Two weeks ago we were basking in the sunshine in Sardinia (see previous post, 9/27/2011) and now we have just completed a week in Padua/Venice, Italy. How we were fortunate enough to have the weather gods looking down on us, I have no idea, but we had a solid week in the low 80's and significant sunshine. (Note my tan above, whoo hoo!). At first, we were unhappy about the prospect of breaking up our holiday into two separate weeks, but we couldn't have asked for better weather as a result.
A post about Venice, Italy would hardly be worth it's salt without the indigenous gondola and gondoliers. In the photo above, the two gondoliers are hoping a tourist will engage him to take them through the sunlit waterways. At approximately € 80,00 for a half hour's ride, the gondolas primarily sit empty while tourists choose to walk the narrow lanes and streets. Haven't they heard about the recession?
While I am out looking for photos, many artists are painting al fresco capturing the last of the sun's rays in an array of hues in oils. Paintbrush in hand, this man is working on the shadows on the cement.
During my stroll through Venice I noticed that not all gondolas are the same. Some look a bit worse for the wear and tear and others have stylish accoutrements such as the one in the photo above. I couldn't help but overhear a tourist comment on this particular gondola by calling it"Princely." What an appropriate adjective to describe this means of transportation.
We chose to sit near the Rialto Bridge and have lunch at a nearby restaurant. They advertised homemade lasagna and it was truly delicious. It wasn't anywhere near this large of a portion. I think my resizing has given you the wrong impression. It looks absolutely mammoth in this photo.
People walking up and down Venice's charming canals forget that this is a living city where people go to work, the supermarket and the cleaners. The photo above was taken as a man leaned out of his window to water his window boxes.
Venice has to be one of the world's most romantic cities. I have been there twice before. Once with my 19 year old son in 1995 and once with my 78 year old mother-in-law. Both times I wished to return for a romantic look at Venice and this was the perfect time to do it. My husband had never seen Venice and was struck by it's beauty and charm. Together we spent nearly 9 hours on one day and another 4 hours the following day. We did a bit of shopping (I'll save this for another post) and enjoyed the delightful weather. As evening came we looked for a romantic place to have a few drinks and dinner near the water. I'm sure we will return to Venice in the future. It is truly a unique city.