Saw every species on earth, photograph of Brahms, Schönbrunn, and in our spare time … Venice.
5-Aug-1985 Vienna => 6-Aug-1985 Venice
Checked out at 10:00 went to Südbahnhof, put stuff in locker with broken key (had to use penknife to turn it). At Karlplatz we went to work history museum of 1870 – 19-something. Had rooms dedicated to Mahler, Schoenberg and Berg. Saw pictures that [unintelligible] painted manuscripts and letters. Saw some famous paintings. Best part, I thought, was a late photograph of Johannes Brahms! After this we ate at a stand and then to Hapsburg Palace. Walked around a bit and found our way to Museum of Art and Museum of Natural History.
Museum of Art was closed so we spent afternoon in the other. Saw skeleton of Allosaurus, Diplodocus and Iguanodon and Ichthyosaurus. Many prehistoric human bones and artifacts. Extremely large collection of every possible mineral. And the top floor was a collection of every species on earth from tape worm to sea elephants. From there we went back to center and ate at Nordsee and from there to Schönbrunn. Walked around a bit, saw roman ruins and Gloria — wrote some postcards until place closed.
Ate again at cafe and made it to train station. The cars were rather full when we got there — Frank was confused as to whether or not the train split & some cars didn’t go to Venice or not, but eventually found a cabin that was to ourselves (for the time being, anyway). Managed to sleep a bit until the tip of Austria when the other four people came into our cabin — An English older couple & two young girls (Maggie and Barbara Streisand). Slept a little more — train got more and more crowded — the hallways were packed with people. Got to Venice at 9:35am. I stood in line (probably needlessly) for 2 hours exchanging our shillings. We found hotel right way — good second class, we got a discount by showing Frommers. Place is arranged strangely with very odd floors. Room is very nice and big.
Then ate lunch at cafe by train station, came back in rain & slept until 7:30pm. Walked around (quite a distance) for a while and took Vaporetto back — a really nice ride and the only time to get a good look at city properly. Made it to restaurant just in time to eat something before it closed. Came home and planned for Florence.
I think Dr. McVoy suggested we go to the Work History museum, which was worth it. I didn’t mention the most memorable part of the Natural History Museum – the Selakant! Again, my memory of this place was that it was completely empty except for us. Same with Schönbrunn. I don’t think anyone else was there. That’s weird.
Frank really loved the furniture in the Venice hotel room. This was before I really paid any attention to that sort of thing (about 20 years before). I had created a memory in my head that we had each eaten a large peach that we bought from a street vendor, which then put us to sleep for 12 hours. I guess that’s not exactly right. We bought the peaches, but we only slept through the afternoon. The exaggeration makes sense in that, basically, it wiped out the one day we had to spend in Venice. We never made it to St. Marks, and it rained most of the time. But the boat ride was nice – Frank used his Italian version of Spanish for the first time to get the tickets. And the dinner was monumental. It was the first time I ever had espresso. Frank had to explain it to me. Where did he hear about all this fancy culture stuff like armoires and espresso?