The Mediterranean Cruise (Part 3 of 13)

Venice (cont’d)

I had been to Venice before and that was the time when the world did not face too much economic hardship. This time seemed different. There was not much of energy around the city. The tourist crowd grew bigger. The line-up got bigger. St. Mark square got smaller. There were cleaning and renovating everywhere. There was scaffolding surround the tower and other parts of the building. The crowd was big and the bridges all got tourist on them taking pictures. It was quite different from the more reasonable and quiet days of the past. This is the sign of getting old when you are afraid of the noise. It is the same parable that you looked younger of your age because you ignored any thinking.

Dennis and family were with us and we did our usual tourist thing.

I also came here to finish a dream. My wife wanted to take a ride on the gondola. The 5 of us stepped on the boat after hard negotiation on the price by Dennis with the gondolier. This man was rather fluent in English and he explained to us the different points of interest. Venice is filled with waterways and it will be nice if you have a boat of your own. The nooks and crannies hid some of the beautiful hotels. The quiet water and the architecture formed interesting contrasts under the golden sun. We were going through the back of some of the buildings and the occasional balcony filled with flowers offered this moment of peace and tranquility for you to enjoy. If you talked to the gondolier nicely, he might sing you a song. Let it be a quiet and romantic one. You do not want the quietness to be invaded. Every time you turn the corner there was a new scene in front of you. Some of the waterways are quite narrow and you could literally talk with the people living in the houses. They waved, you waved, “Ciao, Averradecci”,

I came here for a purpose. I wanted to find the spot where James Bond was watching the tape on a boat in “From Russia with Love”. Of course there is no James Bond, but I heard a Charlie Bond was living well here.

Evening approached and it was time for dinner. We were to meet with Eric and Judy (Dennis’ younger brother) for dinner. Maria reserved a table in a close-by restaurant. The seats were lined up by the landing patio of the restaurant. You can watch the water padding the pier while you are eating. When night falls, the candles were lit up and it really looks like you are sitting amongst the stars. It was a wonderful place yet it is just around the corner of a very famous bridge. The food was good and I got intoxicated by the ambience and good company. Viva la Vida!

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