Saturday, July 4, 2009

How to get gypped in Venice.

Go to the bathroom. Literally. When we were walking around Venice yesterday, Mike had told us that to use the public restrooms, you have to pay a Euro. That seemed easy enough, and we were glad that he told us. The time eventually came for some of us to use the bathroom (except for me (Chris) with my steel bladder)...the situation was precipitated by Mike's giant jug-o-wine as shown in the videos below. You can tell how much I enjoyed my glass and a half of it, can't you? But just think, if I didn't drink that, perhaps the bathroom situation might have been a little more dire. I digress. We walked around in a few circles and eventually found the closest bathroom in a shady hallway. At the entrance to the bathroom stood a woman, with a little cup, and demanded payment before you could enter. She stood in your way, and grabbed your arm if you tried to ignore her/walk past. Because of her persistence, it was assumed that she was who you had to pay to use the facilities. Little did Alice and Mike know was that there was a turnstile at the real entrance to the bathroom (which according to them was very clean) that made you pay 1.5 Euros in order to get in. There is only one logical conclusion. Mike and Alice were duped. Had. Taken for a ride. Conned. Bamboozled. Cheated. Flimflammed. Shafted. Swindled. Ripped off. Hornswoggled. Or quite literally, gypped. You see, the woman who forced the 1 Euro payment was a pregnant gypsy. It cost 5 Euro for them to use the bathroom.

Though, that is nothing compared to the most expensive ice cream we have ever eaten in our lives. You see, we had been walking for a while, probably a few miles at this point, and it was hot and we were tired, and Mike wanted to sit. We had already seen a lot, as we were currently in San Marco's Square. We saw the basilica complete with golden mosaics and monuments. I think what actually may have happened, is the gelato we ate was made with pieces of gold from the mosaics. That is the only way I can justify the price. We all got what was essentially a sundae with (aside from the gold) either hot fudge or caramel and whipped cream, only mine had nuts. (I set that one up for you on a tee. Swing away.) We also got a jug of water with it too. I think the purpose of the water was to make the pieces of gold go down easier, since most people are not used to eating precious metals. This cost us about 15 Euros each, with tip it amounted to about 53 Euros. Translate that to real money (i.e. the dollar) and what do you get? About 74 dollars. But, me and Alice now have enough gold in our stomachs to make some nice bling. We have already signed a contract with Kay Jewelers. The only issue is if we still have it floating around when we pass through the metal detectors on the flight home. Ouch.

Tonight we go to another BBQ on base, and watch fireworks. Tomorrow we head for Rome via Venice via Sacile. Hopefully this time on the train there won't be people begging us for money, or a sip of our soda. That was a bit awkward last time. This time I have a plan, though. "Cough hack cough cough swine flu cough hack" *hand motion shooing away*. That'll learn 'em.

There might be some issues with our next posts however (which is why we have been posting so much now). The 3rd day here or so, our trusty Brookstone adapter/converter blew, taking with it my power adapter for the Mac. We have been able to keep it charged using Mike's power adapter so far, but he leaves for Afghanistan soon and needs to take it with him. We ordered a new one and shipped it as fast as we could, but it never showed up. Our only hope is 2 certified Apple resellers that are in Rome around where we will be staying. One is closed on Sunday, the other didn't have times listed that I could find, but it is, according to google maps, a 47 second walking distance from our hotel. We will hope for the best. Most/all of our hotels have computer access though, but if gelatos in Venice cost 25 dollars each, I don't want to come back to the US as an amputee.


  1. A steel bladder? You should really see a doctor about that, Chris. ;)

    Nearly $75 for ice cream? Pardon me, but…HOLY SHIT, YA’LL. That better have been the best ice cream in like, the entire world. Nay, the entire UNIVERSE.

  2. Let's break that $75 down...
    Gelato manufacturing = $5
    Gelato cold-storage warehousing = $10
    Refrigerated trucking of gelato to port = $10
    Refrigerated shipping of gelato to Venice = $15
    Hand-trucking gelato to store (running very fast so doesn't melt) = $15
    Refrigeration cost at store = $5
    Labor costs to serve = $5
    Toppings = $5
    Store profit = $5

    Gelato in Venice $75,
    Experiencing the high cost of everything in Venice...priceless

  3. Hmm...with all this talk of gelato am I so wrong to feel strangely cheated on?