|Vaporetto Ramp, Grand Canal, Venice, Italy © Doug Hickok|
Since no cars are permitted in the city of Venice, the best way to travel from place to place, other than walking the streets, alleyways and bridges, is riding the waterways on public transportation, known as the canal bus or vaporetto. Vaporettos make stops to pick-up passengers at vaporetto ramps, which are like bus stops, strategically located along the canals of Venice. When the vaporetto pulls-up, you just walk down the ramp and hop on. Vaporetto means "steamship" in Italian, but it may also mean "to vanish in a vapor", much like what happened to planet Earth in A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Poof! Vaporetto! And much like what happened to the passengers waiting on this ramp just moments before I snapped this picture. Poof! Vaporetto! Probably the handy work of Vogons.