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Stop #14: Venice, Italy

By David Morris

Venice, Italy

I think, with the exception of Hamburg, Venice has to be one of the most beautiful cities we have visited.  The combination of canals and narrow alleys with the wide range of stores and vendors in the larger squares, make for a truly relaxing environment.

From the ship, this tour was only on a boat that drove around many of the islands that make up Venice.  As it turns out, a lot of the islands are specialized.  For example, there is an island dedicated to the manufacturing of glassware, which is very elaborate here in Venice. It is called Murano glass.  There is an island for farming a lot of the local food.  One is now a cemetery.  One is a resort only for Armenians. Etc, etc.

The main tourist point is known as St. Mark Square.  I have both day and night pictures of that area.  When I went back there that night, they had three different small orchestral groups playing different songs, opera and the like, it was quite lovely.

As it turns out, St. Mark’s Square is now home to the remains of the apostle Mark.  I don’t know the origin but he is symbolized by a lion with wings.  Three other apostles have symbolic representations as well: John as an eagle, Luke as a bull, and Matthew as a man.  Throughout Venice you can see carvings of lions with wings and you know they are a representation of the apostle Mark.

Also, Venice was home to the ancient explorer Marco Polo.  When he traveled to Asia, he brought many exotic goods that became integrated into Venetian and Italian culture: pasta, silk, and many others.  One that interested me was an architectural design of pointed arches.  Many of the older buildings have these distinctive arches with points. You can see some of them in my pictures as well.  Jarrad and I think they resemble the spade on a deck of cards.

I really thought the iron work they used to secure ground floor windows were quite exotic. I took several pictures of them as well.

I also acquired the last possible pilzner form the Hard Rock Cafe here and it turns out that one just opened several months before we arrived.  So just in time.

Anyway, enjoy Venice…

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