As I hinted at on Facebook the other day, here's my brief story about seeing the Sistene Chapel by wheelchair! (I'm on the hotel computer in Venice... first time on a computer in Italy... so this will be brief.)
Our wonderful guide, Carol, took us to the Vatican to see the Sistene Chapel. The day we went, the lines to get in wrapped around the block and took an hour and a half... usually only take 15-20 minutes. We found out at the door that St. Peter's was closed, which was crowding the Vatican museum. Once inside the door (and AFTER paying) we saw the the lines continue for another hour and a half! I'm feeling really sick, and my back and knees are hurting, so Carol gets me a wheel chair, and we go to the front of the line!
Everywhere we go, crowds of people part like the Red Sea. I even ride a wheelchair lift at one point. I'm a little embarassed, but at the same time, I felt so bad, physically, that it was worth it. I enjoyed the Sistene Chapel immensely, and afterwards was a bit rested after so much walking and standing the rest of our site-seeing days.
Being in a wheelchair gives an unusual vantage point.... of how it is for those who are always in such a situation. As this was happening, I was reading a terrific book, "Crossing to Safety" by Wallace Stegner, in which one of the heroines gets polio, so her world is changed forever. (It's a terrific book, by the way... the first I've ever read on my new Kindle!)
So... tonight's our last night in Venice, and tomorrow we take a train to Milan to see The Last Supper, and the next morning we're on a plane back to the States. It's been a fabulous 13 days... and I highly recommend it for YOUNG PEOPLE!! (I realize the irony is that most young people can't afford it, and by the time you can afford it, your body can't keep up!)
That's all for now. Ciao!