Saturday, 12 October 2013

How infrequent sunshine can cause feet to ache

Deispite having had a veiry wakeful night, I have been out and about inthe sunlight. It is warm, the raincoat is back st the hotel and I am sitting on a stone  bench on the edge of Dorsoduro, opposite Giudecca, almost back at the hotel. Not that I am in a great hurry to returnto that stuffy and uncomfortable shoebox.

The schoolchildren are coming home from school and there is a lot of excited chatter, along with the yapping and barking of far too many dogs. I don't know what has happened to all the cats, but Venice is teeming with dogs of all sizes and shapes, and one of them sat on my feet yesterday on the ferry.
Yesterday we went to the Giardini, at the end, so to speak, of Venice. We tried to find the statue ofVerdi, with the nose hammered off by some loutish vandal, but could not find it. It was a very pleasant day, wandering around open pace with large trees and parks, and although there were plenty of us tourists, there were lots of people who live there. It was washing day, so clothes and sheets were drying on lines suspended between windows. We noted a very leaning church bell tower, and found a little restaurant where we had lunch.

Getting around Venice is not cheap, although obviously the city feels that havibg 20 million tourists a year ought to render them some profit, as well as helping to pay for the continous costs of infrastructure. After the Giardini, we took a ferry to Murano, where I bought a little decorative bottle. And we visited the Duomo, a building splendid in its simplicity and ferviur, and with am amazing floor made from matbles and semiprecious stones. It was taken up some years ago, the foundations fixeud up and strenghtened, and the floor relaid. It is wonderfully decorated and very harmonious.

Venice is visited by huge cruise ships, and I gather that the waterways have had to be dredged to allow the ships to grt in and out. Opinions vary as to whether allowing these ships to come in and out is a good thing. One person atgued that an aircraft crash over the industrail area of Marghere would have far more devastating consequences, but of course the big ships have effects each day.

Nora and John are returning their hired car to Milan, so I have been left to my own resources today. I went to the Guggenheim, which is very close to my hotel, and while I enjoyed a lot of it, Itdid seem to me that  much modern art is junk. There was another exhibition on, which included works by Odilon Redon, and I do love his art.

After all that I went to San Marco where I soaked up some more sun and beauty, then wandered around and got lost. That meant I did not get to where I had planned to be, too many wrong turns, map print size much too tiny, not to mention my poor navigational skills. But I did find a hole in the wall, to replenish my cash, and they are remarkably difficult to find. The holes, that is.

Many of the shops for both leather and glass are now owned by Chinese and  the shops at Murano have a lot to say about the imitation Venetian glass and other Italian products.

The number of pigeons is less  and the government had prohibited feeding these birds - not thst this stops a lot of idiots from doing so. Apparently the government paid large sums in compensation to those who sold pigeon food.

I am sitting here wondering at what time the huge cruise ship down at the edge of the fondament might begin its departure, as it would be auite pleasant to gawk at it and take photos. Yesterdat our ferry and a ship passed each other, and there they all eere, on the decks, and the skies were full of the flhes of cameras

1 comment:

Elephant's Child said...

Love that you are getting out in the sunshine.
Loathe big cruise ships.