"Venice really surprised me" Venice by craic
Venice Travel Guide: 8,261 reviews and 21,914 photos
I have seen so many photos of it, and read so many books about it, and seen so many movies set in Venice I thought I was emotionally prepared.
My friend Riccardo warned me as I left Rome for my first trip there - No matter what you are expecting it will not be what you are expecting.
And this was very true.
I reeled back to Rome after my two days gibbering like an idiot.
It was more beautiful than I would have believed possible. And it was also smaller. On a different scale from what I was expecting. I described it as intimate.
Something about there being no cars in the streets makes it such a pleasant place to be for me. I am a non driver and in most places in the world cars are everywhere with their noises and their stinks and the aggressive way they make people react.
On my second visit with my family my daughter noticed a boat with two young people, turning up the music and setting off at a fast pace - just like two young people in a car. It made both of us smile.
You glance down a side canal, a man is unloading crates of soft drink.
The Vigili del Fuoco chug past in their boat.
It's a human city. The size of human beings.
On my first trip I purposefully did not take my camera. I was going to work there, give a lecture, not a pleasure trip, PLUS I wanted to see this city which I had waited so long to see with nothing in front of my eyes. I wanted to see it just as I saw it.
Perhaps that was one of the reasons it hit me so hard.
Sometimes I think we protect ourselves from seeing by taking photographs.
I will load some pics in a day or two from my second trip with my family.
I have a friend who is a local in Venice and she led me through the place taking her avoid-the-tourists routes - which kind of drive her crazy - which is why she never takes a vaporetto - and I saw narrow alleys (I mean narrow!) and odd remnants of former times and old stories - and i felt very much off the beaten path.
Occasionally we would burst out into a street full of tourists - but it was like we were invisible - they didn't see us - and on we plunged.
- Pros:More beautiful in its very own original Venice way than it is possible to imagine.
- Cons:It closes up so early. It's 9pm, everyone go home to bed.
- In a nutshell:There's only one Venice.
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