on the train at the wrong end as we had done in Bayonne and had to make their way all the way from one end of the train to the other with their bags in tow.....not an easy task. We struck up a conversation with Debbie and her daughter's Margaret and Catherine and Debbie's sister, Denise and chatted all the way to Venice. Once again it was nice to have someone to speak English with on our journey and it made the trip go by so much more quickly and pleasantly. We traded email addresses and hope to keep in touch with our new friends........We arrived in Venice and made our way to our room at "Ca' Doge" walking along the Grande Canal on our way and upon our arrival were surprised with the information that our online reservation had been cancelled. We weren't sure why it got cancelled, but the lady at the desk helped us to find another room near by and we made our way back closer to the train station to "Antiche Figure". After we got settled we headed out into the alleys of Venice on foot making our way over the numerous bridges which cross the canals. There are 400 bridges in Venice, soon to be 401 as they are currently constructing a new one which is to be opened soon. We made our way to Piazza San Marco and it too is quite a sight. There were hundreds of people milling about enjoying the afternoon and even more pigeons......the kids and dogs were chasing the pigeons while other people were feeding them right out of their hands. A couple of the restaurants in the square had orchestras playing music and it was a very enjoyable way to spend time in Piazza San Marco. Later in the evening we headed back to Santa Lucia train station to make reservations to Verona. We were standing in line behind some college students and they seemed to be quite distressed and we asked them where they were headed. They told us that they were trying to get to Paris the next night and continue on to London to get their flights home on August 12 since the two girls, Christine and Michelle, had to back at school on August 13 or 14. We asked them why it was so important that they be back on time and the girls were reluctant to tell us that they went to school at Westpoint, the military academy. We thought that was awesome. In any event they still had no success in getting a train reservation and since their only other alternative seemed to be flying out of Venice, we invited them back to our room to use the internet to make their connections. We hope that they get home O.K. One other coincidental thing......Christine was on a training exchange with the British Army and in June when it was really hot, they were on a training mission in Canada, in Wainwright no less. Christine told us that they had a couple of days of R & R so they came to Edmonton and visited West Edmonton Mall. It's funny how you meet with some people who have some sort of connection to home......