Back In Wales for Only Two Days

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Oct 14 ~ Day #157
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$15700
$0.00
$13773.94
$87.73
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15190
6378.9
6752
119
28439.9
Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Oct 15 ~ Day #158
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$15800
$0.00
$13773.94
$87.18
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15190
6378.9
6752
119
28439.9

Current Location: Burry Port, Wales

Today’s Total Expenses: $0.00

Miles Traveled Today:
Zero

Back in Wales

We got back to Burry Port, Wales in the wee hours of the morning and pretty much fell into bed.

As we’re only here for a couple of days before heading off to Spain, a lot of our time will be spent sorting and re-packing our backpacks for the trip.

EasyJet

Before leaving for our two week adventure in Italy, Greece and Croatia, we had book our flight to Alicante through EasyJet’s website. We also pre-booked our checked luggage as it’s much more cost effective to do it that way than to check your luggage once you get to the airport.

On this flight there was no way we’d be able to get by with jut carry-on as we did with RyanAir. This time we needed to take all of our stuff with us – 2 fully loaded backpacks, our laptop and some carry-ons as well.

Geoff’s Doctor’s Appointment

Geoff had booked a doctor’s appointment for the day we got back and had to get up relatively early to keep that appointment.

It was a fairly easy walk from T & E’s house but E also got up early so she could drive him. Thanks E!

Fish & Chips

The two days just seemed to fly by. And, before we knew it, it was our last night in the UK.

It seemed appropriate that we end our stay in the UK the same way we started it – with fish & chips!

T brought home some fish & chips from the local chippy and we chatted about our adventures as we enjoyed the meal.

Back to Wales for a Couple of Days

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Oct 13 ~ Day #156
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$15600
$22.76
$13773.94
$88.29
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
15097+93=15190
6378.9
5966+786=6752
119
28439.9

Current Location: Burry Port, Wales

Today’s Total Expenses: $22.76

Transportation: $13.39 (€10.00)
Food: $9.37 (pizza – €7.00)

Miles Traveled Today:
Road Miles: 93 (20 miles – Venice to Treviso + 73 miles – Bristol to Burry Port)
Air Miles: 786 (Treviso to Bristol)

Last Stop at Our Favorite Café

Before checking out of our hotel, we again had breakfast at the corner café. Although this was only our third time here, it was a ritual we were going to miss.

Our coffee of choice was, yet again, cappuccino. After perusing the available pastries we chose something that most certainly had to be bad for us but we slowly savored every bite.

Checking Out of Our Venice Hotel

Knowing that the reception area of the hotel was on the second floor (our room was actually in a different building) we knew better than to drag our luggage up two flights of stairs just to check out.

As the room cost had been paid in advance, all we really had to do was return the key. I waited with the luggage while Geoff did that.

Venice Bus Station

With our luggage in hand we headed for the Venice bus station. This was easy to find as we already knew where it was – just across a bridge from the Venice train station.

From our hotel we walked along the Grand Canal until we saw the train station. Then we took the large, wide, white bridge across – you guessed it – another canal.

After that it was just a matter of dodging some traffic (and, remember, I already said that Italian drivers are crazy!) to get to the ticket office.

We purchased our tickets and went to the designated area to wait for our bus to arrive.

In keeping with my usual nervousness about missing any transportation, we had arrived more than half an hour ahead of schedule. But I was happy to wait knowing that we wouldn’t “miss the bus”.

Overall Impression of Venice

Truth be told, we weren’t all that sad to be leaving Venice. Three days was plenty for us.

We know that lots of people see Venice as a romantic destinations, but we didn’t. Actually, we saw it as rather run down and dirty. Most places were in desperate need of a fresh coat of paint. There was graffiti everywhere and the streets were dirty. We noticed that the length of time it took to get dog poop cleared off the streets was determined by how many people had walked through the poop and whether or not the canal overflowed and rinsed it with dirty water. Yuck!

Apologies to all those who rave about Venice but it’s not a city that we’ll be visiting again.

European Bus Travel

There were two buses that day that went to the Treviso airport. One left in the morning and got to the airport hours and hours before our flight back to the UK and the other one arrived at the airport in the evening less than an hour before the flight.

We took the earlier bus for two reasons – we didn’t want to be dragging our luggage around Venice and – we didn’t want to take the change of being late for our flight.

We had packed a lunch, we both had good books to read, so were were good to go.

Our bus arrived and it was modern, comfortable and clean.

The towns along the route were much more prosperous looking as wells as cleaner and more modern. There was lots of open space and even some farming along the way.

The trip took about an hour, even though we only covered about 20 miles. However, it was a pleasant and relaxing journey.

Treviso Airport

We arrived at Treviso airport at about noon, which meant we had about and 8 hour wait for our flight.

We found ourselves some comfy seat, at least as comfy as you can get in an airport. We had our packed lunch and then cracked open our books and immersed ourselves in their pages.

