Venice, we hardly knew ye

subtitle: But wait, there's more!
or: the travelogue continues, quick run away!

We spent the last 2.5 days of our adventure in Venice.  We took the opportunity to teach our children about how to get a train ticket in Europe, how to read the big train departures board, and most importantly, the essential skill of dashing for the train at a full run with all of your luggage when you realize you are seated on the wrong car in the wrong seats and the train is about to depart.  All good life skills, right?

Our best look at Venice was the vaporetto ride from the train station to our hotel on our first afternoon there, which happened to be New Year's Eve.  The sun was in that magical part of the day--you know, that pre-sunset glow? We rode the Grand Canal, speechless and thankful.  We would look back later and be glad we got to see Venice that way.

And New Year's Eve? After a little exploring, some dinner, and some naps, we headed to San Marco's square for the festivities.  Very fun, that. {We were saying how funny it is that we have never gone to the Boston New Year's Eve we have to be on a trip to be fun people? Don't answer that.}  We'll never forget how it started to snow light fluffy flakes right before midnight.  Or the sight of a crowd full of people with sparklers.  Or how, as we grasped hands and snaked through the crowds after midnight, we somehow lost Maddy and watched her striped hat bob away from us (luckily some kind people around us helped us get her back to us).  Or how one random Italian guy tried (unsuccessfully) to kiss Lauren right after midnight and G pointed at him and said firmly "Don't. Touch. My daughter." Good papa bear response.

Our only full day in Venice, New Year's Day, was unfortunately slushy and rainy and a freezing, bone-chilling cold. We did our best with what we had to work with, though, making quick jaunts out and then back in for warmth.  

The next morning we caught a boat to the airport in the fog and 22 hours later arrived home in time for G to see the Utes beat Bama last night.  There really is no place like home, even if our roof did leak a little bit in our absence.  And my pants are fitting a leettle tightly.  And our cupboards (and bank account) are bare. Totally worth the trade off.  The end.  For now.