Something for the weekend

on

Bild 592

Mornings in Venice are truly something special. It's one of the few occasions when you see real Italians and hear their language spoken everywhere; descending at Fondamente Nove, they greet each other passing by or stop to exchange a few words. They stand drinking espresso at the bars of small cafés and make their way to work through the tourist free streets. There is the smell of freshly brewed coffee and washing being hung out to dry for the day while the sun is still a pale, pink disc hanging low on the horizon.

Bild 580

Bild 589

Bild 334

A rare quiet moment on the Rialto

Bild 332

Bild 313

Bild 593

Bild 602

Bild 611

Bild 613

Bild 366

Bild 371

Bild 374

Bild 376

Bild 380

At the sun began to warm the tops of the buildings, I took the boat out to other parts of the city to escape the hoards of San Marco. La Giudecca charmed me with its metal bridges and leafy parks. I sat alone by the edge of the water reading my book and lifting my eyes from time to time to watch the gilttering sunlight on its surface. At midday, I entered into a restaurant where a man was sitting alone at the bar. Inside, the was the rush of conversation of a group of men drinking espresso and some students in animated discussion over their pizzas. I took a seat at the last free table and ordered spaghetti alle vongole (with clams). From the kitchen, I could see a large saucepan bubbling on the stove and the grey haired waiter explained apologetically that it would take a few more minutes. Then all of a sudden, silence descended leaving alone me to savour every mouthful.

Bild 433

View from the tower of San Giorgio Maggiore

Bild 432

Bild 460

Bild 466

Bild 473

The charming restaurant where I had a wonderful lunch on La Giudecca

Bild 494

On La Giudecca

Bild 480

Bild 486

Bild 501

Bild 505

Bild 518

Bild 520

Bild 527

On the Lido, I saw the Adriatic sea for the first time and felt the sadness of seeing Hotel des Bains boarded up, the legendary place where Diaghelev died and the setting for Visconti's Death in Venice. I walked over masses of white shells, passing by deserted bathing huts of grand hotels. On the main street, a woman stood talking on her mobile phone, repeating "Faccio la signora!" while others in jackets with fur lined collars sat outisde at cafés, smoking, chatting and drinking large glasses of white wine, happy that the weekend had finally arrived.

Bild 541

At the Lido

Bild 545

Trees in the old Jewish cemetary on the Lido

Bild 550

Bild 552

On the shores of the Adriatic

Bild 637

Interesting underwear near the Academia

Bild 640


Bild 642

Bild 655

Bild 681


Bild 728

In the garden of the Peggy Guggenheim foundation. The writing behind reads, "If the form disappears, its root still remains."

Bild 732

Bild 738

Bild 740

Bild 744

Bild 751

Bild 754

Bild 775

Bild 779

Bild 781

Bild 785

Bild 794

Bild 798

Bild 800

In my opinion, the loveliest view of Venice is from the Academia bridge

Bild 806

Bild 808

Bild 817

Bild 825

Bild 826

Bild 850

A young Bardot

Bild 854

Bild 861

Bild 876

Bild 867

I took a final trip to Isola San Michele in the final afternoon before the clocks went back and sat reading by the statues I have come to love and recognise. Around me was the sound of sweeping brushes against the stone as people cleaned the graves.

Bild 889

Bild 892

Bild 913

Bild 893

Bild 896

Bild 921

That was to be the last fine evening before heavy raindrops began to fall from a sky soon covered with dark grey clouds. In the vaporetto to the centre the next morning, a woman got on board carrying a little dog in her arms who whimpered the whole journey, as if in protest against the disappearence of the sun and seagulls perched on wooden posts in the middle of the canal. I discovered the melancholy of Sundays and the buildings with their faded or peeling exteriors closed for the long holiday weekend. At the Bacini stop, a neon sign declared that "something strange happened here" and I wondered what. I spent the morning at the Academia and then looking at some remarkable photos by a young Stanley Kubrick before moving on to the Fortuny museum filled with the kind remarkable dresses Proust's narrator would have bought for Albertine. I experienced the smell of lunchtime behind closed shutters with the sound of cutlery scraping against plates filled with a desire to be a part of that.

As my boat taking me back to the airport was pulling out of Murano, I caught sight of a black and white cat perched upon the edge of a balcony high up. Through the open window, I felt the breeze and a few raindrops brushed against my cheek. It was the end of a wonderful trip.

Bild 958

Bild 977

0 comments:

Post a Comment