Saturday, October 8, 2011

Arrived in Zelarino, Italy

Anyone who bet that I would get lost - wins. I did fine until I got on the bus in front of the Mestre Train station. They have a new kind of bus ticket; instead of stamping it like you do at the train station, you hold it in front of a little machine and it reads the bar code. I of course first tried to stamp it and quickly saw that the ticket wouldn't fit in the hole. Finally I figured it out.

When I was on the train, I sat next to a very nice woman who spoke English and is in the travel industry. She lives in Rome and her company is a USA company. She was telling me that there are more tourists in Venice than residents and some of the residents are getting tired of all of the tourists. She said that I will need to speak Italian where I am going. And that was so true!

Back to the bus - I got on the bus and saw that it was the right number and went to Zelarino. I kept watching the bus stops and finally went to the bus driver who didn't speak any English to find out where Zelarino was. "Que" which is "here". So I realized that Zelarino was a city or suburb of Mestre not a stop. I kept trying to see the Polo Grocery Store or the Bar and finally I got up when I saw the bar. Obviously, the bus didn't stop. I think it only stops when someone pushes the "stop" button. I tried to tell the driver that I missed my stop and he either didn't understand or pretended to not understand. I got off at the next stop. We walked back about 1 1/2 miles to the Bar where I was supposed to walk an additional 1 KM to the house. One hour later, sweating, swearing under my breath and mad at Seymour for stopping at every tree along the way, I saw some kids throwing rocks at some barking dogs. I gave them the "look" and said "no" and kept walking. They followed me - knowing that I was walking up a dead end street. They weren't malicious kids, so I wasn't worried. But after giving them the "look", I now had to ask directions. Luckily an older girl was with them and pointed the way.

It turns out that I made a wrong turn (surprise)so tonight I walked to the bus stop following the owner's map and it took 20 minutes. That isn't bad. I also looked around so I could see some landmarks to let me know when I need to push that STOP button on the bus.

I almost decided not to stay when I did find the house/farm - I am the only one here in a room with 4 beds. It is really off the beaten path and not very convenient to Venice and other places - but the people are very nice. The wife speaks very little English so she needed to bring her husband in to answer my questions. Seriously, I think I'm speaking the right words, but the questioning looks I get say otherwise.

The man took me to the grocery store where the owner made me a sandwich on crusty bread with ham. I came back and poured olive oil on it. I also bought the first bag of potato chips I've had since I've been in Italy. They are a bit greasy but met my needs.

The owners have 2 dogs, one little long haired dog that doesn't like anyone and then a hound dog mix named Rudy that is really sweet. Seymour had to do his Alpha thing with both the dogs. I usually pull him away but I probably should let them chomp him a few times to show who is really boss!

I haven't asked the owners about their garden yet. It looks like they also grow a lot of grapes so I'll be curious if they make their own wine.

I will take pictures tomorrow. The nice thing is that I do have a large bedroom with a small dining table in the middle. Outside of my bedroom door is a small kitchen and the bathroom. So those are all mine, at least for now.

I hope to go to either Venice or Padula tomorrow but Sunday is a difficult day to travel because bus and train schedules are light. I am here for 4 nights.

More tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. Scary that the kids followed you down the dead-end road. Glad they weren't little vicious street urchins ready to pelt you with rocks. -Shannon