Wednesday, November 17, 2010
20 Things I Love About Venice
Prologue: I am staying in Venice for a week, and other than a few pre-arranged dates with couchsurfers to make sure I don't go insane, I am largely wandering the streets alone, putting my thoughts to paper, and loving it. I made a pact with myself to leave my camera in the apartment every time I venture out, so I will record my thoughts and observations with a pen, because this trip is largely about recapturing the poet's spirit I felt so strongly here when with my Ezra Pound classmates two summers ago.
Today, I shall post for you pictures of my apartment and the view from its balcony (because I am not cheating if I take pictures from within the apartment, you see), and also list some things I love about this city. Perhaps you can feel it or see it without my sharing pictures (however, I am going to take my camera out one afternoon and "write with light," because I just can't help myself).
Note: I have begun publishing my poetry on a sister blogpage, www.foropendiscussion.blogspot.com. There will be a delay before anything Venetian appears on it, as I like to spend some time with a poem before putting it out there, but I have been updating the site with recently finished material.
20 Things I Love About Venice
1) When saying goodbye on the phone, Italians say between 3-5 "ciao"s spoken fast and in a row.
2) Italians pronounce every vowel in ciao.
3) Men frequently sing to themselves on the street, in rain or fog.
4) Nowhere else in the world would I feel so safe in poorly-lit, tall, narrow alleys.
5) It is impossible to access one's sense of direction while wandering the winding streets of Venice.
6) Culturally-rich surprises can be found around corners, ie, the extended exhibit of Stanley Kubrick's photography from the 1950s.
7) The city is sinking unevenly, and there is a church tower leaning dangerously over a canal.
8) There are no cars.
9) Public transport is by boat.
10) The lagoon water is opaque emerald green.
11) There are umbrella stands inside the doors of all shops, and wellies are for sale around every corner. Winter flooding is a matter of fact.
12) Shopkeepers don't stand at their doorways yelling at me, "Yes, please!" and they don't follow my around in the store. (Sorry, Turkey. There are many things I love about you, but this is not one of them.)
13) Every time I leave the apartment with a certain goal in mind, I get lost or sidetracked. Plans get me out the door, but end there.
14) Italian is not a quickly-spoken language. The second to last syllable of every word is drawn out and stressed.
15) Women wear tall boots, colored or patterned tights, and short skirts.
16) The food is putting a kind of hearty nourishment into my body which Turkish tummy has deprived me of for two years.
17) Venice is home of tiramisu.
18) The view from my balcony of red-tiled roofs is evoking in me some kind of childhood memory of a Disney movie.
19) I am at a concert in the Salon of La Fenice, one of the most famous opera houses which burnt down and was rebuilt twice, and I have no idea what kind of music I purchased a ticket for, but there are exactly 15 different drums on stage.
20) My apartment is in an attic and has eaves. I've always wanted a "writing room" in such a space.