No Longer Solo in the City of Romance - Venice, Italy one year later

"Henry James wrote in a novella that Venice is like an interior: an apartment consisting of corridors and drawing-rooms. You're always walking inside it, you're never really outside it. The outside doesn't exist, even in the street. Apparently (which is to say: maskedly) the Venetian passion for the mask was born from this need to be incognito, to protect your identity. Because this is a city where public life forces you to drag your character on the surface of your skin, to transfer it permanently from your soul to your face. You too become a character, vaguely puppet-like, a stylised form of yourself." - Tiziano Scarpa

One year ago, Venice was an enchanting stranger, testing my purpose and patience. Everything was a mystery and I craved information. I was in awe  of this floating metropolis and needed to examine it, piece by piece.

This year, I don't question how the same calle can go from overwhelmingly noisy to deafeningly silent. I don't ask why we take the vaporetto over the traghetti or which is faster. I never contemplate how many cathedrals were built as a result of the plague or why it doesn't change the way I pray in them. I do, however, ask how many falling flower pots have killed humans, but seriously, who wouldn't ask that?

This year, Venice is a handwritten sign in the airport. It's aperitivo on a docked boat. It's a trip to the market after Prosecco. It's a home cooked meal after the city has gone to sleep. It's a 40 minute boat ride only to buy lace. It's enjoying the warmth of the  sun when a cathedral is closed. It's a carton of fresh strawberries next to Accademia bridge. It's your history lessons. It's language charades. It's the breaks from you. It's the breaks from me. It's the needing each other back. It's your talk radio and your huge books. It's the glasses you never really lose. It's 1 bowl in the cupboard. It's dessert before dinner. It's traveling to find the perfect cookie. It's being lazy without feeling like time is being wasted. It's ancient locks and keys that turn far too many times. It's your need to write to the local paper. It's a piece of my journal. It's the accordian player outside of your window. It's your work suit. 

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For me, Venice will always be you.