What? Pizza Again?

Although we had packed a lunch for today we hadn’t packed anything for dinner.

Geoff checked out the small café in the airport and, like all airports, the food was hugely expensive and the selection was extremely limited.

Geoff decided to head out of the airport to see if he could find a take-away with a better selection and better prices.

To my surprise he returned with a pizza in hand!

I was a bit confused seeing that we were still in Italy and our track record with pizzas had not been great. But, once again, it was the best deal of what was available.

To our delight, it was actually the best pizza we had while in Italy. Geoff explained that the place he got it from was actually run by orientals. Hmmmm – could that have something to do with it?

We had the pizza with our last one liter tetrapak of the €0.70 red wine. It was actually a pretty good meal.

Reunited With Our Traveling Companions

Shortly after we’d finished our dinner our traveling companions showed up.

While we were waiting for our flight to be called we swapped stories of our adventures over the last three days.

RyanAir On Time – Again!

Our RyanAir flight boarded on time, took off on time and landed in Bristol on time.

It was an uneventful fligh, which is the kind we like to have.

Late Arrival Back in Wales

After arriving back in Bristol, T & E picked up their cars. T headed back to Coventry so he could be back at work the next day. We piled into E’s car for the two-hour drive back to Burry Port in Wales.

Off To Italy

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Sep 29 ~ Day #142
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$14200
$151.36
$11943.89
$84.11
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
14364+73=14437
4515.8
5180+786=5966
119
25037.8

Location: Hotel Tre Santi, Treviso, Italy

Today’s Total Expenses: $151.36

Transportation: $95.64 ($78.90 airfare + $16.74 taxi)
Accommodation: $55.72

Miles Traveled Today:
Road Miles: 73 (Burry Port to Bristol)
Air Miles: 786 (Bristol to Treviso)

Last Minute Packing and Weighing

As predicted, we all had some last minute packing, unpacking and repacking combined with weighing the bags after each addition, substitution or subtraction.

We were close – very close – but within the specified limits.

The next step was to get to the airport.

Bristol Airport

Bristol Airport is about a two-hour drive from Burry Port, so we headed out in plenty of time.

We weren’t sure what to expect as this was the first experience, for all of us, with RyanAir. And, we’ve heard some horror stories about them. So, even though we were happy to get a really cheap flight, we were a bit anxious about the flight itself.

We also needed to park the car in long term parking but T had already pre-arranged that and we had the directions in hand. E was driving the three of us from Burry Port to Bristol and T was heading there from work in Coventry.

We were using a TomTom GPS to guide us to the Bristol airport but it conked out on us partway through the trip (it may not have been plugged in properly, we’re not sure). So, we then followed the signs to the airport. Actually, the signage could have been a lot better, but we still managed to get to our destination within 15 minutes of the planned time and quickly met up with T, checked the car in and boarded the shuttle to the airport.

RyanAir Check In and Boarding

With much trepidation we made our way to the RyanAir check in counter.

Although we didn’t have any bags to check, because we were not EU citizens, we needed to have our passports verified.

That went really smoothly – no problem at all.

We then went to the appropriate gate waiting area and waited for our flight to be called.

When it was time to board, we lined up with everyone else. Lots of people got into the line very, very early as RyanAir does not assign seats. It’s a first-come, first-served method of seat selection. That means, when you get on the plane you grab whatever seat you want from what is still empty. That’s why people line up early, so they get their pick of seats. All we were hoping for was to be able to sit together.

As people starting boarding, we noticed that a few people were required to prove that their luggage would fit in the little carry-on luggage gauge at the gate. You know what we mean – the metal tubes configured for carry-on luggage. The one that says “Your carry-on bag must be able to fit in here”, or something to that effect.

There were some people that were applying quite a lot of force to their bags to MAKE it fit. Some succeeded, some didn’t.

So, we began to second-guess our carry-on bags but we needn’t have worried. They didn’t even look twice at our carry-on and certainly didn’t require us to fit it into the measuring frame.

Once past that hurdle, we hurried onto the plane in search of seats. And, we were able to get seats next to each other – YAY!

After settling into our seats we noticed that we had more legroom than we have been used to on recent flights. It seems that was because RyanAir planes don’t have the pouch you usually see on the back of the seat in front of you. You know, the one that holds the magazines and barf bags. Who knew that simply eliminating that could give you a noticeable improvement in space.

By the way, we had boarded exactly on time and we also took off – exactly on time.

RyanAir Flight to Treviso, Italy

Treviso is actually a small airport not far from Venice.

The flight to Treviso was smooth and uneventful.

One thing about RyanAir is that they charge, pretty much, for everything. There’s no free coffee, tea or soft drinks. So, if you want anything to eat or drink, be prepared to pay for it.

