Uh-oh . ..I can feel it happening. It’s that subtle, underground magnetism, much like the moon’s tug of the “acqua bassa” (low water) we observed yesterday. It’s waiting for me with each morsel, sip, bond, unexpected detail, discovery.
It’s that crazy little thing called. . .love.
Last week I was in love with Buenos Aires, mostly for its tango culture. This week I’m in love with Venice, mostly for its mystery and complexity.
The day began with exploring the Accademia, the home of pre-19th century art. Sure , I was a bit tired and groggy when we started out and even during the first hour of strolling through the deserted galleries, and then I discovered Polimnia (by Canova), the Greek mythological muse of sacred poetry, hymns, geometry, and meditation.
Sitting amongst the splendor of some of the world’s most magnificent art, I remembered to pinch myself to remember to simply live in the moment. And my moments here were filled with amazement.
We had booked the Venice Bites Food Tour which met right outside the Accademia, and what a gastronomic and comedic treat we were in for in the next 4+ hours!!
Adam and Maya filled our eyes, ears, and bellies with the best off-the-beaten-tourist-path-family-owned-and-operated eateries and artisan shops in Dorsoduro, San Polo, Rialto. Beginning with a caffè corretto (coffee corrected with grappa) and ending with a Select (not Aperol, not Campari, in between), we were regaled with stories, food, and a clear sense that these ex-Pats were well-immersed and well-loved in their community.
From our “Tony Bennett” barista. . .
To a dog-friendly watering hole . .
To the best, most award-winning cicchetti (1.30Euro/piece) in Venezia. . .
And the cleanest, most filtered free tap water. . . (acqua rubinetto) . . . .125 around town. . .
The floating vegetable market which has been here for 71 years. . .
And the most beautiful carciofi which made me want to grab it to take home, bake, enjoy with a bottle of the house wine of which you can buy a liter for 5 Euros. . .
The strongest coffee in town, haunted by students, not us. . .
A seafood lunch ( after 5 food stops!!). . . .
Un dolce (dessert) of frittelle and a look at a seasonal favorite. .lingue di suocera (mother-in-law tongue). . . .(I think I must go back to sample these!). . .
And the “bonds,” those tied-together stone structures of the heart between homes that indicated two families who were bound together by friendship,marriage, birth, or business and wanted to proclaim that to the world.
(Perhaps a marriage bond? Note the two crests at the top, then the larger ornate crest at the bottom.)
Botteghe (boutiques) of mask artisans, glass artisans, cheese makers. . . .oh my. . .
And our final stop on the back-side of Rialto market for a Select.. . With a lesson in always looking the bartender in the eye and asking for Aperol, Select, or Campari CON PROSECCO because otherwise you might just get soda water. . .
Mamma mia!! I’m in love.