Italian Holiday – Part 3

Day 4 – Venice

We got up at some ungodly hour, it was still dark, not sure what time, 6am something. Not entirely sure, I though holidays were meant to be restful. Obviously not.

We had a breakfast of meats and cheeses, the salami was still brown around the edges, I assume it’s meant to be like this now. Though I still didn’t have any, can’t risk having a runny bottom here, everywhere you go they charge you for needing a toilet, supply and demand I guess. Well charge you for using a toilet, not needing a toilet, that would be one hell of a tax.

Mum and Dad couldn’t seem to wake up and were in a grumpy mood, as was I. I didn’t really think this morning, and went on the assumption that Venice would be really hot like last time we came here, it was 45 degrees then.  We went on the bus, none of us took any coat or cardigan, this was a big mistake because when we finally got to Venice, it was blowing a gale and freezing cold. Well not freezing, but cold, my nipples certainly knew about it.

These come alive at night and scream

These come alive at night and scream

The coach tour we are with are a mixed bunch, some ripe old birds up for ‘the crack’ and some right grumpy gits. We were all stood waiting to get the water taxi to the main bit of Venice, while being cold, a man with a fake teddyboy style wig and his friends went and sat on a wall, then when it was time for us to go into the water taxi, they didn’t see and stayed sat on this wall, this angered the normally cheery chubby driver, the other slim driver remained his usual miserable self.

We were on the water taxi and exposed to the elements. I’ve not been so cold in ages, Cecil was shivering and mum was actually cuddling up to him for body heat.

We got into Venice, we had paid an extra 25 Europe’s to go for a ride on the gondolas.  We had to go in a group with two other old woman. As it was very windy the first bit of the ride was rough as it was on the sea, the two old woman, and Mum did not take kindly to this. They were laughing, but it was a laugh of hysteria, but not a good hysteria, an hysteria of terror. Also when I got onto the gondola, the damn thing very nearly tipped over and put everyone in the sea. The woman screamed, and rightly so!

The gondola took us around the water ways of Venice, and water way to travel, it really is the only way to see the canals of this beautiful town/city. Though the captain? Driver? Pilot? Shouted at mum when she put her arm over the edge of the boat. He shouted in Italian, so we’ve no idea if it was a polite suggestion or a violent mafia style threat.

Parts of the canals smelled of poo.  It was nice though, not the poo smell, the canals. We then got off the boat, which almost tipped up again twice when I stood up and when I got off. The woman screamed!

There’s not much say about it really, we walked around for four hours, we got very lost (and a little grumpy), saw some sights, ate a dry salami sandwich and had an ice cream that was very nice. The only thing of slight interest was a very old woman, French, was pleading with my mum for something, my mum thought she was lost or tired, the old woman had a wrist strap on and a walking stick, I thought she might be a very old pick pocket so I watched her other arm/hand very carefully. She kept pleading with my mum in French but as I’ve said, the only thing my mum knows in French is “I can’t speak French” the old woman let her go. I still don’t know what she really wanted. Maybe she was an old kiss a gram.

Eventually it was time to get back on the water taxi, Venice is really nice, but busier than any other place I have ever been on earth, so many people of all races, creed, colours and smells.

Oh and we saw a man kick a pigeon and break its wing and leg, he did it right in front of the police who ran after him, it was very upsetting to see.

We then all waited by the jetty to get our river taxi back to the main land, we were in a big group and another big group of people were waiting for their taxi to our right.  Our driver told us all to walk through their group and get on our taxi, but when half of us had gone through this other group started to board their taxi, cutting off our path to our ferry. They slowed down and eventually stopped, trapping me and about 6 old ladies, the old woman in front of me asked someone from this other group if we could get through their group and re-join ours, but the grumpy old cow refused, thinking we were trying to get in front of them on to their taxi, so the old woman from our group, who was from Newcastle, elbowed at this other woman in the stomach and barged passed her. I was agog. Biddy on biddy violence. The other remaining biddies all started walking through the gap the violent woman had made, so I had no option but to go with them, lest be stuck in Venice forever.

