Leaving Italy, on to Germany!

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St Marks Square in Venice
St Marks Square in Venice

We spent yesterday wrapping up our time in Venice and in Italy in whole for this trip. Most of this trip I keep saying we are trying to “live” in these cities and not be tourists, but in Italy we were tourists. The biggest reason is that we didn’t spend enough time in any of the cities to be anything more than be a tourist. In the end, it was an amazing part of our trip and I’m glad that we did it the way we did, because if we would have spent more time in Italy I would weigh about 300 lbs!

Doge's Palace ceiling
Doge’s Palace ceiling

We ate really, really well in Italy. We ate pasta, pizza, and had a wonderful fish meal, and we ate a lot of gelato. We saw all the main sites of Naples, Rome, Florence and Venice. We had really long walks and saw amazing feats of engineering completed 2,000 years ago. We saw one of the most amazing sunsets of my life in Florence and I got to drive in the Tuscany rolling hills. The last day in Venice was very special, with a visit to Doge’s Palace, some more pizza from Crazy Pizza and our last taste of gelato before heading to Munich.

View from the Bridge of Sighs
View from the Bridge of Sighs

Doge’s Palace was an amazing treat. My brother, Ken, told me that it was a must see. The rooms were pretty ornate with carvings, marble pillars and one room was more ornate and bigger than the last. We walked through the armory with all the old guns, spears, arrows, cannons and some other artillery. All of that was pretty cool. Then we walked across the Bridge of Sighs to the prison, which was also pretty cool. But the part that made my jaw drop was the final room that was the size of a football field that was for the government meetings. The room was just enormous and felt like you could literally play a game of football in it. We finished the tour and headed to the living quarters before getting pizza one last time. It was very good and everyone was happy.

Huge room at Doge's Palace
Huge room at Doge’s Palace

The entire trip has been one wonderful experience after another, and Italy was the one where I most felt like a tourist. For the rest of the trip we are staying in a number of places for a longer period of time, like 7 days in Budapest and Amsterdam, 10 days in Prague and Berlin. Our final stay in Paris will be 6 days and we already have new friends in many of these places. I’m looking forward to the extended stays, but I must say that our 3 and 4 day stays in Naples, Rome, Florence and Venice were pretty cool!

Tomorrow we are off to Dachau and the concentration camp tour. Drew has been wanting to go to that since before we left CA, and I know it will be a powerful experience. On Tuesday it will be a much lighter experience at the BMW Museum in Munich. We will have a quick stay in Munich but I’m sure it will be really nice.

To a life well lived …..

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