Saturday, June 17, 2017

Travel Blogging XII

Home in Western Wyoming: The small ship cruise from Malta up "the back of the boot" in Italy has concluded and we're home. The people on our cruise were nearly all nice folks, very pleasant, albeit libtard progressives.

We did our "who, us conservatives?" shtick well-remembered from university days and were accepted as okay folks. Meanwhile back in our cabin we'd snicker about how horrified they'd be if they knew we voted for and support Trump. Mostly nobody talked politics or religion, which was both smart and polite.

Interesting fact, the part of Italy we visited doesn't seem to have attracted many Muslim immigrants - a few but mostly in the Calabrian village which now makes a 'business' of 'socializing' economic migrants. It seems most want to get to Germany and Austria, or perhaps France and Belgium where the jobs are, or perhaps the more generous handouts.

Flying home from Europe always reminds me of the film title The Longest Day. Actual elapsed time from waking in Venice to bedding down in WY was 25+ hours, during which we slept little, perhaps an hour or two.

Most of the flying was routine, but the ground connection in Munich was a mini-nightmare. "Mini" in the sense that it wasn't protracted, rather it was compacted.

Our lame tour company gave us a 45 minute connection there between the flight from Venice and the flight to Denver; they would only change it at vast expense when the fault was theirs. The connection started positively, we were met at ramp-bottom by a van which whisked us to the right terminal and entry point. Then we were dropped off where the departure signs said our plane was boarding, but no one was at that gate.

We frantically asked personnel at another gate where our flight was boarding and were told another, nearby gate number. Then we couldn't find that gate as they were numbered "creatively." Eventually we did make our flight, probably some of the last to board. We could have done without the cliff-hanging drama.

Side note: Lufthansa has a lousy film library, or maybe the problem is Hollywood making crappy films. I did see one rather charming film of which I'd never heard: Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. Think of it as a peculiarly riveting cross between several genres: horror, coming of age, comedy, fantasy and love story. You won't be surprised to learn Tim Burton directed it, he loves and finds humor in the macabre.

Another strangely fascinating but flawed film is Assassin's Creed, imagine a clandestine war between Knights Templar and Assassins for possession of the infamous apple from Eden, much of it set in late 15th century Spain with Torquemada supposedly a Templar inquisitor. Too much over-the-top unbelievable ninja fighting, too little plot. It also has a modern component with hi-tech and covert action ... weird,  but visually amazing.

Anyway, we mostly had great weather, only one night of rough seas, and the only real rain we were out in was getting off the plane in Jackson last night. It was no gully-washer but we got damp and drove home behind the wiper blades' click-swish.

E got to see the Rialto Bridge which we'd missed on prior visits to Venice, she was happy. My favorite part of Venice was the water taxi ride from the hotel to the airport, very scenic and the taxi looked brand new and very nice. My favorite part of any visit to Venice is the boat ride out of town; that tells you something about my feelings for the iconic city.