I woke this morning with Venice on my mind.
A cache of old travel photos has held me captive to the wonder and glorious beauty that is Venice. The pic’s took me right back….
After staying with friends in Fabriano (famous for making beautiful paper) I jumped on a train to Venice (Venezia to the locals). It was winter, picture much snow and minus freezing temperatures. I remember the train pulling up into Venezia Santa Lucia railway station and me dragging my ridiculously oversized suitcase towards a hotel agent where I spent too much money on accommodation* (luxurious and right on the Canal, but too much money).
I hopped on the ferry and we headed up the Grand Canal. And that’s when it happened….
My eyes widened in utter joy and amazement at the magic that I found myself in. It was snowing. I was bobbing along the Grand Canal looking out in wide eyed glee while snow flakes fell on the most beautiful mad city I had ever seen before. I think to date it is the best introduction to a city I’ve ever had the pleasure of making. All these years later I can still picture and feel the magic of that moment. There is not many times I can say I’m truly present. You know, not thinking about something thats come before or will in the future. Though on that day, in that ferry while it snowed on the most beautiful jewels of buildings rising from the water I was 100% in the moment. Locked, stocked and two smoking barrels present.
It literally took my breath away, and has kept a piece of my heart ever since. I spent the next four days wandering and getting lost in alleys and canals, getting my fix of art, architecture and food. The Peggy Guggenheim museum still rates as one of my all time favourite gallery experiences (only topped by my recent visit to the Guggenheim in New York, which BTW is the holy grail of galleries in the world, in my small humble opinion).
Wandering through the city, it felt like you were in a painting it was THAT beautiful. You are literally walking in an open air museum/gallery/architectural digest of who’s who – it’s no wonder its a Unesco World Heritage site. I hope all the efforts to preserve and protect this jewel of a beauty from a rising water line are successful. If your looking for a little bit of old school magic in this sometimes tough, cynical and busy world, Venice is the ticket. No place else like it.
What’s your magical travel memory, the one that had you stopped in your tracks with joy?
*ridiculous sized suitcase and paying a small fortune for a hotel = my rookie travel status. It was my first overseas trip and much has been learnt since then for me to share with you lovely people about the fine art of adventure and travel.