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Trip Report I Go to Pieces — An Italy Trip Report

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I Go to Pieces — An Italy Trip Report

26 February–11 March 2014

BACKGROUND

My previous Italy trip report from 2011 included a week in Venice, followed by time in Florence and Siena. (Click on my screen name to read "How Do You Know They Are Not Killers?")

Soon after that trip, I took a new job, which left me disoriented, challenged, and exhausted. I loved the job — and still do — but so much was new to me in those first months. I returned to Venice in 2012 and 2013 because it was an easy choice, a perfect break from my busy job that would require little planning on my part. My two visits in early March were just what I needed, a quiet week just after Carnevale to ride boats, take long walks, climb bridges, and have nice meals. No big experiences or information to share in a trip report, just relaxation in one of my favorite places.

A March vacation fits perfectly into my work schedule, and I love the less tourist-filled time. Yes, the weather might be cold or rainy, but I’m in Italy and there’s always a bar or cafe or church nearby to get out of the weather and relax.

As Christmas 2013 approached, with work going full tilt, I began to consider my vacation for March 2014. Should I return to Venice? Should I try something new? Mentally I reviewed the map of Italy in my brain, moving south from Venice, thinking about where I might go. Bologna was already on my mind, since my last visit there had been many years ago. My thoughts jumped to Ravenna, the city of mosaics that I had visited once as a day trip from Bologna and once as a two-night stop. From the recesses of my Ravenna memory flashed an image of a storefront I had passed, with people inside the shop creating mosaics. Mosaic school!

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