Venice (the rest)

Finally, the Venice photos.

As with everything on this trip, I did no research beforehand and had no idea what to expect. I didn’t know, then, that Venice is nothing but a big tourist destination with few actual inhabitants anymore. People everywhere with cameras slung around their shoulders and white socks pulled up near the knee.

But the architecture is still there. And it was nice playing the tourist without worrying about maps or directions or remembering the way back: Mara and Davor were in charge of that.

So this is one of the first views coming into Venice after you’ve passed the cruise ships.

And as I said a moment ago, Mara and Davor took possession of the map and I didn’t worry about getting around.

Here’s the stand to get on the boats that take you around the grand canal. The drivers have the challenge of staying on schedule despite floating, and they accomplish this by slamming into the stand on arrival.

Another shot from the boat.

Then we came into San Marco square and I thought Dad would get a kick out of this statue that I imagine addresses the fact that Venice was part of the Roman empire.

Holy run-on sentence, Batman!

And there they are: the tourists. Everywhere. Packed in. Walking slowly. Snapping photos. Cec is there at the left.

Venice has a big carnival like New Orleans or Rio (come on – remember The Count of Monte Cristo? The Wings of the Dove?), but theirs involves masks and capes. I could imagine that it would be terrifiying to be in that labyrinth with people in masks and all sorts of loud noises. Although like anything I imagine it’s not what it used to be. Anyway, there are masks for sale everywhere as souvenirs. I liked these cyborg masks.

Again with the San Marco.

Me posing and Mara being artful with the angle.

Here was a couple getting married.

Random street.

View from a bridge over the grand canal.

And another shot of all the people. Was imagining the panic attack Dad would have in this crowd. Or maybe “fury” is the better word.

Here’s a clich√©: tourists in a gondola. The gondoliers go around soliciting rides. Heard one of them say to two blondes: “No gondola? No martini? No party?” They giggled, but it didn’t work.

Oh, here I am at lunch getting a three-way counseling session on life and love. Everyone’s older and wiser and knows better, and I’m just a kid making mistake after mistake.

Canal.

Graffiti.

Small canal avec laundry.

We made our way into the old Jewish section of town, one of the few areas where non-tourists and non-students are still living.

Canal.

Here’s Davor plotting our escape. Note the gelato nearby.

Kids. Clearly about to start something.

You can’t sling a cat without hitting a church.

Little winding alley.

Back now in San Marco Square. Tourists. Some more well-dressed than others.

Just a building with shadows and light while the day’s coming closer to the end.

A view underneath the previous.

And this amused me: this giant cruise ship lumbering into the canal and obscuring the picturesque view we were all surely there for. It was enormous. Note all those tiny people on the deck.

There. Now I’ll never have to go back again. Did I mention it was hot as hell? But luckily we were there early enough in the summer that the canals really hadn’t reached their pungent best yet. I can’t even imagine.