We then sat on the taxi then the bus and I was desperate for a wee, it took me an hour to build up the courage to use the toilet on board the bus, but when I did, oh the relief and it was a wee of epic proportions!

We got back to our hotel, but the driver, who I might have mentioned is slim and really grumpy, was half asleep or something because the pillock drove passed the hotel, only by about 10 meters, but he slammed on the breaks and everyone shot forward, the chubby driver who wasn’t driving, got up and ran to the back of the bus because he thought someone had crashed into us due to the stupid slim drivers breaking method. Luckily no one had, the chubby driver was saying the f word under his breath all the way down the bus. They don’t get on very well I don’t think.

We had tea, it was fish, flounder I believe, nothing thrilling to report.

I’ve just spoken to my mum about last night, when I went for my before bed wee, I thought I had woken her up because she did wake up, and said I was a bastard and then she had to go do a wee and keep calling me names, but having just spoken to her, she has absolutely no recollection of this what so ever.

Day 5 – Verona

We got a bit of a sleep in this morning till 8am, which my body clock still thinks is 7am so I was very sleepy. We went to breakfast and the old couple we share the table with, who today is their 54th wedding anniversary, didn’t turn up, so I got to sit there quietly eating continental breads, cheeses and meats. It was very nice.

After breakfast we got on the coach and went to Verona, it was surprisingly lovely, we had been before and I found it boring and a bit frightening due to the high level of living statues. This time we decided to venture into the (apparently) 3000 year old arena, it was big, stone and full of tourists. Though I did manage to go for a free wee wee, though when I was coming out of the cubicle in the men’s toilet an old woman was waiting to go in, it was the men’s toilet, but she, like almost all the people I’ve seen on the continent, didn’t give a plop what people thought and just did whatever she wanted! Oh what a way to live, you get to do whatever you want, be rude, push in queues, drive at people, shout at people and the what not, we seem so polite compared.

I don't know who these people are!

I don’t know who these people are!

We then went round Verona, not much to say really, it’s nice, there were living statues, but they didn’t hassle me. We had lunch in a restaurant, more pasta, I’m a bit sick of pasta! We asked a man for the bill, he said yes, then never came back to us, we saw him serving loads of other people, so I being a bit too warm and wanting to go asked a waitress for the bill in quite an abrupt tone, and a bill was swiftly produced! Maybe this being rude thing is brushing off on me.

I could eat all that right now!

I could eat all that right now!

Then we got the bus back.

On the way to the hotel we stopped off at a duty free type shop, there was wine, foods and trinkets. Me and mum videoed the items on display, on our own separate camcorders, but as mum was videoing the grump young shop woman marched over to her and demanded she didn’t film in the shop. I don’t think she had spotted me. Why was she so angry about olive oil being filmed?! I’ll never know.  Mum got a bit embarrassed and walked away. We bought a few chocolates and booze, miniatures, nothing fancy, it’s just like shopping in an expensive Aldi or Lidl.

We got back to the hotel early and after we packed, I persuaded Mum and Dad to come for a walk, because I wanted to video and take pictures with my underwater camera, and we did go for a walk, I persuaded my Mum to go for a paddle, which she actually did. Then when she was trying to get back up the steep pebbly shore she fell over and couldn’t get up. She was on all fours for a minute, I was just laughing at her misfortune. She wasn’t hurt and finally she got herself up, it was an amusing sight.

Enjoy your trip?

Enjoy your trip?

I took some pictures and video and was convinced a tiny crab was crawling on my foot, though it was a phantom crab because the video clearly shows nothing at all anywhere near my foot.

We just waiting for tea now. I hope it’s not pasta based!

SHIT, MY PASSPORT!

Ugh I’d put my passport in my bloody main suitcase which had just been loaded onto the coach and locked away. I had to go down and find the driver and beg him to open the coach and let me get it out, luckily another woman, a middle aged woman travelling on her own had done the very same thing. I don’t know how she can travel on her own, she must be very empowered. Girl empower!

