I can write about this now... two weeks later.
On the last day in Venice. We planned to check out of our Venice hotel to a hotel just minutes away from Marco Polo Airport. It wasn't the distance but having to ride the water taxi or the vaporetto to the bus station to get to the airport by 6 a.m. was a daunting task. I did all the research and decided the best thing to do was to just check into a local hotel near the airport with a shuttle service. I memorized the number of the bus that we would take, fchecked on my iphone one last time, I took a quick picture of my hotel's address and checked out of our beautiful Regina Europa Westin Hotel in Venice. To this point, I did all the reservations, bookings, planning, itineraries and "so far so good" was the case.
We thought it would be a great idea to check in to our smaller hotel near the airport, and return back to Venice for our last romantic dinner out! We even talked about possibly going to see a Vivaldi concert in town. It all sounded like a perfect ending to our perfect vacation in Italy.
However, when I approached the driver with my phone with the address of the hotel, he shook his head and said "I DON'T go there. Only to the airporto!" Okay.. I thought it was strange but at least we would get off at the airport. We got off and while ENK stood there puzzled, I ran to another bus assistant to ask which bus to catch to get to our hotel. ENK insisted that we go into the airport and call the hotel... but without hesitation, I followed the Italian helpers who said we needed to get on this bus now! They asked us to pay 7 EUROS each to get on the bus and we reluctantly got inside. There were several things wrong with this scene.
1. 7 EUROS? We paid only 2 to get to the airport.
2. They got our luggage and placed it on the bottom of the bus.
3. There were many German tourist on the bus who were very quiet.
4. The bus was so full, we couldn't even sit down together!
ENK was giving me strange looks. I was getting nervous. I asked one local person who was near by... showed the address of our hotel and she said this was the RIGHT bus!!! ENK was still giving me looks and said we are going too far! After more than 45 minutes, we arrived at this bus terminal. We immediately went to the window and asked if this was indeed the right place. The terminal helper said yes. Infact, he said that we just need to take the next bus and tell the driver you were going to Hotel Anthony and he will help you get off. We asked the young man if we could use the phone to call our hotel. He insisted that the bus driver will help us. ENK was saying, "how the ***would the bus driver know?" But he did.
We took the bus, got off the side of the road and walked a block to our hotel. There were several thing wrong with the scene.
1. There were people in bikinis and swimming suits.
2. The stores looked different. This was a destination resort of some sort. They were selling souvinirs and sun tan lotions!
3. There were TONS of hotels... rows of hotels. When I was booking the hotel near the Marco Polo airport, there were maybe five choices?
We finally arrived at our hotel along the seashore. We were greeted with a big smile... However, when I said my name, they COULD NOT locate our reservation. I said is this Anthony Hotel? They said YES. Then the front desk lady said that there were TWO hotels with the same name. Same name but different website: anthonyhotel.it and hotelanthony.it ! WHAT??? She said "You're not the first one to make this error!"
I was exhausted. ENK already walked out. I was feeling desperate to get near the airport. I asked if we can take a taxi to Marco Polo. She said it would be very expensive... 100 Euros or more she said! She told us to take the local bus back to the terminal and take the shuttle bus to the airport.
ENK was cursing at this time. There were no airplanes around... just unattractive Europeans in bathing suits,. I was not amused. We finally made it back to the terminal. The man at the ticketing counter recognized us and asked why we came back? Knowing out frustration, he refunded our bus ticket and informed us of the bus we needed to wait for. Another 45 minutes for the last bus of the night. It was getting dark and I noticed slow gathering of men from Nigeria or somewhere with big bags..being very loud near the ladies room ...I was too scared to go the bathroom. I sheepishly asked my husband to walk to the bathroom with me. He did... but I did not make eye contact with ENK. The terminal assistant person took pity on me and bought me a bottle of water.
In the darkness, we rode the same bus back to Marco Polo and then to our stop. Four hours later, in the middle of the night we arrived at our hotel. We were barely able to walk the final cobblestone road over to our hotel. We checked into our hotel in silence. Too tired to go eat and too upset to talk about the night. Strangely as if they knew... they gave us two single beds. Yes, it's typical in Italy but up to this point, we were given nice King beds. We were able to conveniently get up and take our shuttle safely to Marco Polo early the next morning just five minutes away.
But I just had this big looming question. Where the heck did we go the day before? I went into the website of the wrong hotel and got the address of a resort hotel instead of the airport hotel! How careless...yet looking at the address made no sense to me nor did it alert me that it was in another city! Why didn't I listen to my husband to get help at the airport? Many oops... We should have just turn around at the terminal... But then I wouldn't have this story to write?
In looking at the map, we were at this long strip of island off of Venice. Not quite half way to Slovenia... but I would like to just think our adventure led us at least that far!
All in all.. even this misfortune could have been worse... A friend just returned from Italy said that they missed their train and had to buy brand new tickets which made the husband very upset. My brother Josh said that a friend's backpack with hert passport was stolen from Venice train station back when they were in school. ENK experienced a gypsie woman trying to pick his shorts pocket on the first day we got on the train in Rome. He instinctively slapped her hand and held his wallet tight. Great lesson to learn on the first day...
We had a wonderful trip. We still talk about it. We talk about going back. I am able to write about this now because ENK said EVEN this experience was memorable for him. :) He keeps asking me to show him the map!
This is a description of where we were: Lido di Jesolo
This is a seaside resort built in the thirties between the mouth of the Piave and the mouth of the Sile at the most easterly point of the Venice lagoon. Its climate and long sandy beach have made it a holiday destination for large numbers of foreign tourists. On the west side of the coastline there is a spa (Stabilimento Termale Elioterapico) which gives sea-water treatment