For the next few days, Jack Sh*t is chronicling his adventures on his recent trip to Italy as well as including tips to help you plan your own international travel. It is his special way of saying "Nanna nanna boo boo, I went to Italy!" to all his loyal readers.
Every time my wife Anita and I spoke to a gondolier while in Venice, he assured us that that very moment was the best time to take a gondola ride.
10 a.m.? The perfect time! You beat the crowds!
1:30 p.m.? The ideal time! Everyone’s at lunch so you get a better deal!
4:45 p.m.? No time perfecter! Everyone else is preoccupied buying genuine Italian glass made in China!
We finally broke down and took a gondola ride. I mean, you have to! It’s Venice, for God’s sake! Yes, it’s touristy and cost too much, but you just have to do it.
Do’s and Don’t of Gondola Rides in Venice
DO negotiate for the cost, details and duration of your ride.
DON’T pay with a jar of pennies and nickels.
DO ask your gondolier to sing a beautiful Italian ballad.
DON’T ask your gondolier to riverdance.
DO sit back and enjoy the splendor of an old-world tradition.
DON’T engage in gondola races along the Grand Canal.
DO nod in appreciation when the gondolier tells you that you’re passing the home of Marco Polo.
DON’T ask if he’s the dude that invented that pool game.
DO use this as an opportunity to practice your Italian.
DON’T use this as an opportunity to join the “Rock the Gondola” club.
DO offer a friendly wave to folks on bridges as you go beneath.
DON’T scream out “LOOK AT ME! I’M ON A GONDOLA, BITCHES!”