The GoGlobal Blog

my heart resides in Venice

my heart resides in Venice

The train quickly backed out of the St. Lucia station leaving behind an amazing city, heavenly gelato, divine cornetti cioccolati, and, most importantly, my heart.  For years, I had watched movies and television shows with scenes of Venice and had felt an urge to see it myself.  Though I acknowledged that I wanted to go to Venice, I just figured that this feeling was a desire to travel and explore every bit of Earth that I could.  Instead, the second I stepped on Venetian ground, two days earlier, I felt strangely at home.  I smiled and took a deep breath of the slightly fishy smelling air.

Venice is a maze.  Each turn you take leads you to some little shop or bridge, each fascinating and wonderful.  The best part is, you don’t need a map.  The city is small enough that everything is in walking distance, so long as you ditch the Italian high heels and go for actual walking shoes.  Even when you think you are lost, and utter a hopeless “mamma mia,” you turn a corner and suddenly find yourself at the Rialto Bridge, at the edge of St. Mark’s square, or at an amazing gelateria.  Another wonderful thing about Venice is that there are no cars.  In Rome, every time you cross the street you get a sense that this could be your last moment.  But, in Venice, the only thing you have to worry about is getting so caught up in the city’s beauty that you accidentally fall into a canal.

If you are a shopaholic, don’t worry, Venice has plenty of shops.  St. Mark’s square is surrounded by high-end clothing and jewelry shops; it is a couture fortress.  If you are, on the other hand, more like me and find those shops just a wee bit out of your price range, there are plenty of amazing shops all around the city.  There is a plethora of clothing, shoe, purse, and fabric shops.  Even more shops, though, are dedicated to masks.  Home of Carnivale, Venice is known for its elaborate paper mache masks.  It seemed that every store was bursting at the seams with masks.  They lined doorframes, were displayed in windows, and tacked collage-like to walls.  I felt like I was in the masquerade scene of The Phantom of the Opera.

There is something about Venice that makes me long to return.  It might be how each tiny canal and ornate bridge feels as if they are secret passages.  Or, it may be the way sitting at an outdoor café in St. Mark’s square, listening to the gorgeous sounds of a classical jazz band, makes me feel completely relaxed.  Or, it could be the sense of happy isolation the city permeates by being alone in the sea, with narrow alleys that seem like no one has ever walked down.  It could be one of these things, but it is not: it is all of these things.  Venice has stolen a piece of my heart.

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