Get it? We have "gondola" — got to — go back to Venice ...? Right.
Well, after 24 hours of travel, Jacob and I sat on a water taxi somewhere between the Marco Polo airport and the island of Venice. The "lagoon" was a vibrant blue — yet murky. And the air was thick with exhaust fumes from the other boats that plowed by.
As always, I had my phone in hand, Google Maps open — even though a nice lady at the airport's transportation booth told us which stop we needed. But the phone suggested something different. Jacob was willing to risk it, to follow Google Maps; I wasn't. Why not trust the local?
We got off where I wanted to — where the nice lady at the airport had told us to. It was wrong. With two large suitcases in tow, backpacks and small duffle bags to boot, we entered the city's cobblestone maze.
About an hour later we finally arrived at our Airbnb. Google Maps had said 20 minutes. Our gray shirts were soaked through. Our feet were barking. Our muscles sore. And our irritability levels had skyrocketed.
Before this point in our trip, we'd been committed to not napping upon arrival; let's just dive right in to explore the island.
But we did; we napped. We napped with the windows flung open because the air conditioning wouldn't cool and because our Airbnb host, "Guisy" (or Juicy, as we decided to translate), didn't know English. We welcomed the light breeze that occasionally graced through our small room and swatted at the stray mosquitoes that followed.
When we woke up two hours later, we decided: Now it was time to explore.