Hanging round, Saint Mark’s by ourselves…
We didn’t have much planned for today, just checking out the attractions around Saint Mark’s Square and wandering the alleys.
We didn’t see much of note, but we did see a lot of really interesting Venetian masks. As much as we would have liked to buy a few, we had heard that there are a ton of overpriced fakes out there and opted not to buy anything that expensive without having done a little bit of research first.
We did, however, find the abode of Lucius Vorenus’ most impressive conquest.
When we were first looking at reviews for hotels and were trying to decide between a hotel on the lagoon and one on a canal, we were turned off by the reports of mosquitoes and humidity by the lagoon.
Honestly, it’s Italy in the summer. There’s no escaping either. Or the crowds.
Venetian shopkeepers don’t like people taking pictures of their wares.
That’s OK though. High fashion is literal shit anyway.
Saint Mark’s Square
It was in Saint Mark’s Square that we discovered the joys of Crema Doge.
All Crema Doge was is cream soda-flavored gelato, and surprisingly delicious on a hot summer day.
Hanging out in St. Mark’s Square, we had some Doge Cream and shared a romantic hour watching retards frolic with pigeons. People actually feed these things and let these shit-and-disease-carrying rats of the sky roost on their bodies.
Probably the same demographic who considers sharing needles thrill-seeking behavior, but I digress.
Even Pope Borgia recognized them as the pestilence they are but failed to eradicate the pigeons. He should have addressed the source of the problem and eradicated the peasants instead.
But I digress further. I’m just avoiding addressing the fact that we have a personal stake in the matter in that as we were trying to enjoy ourselves, a pigeon shat all over both of us from above.
Saint Mark’s Basilica
We didn’t make it into to the basilica to see inside but that’s OK. Once you’ve seen St. Peter’s you’ve seen the big one anyway.
The spiritual significance of these places always gets drowned out by the crowds and noise anyway. We had more enlightening experiences at the local Hindu temple.
Saint Mark’s Campanile
We did go up the bell tower at sunset though, which was a lot more romantic than yet another overcrowded church.
If you have sensitive hearing or startle easily, be mindful about going to the top of a bell tower. It’s active, and it’s loud.
Assault and Battery
We get that some cultures have very different ideas of what constitutes “personal space” than Americans are accustomed to. We’ve been packed onto trains in Japan and Korea, so we can handle being in close proximity with strangers.
But there comes a point when, in a wide open boulevard, someone closes directly in on you to within kissing distance that necessitates some distinct lines being drawn.
After being accosted by flower and souvenir vendors all day we started getting aggressive right back. They didn’t seem to respond to shouting and gesturing, so when another one tried to shove a rose in my wife’s face, she reacted before I did and smacked it right out of his hand. They say never commit battery in a foreign country but the look on his face was priceless.
Still later that night, another peddler tried to give us flowers. He insisted they were free. In retrospect he was just trying to dump his stock from that day but the look on his face at our refusal was equally priceless.