They also sell other things on board, too. Believe it or not they have someone come through the cabin selling stuff like electronic cigarettes (so smokers can get their nicotine fix while not actually lighting up a cigarette) and lottery tickets, among other things. And, it’s done almost like the hot dog vendors at a baseball game – really. It’s hard to explain in words but I think you get my drift.

We also landed on time which is celebrated by a special announcement and with the type of music that you hear at the start of a horse race. It’s kind of kitschy, but you remember it.

Hotel in Treviso

Our flight was an evening flight, so we landed at the Treviso airport around 10:30pm.

We had picked a hotel through Expedia and hoped that trying to find something reasonable didn’t mean that we were finding something “cheap”.

We grabbed a taxi at the airport and gave the driver the address of the Hotel Tre Santi. We watched as we passed many other hotels that we saw on Expedia that were out of our budget and again kept our fingers crossed about the one we had picked.

As the cab pulled up to the Hotel Tre Santi it was apparent that it was a smaller, older hotel.

The night staff was friendly and helpful but didn’t speak much English. We were able to ascertain that the cost of the room included breakfast in the little café just off the lobby.

We were give the key to our room and instructions about where it was located.

The room was clean, but old and very basic. Oh well, it was just for one night. And, being tired from our day of traveling, all we really wanted to do was fall off to sleep anyway.

Packing, Weighing and Moving Furniture

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Sep 27 ~ Day #140
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$14000
$0.00
$11770.38
$84.07
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
14364
4515.8
5180
119
24178.8
Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Sep 28 ~ Day #141
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$14100
$22.15
$11792.53
$83.63
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
14364
4515.8
5180
119
24178.8

Location: Burry Port, Wales

Today’s Total Expenses: $22.15 (Sept. 28)

Food: $22.15 (£14.00 – fish & chips – Sept. 28)

Miles Traveled Today:
Zero

Combining Days – Again

We have, again, combined a couple of days. Putting them in separate posts would make for very short posts.

Packing and Weighing

As we mentioned earlier, we found perfect carry-on bags that met RyanAir’s restrictions. We are now in the process of deciding what to take with us for the two weeks we’ll be in Europe.

It’s tough to pack two weeks worth of clothing, toiletries, etc into a carry-on bag, but that’s exactly what we need to do. And, we need to stay within the weight restriction as well.

Fortunately, T & E have a scale for weighing bags and we are certainly putting that to good use as we try different combinations of items to take with us.

We think we’ve got it cracked, but I’m sure there will be last minute substitutions and/or additions before we actually leave for the airport on Wednesday.

Moving Furniture

This may seem like a strange entry for our blog, but while we’re away, T & E are having their hardwood floors refinished. In order for that to happen, all the furniture needs to be removed from the floors that are being refinished.

So, we spent time both on Monday and Tuesday moving furniture to other parts of the house to make sure all the floors are clear.

Fish & Chips

On Tuesday evening we opted for fish & chips from the local “chippy”.

Okay, okay – hey, we’re in England and we just can’t get enough fish & chips.

A Real English Breakfast

Our transportation, accommodation, food and entertainment cost so far

Sep 26 ~ Day #139
Budget to date
Spent today
Total to date
Daily average
Total
$13900
$0.00
$11770.38
$84.68
Miles by Road
Miles by Sea
Miles by Air
Miles by Train
Total Miles
14364
4515.8
5180
119
24178.8

Location: Burry Port, Wales

Today’s Total Expenses: $0.00

Miles Traveled Today:
Zero

Big English Breakfast

This morning we had a huge English breakfast expertly prepared by E, who, by the way, is NOT English but is married to a Brit.

We had such things as bacon, eggs, sausages, black sausage, fried tomatoes, toast and more. We were completely and thoroughly stuffed by the time we were finished.

Thanks E!

RyanAir Boarding Passes

Along with the many, many rules that go along with getting cheap flights through RyanAir, another rule about providing them with passenger information, such as passport numbers, well in advance and with us flying with them on September 29th, we were getting really near their deadline.

So, today was the day. T took care of going online and making sure that RyanAir had all the info they wanted and then he printed our boarding passes.

We still need to get our carry-on luggage packed, and weigh it as well, but then we’re good to go!

Walk Into Pembrey

As today was such a beautiful day, we decided to take a long walk and actually found ourselves in the town of Pembrey which is the next town over from Burry Port.

Actually, it’s kind of tough to determine when you leave one and are in the other, they just kind of continue from one into the other.

Nevertheless, with the guidance of a helpful resident in Pembrey, we found a wonderful walking path. Even though we were still, technically, in town it felt like we were out in the country.

It was a well-established dirt path with overhanging trees that took us by houses, pastures and parks.

We emerged in a fairly new housing development and continued our walk back to T & E’s house in Burry Port.

Amazing Lamb Dinner

T & E had prepared an amazing lamb dinner for this evening’s meal. It was done to perfection and, once again, we came away from the table stuffed.