Tea was pasta based!

Day 6 – traveling home

The day started out like any other, dark, depressing and full of morning trumps. We got up, had the usual breakfast, but I was bold and ate the salami with the brown round the edges. It tasted fine! All this time I could have been eating it!

After breakfast we got on the coach and travelled many many hundreds of miles until we finally got to Metz where we were to stay over night. The hotel we quite posh but they weren’t providing us with any food so we had to go out and find some for ourselves.

Tempers were a bit frayed after being cooped up on a bus all day and we were all hungry and tired, we walked around a lovely garden then got into an argument about where to eat, we wandered around but couldn’t find anywhere with had either English menus or clearly labelled foods.  We’d had enough, there was a subway and we nearly ate there, but just couldn’t bring ourselves to. So we made our way back to the hotel, there was apparently a Chinese restaurant near, though why you’d have Chinese food in France is beyond me.  As it turns out we happened upon a French café in which we saw clearly written “Menu available in English” and we also saw some people from our coach eating steaks, so we went in. We were greeted by a very jolly Frenchman, he was very keen to constantly say ‘paella’ at us. He clearly didn’t speak a word of English, so obviously didn’t know what the word ‘menu’ meant. “Paella” he said again, we walked over to the English people and said hello and pointed to their steaks. Though one of them had some white meat and chips. After a confusing minute and more “paella” conversation he took us to a table and we waited for something, we weren’t exactly sure what. Some giant cola beverages were provided and then eventually, some white meat in a white sauce with salty French style fries. Mum was fairly sure it was veal, they seem to have that a lot over here, though we have lamb so depends how ethical you are as to how abhorrent this is to you.

The food was a welcome intake of energy and all our moods picked up once we had eaten, going on holiday is lovely but it’s very tiring and can lead to frayed nerves and cause tension, we always seem to argue on holiday, I bet that’s quite common though.

We went back to the hotel and slept like babies, in that half way through the night we all pooed ourselves and cried uncontrollably. A tee hee, that’s one of those jokes I’ve heard so much about! We slept very well, save for I woke up as I was just about to roll out of bed, luckily my monkey reflexes kicked in.

Day 7 – To England

We had the most delicious breakfast of the whole holiday, I had

  • Salami meats – 6 slices
  • Weird, yet delicious Ham – 3 slices
  • French bread – half a ‘baton’
  • Individual cheese – 3
  • Croissant – 2 filled with nuttella
  • fruit juice – 2 full glasses
  • sponge biscuit things – 4

That’s not a joke for comic effect, it was all so delicious I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to stuff my face, and it was free so thought I’d best make the most of it, who knows if I’ll ever come back again.

We then sat on the bus for hours till we go to the ferry, as it was Saturday it was very busy. When we got off the bus, we tried to walk around the back of the bus to where the stairs were on the ferry to the upper decks, but there was an open door of another coach blocking the path, about four of us were looking for a way passed when the driver of the coach came storming out and started swearing and threatening to attack the man who was on our coach, all he was doing was looking for a way through, the driver was a huge guy both in height and weight, I just stood there agog, watching, mum was pushing me to move away but I thought it best to make sure this guy from our coach was ok, luckily his wife dragged him away and we all went the other way.  The evil driver was English, so much for us being incredibly polite, we hadn’t said or done anything to warrant such a reaction.  I tried to see which bus company he was with but never managed to.  I speculated he had done something bad and was facing the sack so he didn’t care anymore. The fat tall idiot.

The ferry was very busy, we just sat, depressed that the holiday was over and ate fish and chips.

Eventually we got into England and began to make our way home, we stopped off at some services and there were two opposing football team supporters in the services, there was an obligatory hooligan based punch up and in the end 8 police cars turned up.

We eventually got back onto another feeder coach and made our long way home, my body ached and I was very tired, but it was a wonderful holiday, thank you Mum and Cecil for making it a wondrous time!

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