I woke up to a lovely day and looked around the hotel grounds before going in for breakfast...
... then I headed out to the bus stop to catch a ride to Venice.
Once more I got off at Piazzale Roma to catch a waterbus. Today's first destination: Murano.
That morning, I was more observant and noticed things such as: Instead of trucks taking needed supplies or merchandise to hotels and shops in Venezia, there are supply boats...
Instead of more traditional ambulances, paramedics travel by boat.
Time to catch the waterbus. Two waterbuses go to Murano... the 41 and the 42. I knew it was important to take the one headed in the right direction otherwise, you go around the entire island of Venice BEFORE crossing over to Murano.
So... I asked some people waiting at the dock (in Italian, BTW - huge grin) which I should take. Answer: neither! The "DM" only stops at the Ferrovia before heading off for the island - huge timesaver! Moral of the story... learn Italian! (insert cheeky grin here)
So I hopped on the "DM" which stopped at the Ferrovia then turned down a side canal which led to open water and instead of puttering along, we boogied!
Along the way, I saw lots of very cool buildings...
... but without my impromptu guide (Giancarlo) from the afternoon before...
... I had no idea what I was seeing, only that they were interesting and/or beautiful.
Soon after passing this building...
... we were out in open water, speeding off to Murano.
Often the boat's wake was higher than the furrow the speeding boat creating as it carved through the water. In the background, the main island.
The ride across the open water was fairly quick. Here, we're passing the waterbus returning people to Venezia. On the left, Murano.
Anchored at the Murano Faro stop, a "pirate" ship!
The Murano Faro, faro being a beacon or lighthouse.
I got off at the Murano Museo stop because I wanted to go to the glass museum.
Things I loved: this door handle...
... this sculpture in the marble archway...
... and these weather-beaten shutters.
And then, of course, there was the beautiful glass!
So I went to the Museum of Glass which honestly was a huge disappointment. They were renovating and many of the rooms were shut.
I have next to no pictures because AFTER I took this one and the next, I found out you weren't allowed to and put my camera away.
There was one display which showed a bit of the history of glass. There were VERY old pieces dating back to 1 BC or so. That was kind of interesting. But most of the other things weren't even labelled so you had NO clue what you were looking at. Someone I met later that day asked about the Museum and I told them to save their money!
Now THIS was more interesting! This boat's lock (as in padlock to secure the boat from theft) had somehow slipped down the post and was actually making the boat list badly enough to sink. The man sitting was using his weight to prevent the boat from taking on water and the man standing on the boat was using a power saw to cut the lock. Once he cut through the thick cable, the lock sunk to the bottom of the water and the boat popped up to right itself so quickly that the guy with the saw almost fell.
On the trip back to the main island, I saw a bit more of Murano because the waterbus went down Murano's main canal.
There were several beautiful glass sculptures along the way. This was the only one I was close enough to take a snapshot of from the water. If I had my trip to Murano to do over again, I'd find somewhere where I could see someone working with glass (read factory tour or artisan's shop, etc.).
On the way back, the 41 stopped at St. Michele Island which is cemetary.
When I got off at Piazzale Roma, I promptly got back onto a #2 headed back down the Grand Canal.
Next destination: the Rialto Bridge and area.
This is what the Rialto Bridge looks like from the inside. There are MANY small shops on both sides of the stairs.
Many things are sold in these shops. For one, Carnival masks.
Beautiful, aren't they? I'd love to come back during carnival to see all the people wearing these gorgeous creations.
At the apex of the bridge, I walked to the edge to take this picture before looking at other stores having goods such as clothing, purses, and souvenirs... the usual touristy stuff...
... but you can't forget the glass, especially the jewelry made of it!
These glass beads were infused with sterling silver.
After crossing the Rialto Bridge (and spending more than a few Euro!), I decided to walk the streets back towards the Ferrovia. One of the first things I came across was this young girl and boy, him checking a map and her on the phone. I imagined this scenario: they're lost. He unsucessfully is insisting on figuring out where they are on the map. She's phoning their parents to send help. :)
One of the places I came across as I walked was a fruit market. Several stands had a terrific selection of fresh fruits, much of it grown in Italy but a few in other Mediterranean countries.
The fish market was closed by the time I arrived. They were hosing down the area but you could still smell the fresh fish.
As I walked along, there were times I was right on the Grand Canal...
... but more often than not, there were no sidewalks there and back streets and bridges had to be used.
I found the side canals much prettier and more interesting, just like a neighbourhood street is much prettier and more interesting than a main drag.
Ring-a-dingy one, ring-a-dingy two... THIS buzzer system is so much more elegant than what you'd find at home.
Keeping my head up for interesting sites.
Another neighbourhood street.
More Carnival flavour...
... and decoration.
This gives a new meaning to security bars in windows.
Take a peek at the two windows above the doorway.
Father and son.
I was surprised how few people I met up with on these back streets. The walk was so pretty! An experience you wouldn't want to miss!
I want one of these door handles!!! :)
Such a nice little neighbourhood! (The only thing that bothered me was the abundance of grafitti.)
Despite the wear and tear of salt water in the air, a charming facade.
I am standing on Ponte degli Scalzi with Gli Scalzi (Church of Santa Maria di Nazareth) in the background. Gli Scalzi translates to "the barefoot ones" referring to the barefooted monks.
A view from the bridge looking east (away from the Ferrovia).
When I got back to the hotel, this group of three had just arrived. They were going to be leaving the car and trailer and touring Italy, just as I was. I now forget their country of origin.

Below, the spot I got off the waterbus in Murano as well as the area I explored in Venice, travelling east to west.

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