Back in 2009, we went to Italy in February. One of our stops was Venice, where we had a fabulous suite at the Hotel Monaco & Grand Canal, overlooking the gondola dock right next to San Marco Square.
I was enchanted by the Murano glass chandeliers throughout the suite.
Being a not-very-seasoned world traveler at the time, I had no clue that it was Carnival until I saw the costumed people posing around San Marco Square. What a spectacle!
It was pretty surreal, walking among all the costumed, masked people who were out there posing for photos, never ever saying a word. I kept wondering – are they real people? It was almost creepy.
And February was not the best weather – it was rainy and very cold. I had to buy a leather coat and boots in Rome, just to have something warm to wear. Back then, I wasn’t sure about the stylishness of the boots – Mark said they were Gestapo boots. Now, everybody has them. But how many people can say they bought theirs in a little shop in Rome?
When we decided to live in the Middle East, we were determined to take a trip to Italy while we were over there – in our minds it was closer than it was in reality. Some time when the weather would be warmer, we thought, and things would be blooming. But it didn’t happen.
There is hope. We have our Italian sailing friends who we met in Abu Dhabi; they go back home to Italy – Marco is from Tuscany, Paolo from Torino, and Emiliano from Mantua – which is halfway between Milan and Venice. I’ll dream of reuniting with them in Italy.
Meanwhile, happy Fat Tuesday and Carnevale, wherever you may be.