Venice: The Glamorous Life From A Water Taxi.

"Is it glamorous to be a water taxi driver here in Venice? Because it feels that way to me."

This is what I said to the driver who was scheduled to pick me up at the airport here in Venice. It was late afternoon. The Sun was shining. All the water taxi drivers congregated by the ports were stylishly dressed. And as my driver drove me into the heart of Venice, he waved to so many other drivers and people he knew.

He said, "No." But he smiled. So I think he was lying.

I sat in the back of the speed boat, out of the covered area. I wanted to stand up and see as much as possible. In the time it took us to go from the airport to my hotel, I managed to take 752 pictures on my iPhone. There was just so much to see!

An amazing late afternoon! Gorgeous shot of the water and the city.

As we sped through the marked lanes, closer to the city, I noticed there were posts with the speed limit listed...

How funny! Never occurred to me this would be necessary.

And speaking of "never occurring"... I hadn't realized that emergency vehicles would (naturally) be operating by boat as well.

An ambulance leaving the hospital!

I had an understanding of how the city sits in the water. But still managed to be in awe of exactly how it looks...

Some doors barely have a stoop. They open right onto the water. It's so crazy to me. People who live here are so brave!

Life here is so amazing. It is bold. Living here would require confidence. You can't hide, tucked away in little fortresses - as I have, in big metropolises. You have to face the water on a regular basis.

(In case you didn't realize... I have a great respect - aka "fear" - of water and the ocean. Always have. I don't mess with it. I pray it doesn't mess with me. Part of this world tour... Cage-diving with sharks and learning to paddle board... Is about me getting over that fear.)

People in Italy always seem so happy. There was plenty of laughter here, as we passed by...

And the afternoon Sun was setting off a gorgeous view all around me... Creating stunning silhouettes.

We tucked down a canal to head to the hotel. And things got tighter. We had to navigate curves and turns. And we had to accommodate other boats, as well as gondolas.

Oh! And little foot bridges overhead!

Things got very tight, my driver would often have to use his hand or leg, shoved against a wall or bridge, to help steer us and prevent us from hitting a wall.

These drivers are LEGIT! And taking them is NOT CHEAP! But well worth it.

Yep. I'm pretty happy to be here. Expensive as it is. Wind blown and all.