August 9, 2011

Venice, Italy. September, 1986

There’s one thing you can count on in Venice...nothing. It’s a city that constantly surprises. From the very first minute you step out of the train station and find yourself confronted with the water and boats just a few steps away. Vincent Price once told me, “Venice isn’t really in Italy. It’s a planet all to itself.” Yes. It’s a place made for walking, for getting lost, for discoveries. Take this photo, for example. I was wandering alone through narrow alleyways, around corners, down deserted paths, and then this...a canal, a gondola, a wedding. Around another corner, the fabled Teatro La Fenice (itself a phoenix, having been rebuilt three times after hugely destructive fires, most recently in 1996) where I bought a ticket to a concert featuring a composer unknown to me, Ciakovsky. (It was only when the lights went down and the music began did I realize it was Tchaikovsky!) I’ve been here three times now, each more magical than the last. Ask around about Venice. Some people decry it as overrun with tourists and Disney-fied to an irritating degree. Others are enchanted by its quiet magic, its seductive shadows and reflections. I’m squarely in the latter camp.

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