My trip to Venice was short (essentially one day) but very sweet. My friends M___ and J___ had been living in Venice since February on an academic mission, and graciously entertained me for the duration of my stay. M___ is a travel writer, so she knows the lay of the land wherever she goes--vaporetti, bacari, and of course dogs selling newspapers. While J___ toiled away during the day, she took me all over Venice via alleys, squares, bridges, and boats. We walked through the big tourist sites, but chose shopping in favor of museums. It was hotter in Europe than I expected, and after wearing the shoes I brought for the wedding for an evening in Paris, it was clear that they would not be comfortable, and the only alternative (10 year old clogs) was in no way stylish enough. But shoes crafted in Venice? A perfect souvenir, and a lifesaver at a wedding that went very, very late. The rest of the shopping included the previously mentioned yarn, and a lot of window shopping for sharp Italian hats. I wish that I lived a lifestyle that would make a Borsalino a practical accessory, but I'm not sure if I can pull off that look here in the Pacific Northwest.
Ah, you want to know about the wine and the food? While we enjoyed a pre-dinner Sicilian Orange (seriously--from Sicily!), there was a short downpour that more or less cleared the streets of tourists and locals alike. We enjoyed a spritz at a bacari alongside the canal, and then went to M___ & J____'s favorite late-night Osteria for an incredibly delicious meal. Beef carpaccio--unbelievable. Lasagna--unbelievable. Stove-top espresso and fresh baked goods for breakfast the next day--unbelievable. Thanks, M___ and J___!
p.s. In case anyone is tired of hearing about my vacation, I think that I only have about two more posts left. Fingers crossed, anyway--I'm feeling less and less like I ever even went on vacation.