Venice, April 2014. Some thoughts ...

Old Apr 5th, 2014, 04:39 PM
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Venice, April 2014. Some thoughts ...

"You don't have to do anything in Venice. It is enough just to be there." Philip Gwynne Jones, "The Venice Project", 2013.

That's all well and good, and first one has to actually get there. So the tickets are bought, an apartment rented, bags half packed, and then in a week, we can be in the happy place of just being there.
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Old Apr 5th, 2014, 05:38 PM
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Half your luck Peter!! Enjoy, enjoy!

Will there be another of your super good Venice trip reports?
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Old Apr 5th, 2014, 07:32 PM
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Peter, I arrive in Venice next Saturday, the 12th. Going to be there for five nights. Would love to meet up with you for an aperitif or lunch!

Just shoot me an email if you're game.
[email protected]

Paula
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Old Apr 7th, 2014, 04:06 AM
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Hi Peter, we will overlap your Venice time too, I believe - we'll be in an apartment owned by a friend of a friend in Castello 29th May to 6th June.

Let's meet up! Caroline has my email info.
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Old Apr 7th, 2014, 12:29 PM
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you're making me jealous.

enjoy your stays in Venice and your GTG too.
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 11:58 AM
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Yes, you have to get there. But that's not really quite true, because "there" is now "here". About 34 hours door to door, Emirates from Melbourne to Dubai, with a couple of hours on the ground in Singapore, five in Dubai (an airport which I find it in myself to really dislike), and then Venice. The usual angst standing by the carousel, wondering how come our first bag has come out, and the second bag is taking ages. One wonders if it is broken zippers, theft, or just bad luck that that bags not made it. That feeling of relief when that bag drops out.

Shared water taxi to Ca' Rezzonico, walk down Calle Lunga San Barnaba, and here we are.

Venice.
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 12:31 PM
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Peter, possibly a dumb question but I'll ask anyway. We'll be in Venice in June with another couple and plan on taking a water taxi from the airport. How many passengers do the taxi's take? Just wondering if it will just be the four of us and the driver/pilot on board.
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 02:40 PM
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Is there a jumble sale going on in Campo San Barnaba?

Did you wave at Stefano behind the counter at Pantagruelica?

Thin
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 11:48 PM
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Cathies, if you use the shared water taxi, there might be eight or nine on board plus driver. The shared taxi costs 25 euro a head. A taxi costs 100 euro, so there is no cost advantage in using the shared taxi, and better fun if there are just the four of you on board.

You can book a taxi at the airport, or just walk down to the dock, ten minutes easy walk. We use an airport baggage trolley for our bags, and you need a 2 euro coin to get one, same as a supermarket trolley in Aus.
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Old Apr 15th, 2014, 11:51 PM
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Thin, no jumble sale - but Campo San Barnaba is full of chairs and tables.

Funny, we have never patronised Pantagruelica, for no good reason. But given that you have, we should at least be giving that establishment a chance.

Does one need to dress?
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Old Apr 16th, 2014, 01:09 AM
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Aaahh Peter!
How wonderful to be back in the pink city!
I hope you'll let us savour your trip vicariously through your usual interesting, off-beat and insightful trip reports.

Can't help but agree about Dubai airport. Not even the dashing Arab men in their whites can make up for the rest of it!

Cathie - you'll have a ball, and couldn't wish you both more. It's been a wild year!
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Old Apr 16th, 2014, 06:35 AM
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I am sure, darling, a Missoni cardi worn with slim pants and Roger Vivier flats would be sufficient for Pantagruelica.

Thin
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Old Apr 16th, 2014, 07:37 AM
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How could you think of yourself as a lover of Venice if you're a slow traveler who has never tried Pantagruelica's fresh basil pesto? What exactly does he do in San Barnaba neighborhood? Maybe Peter should spend more time exploring Venice and less time blogging about it. And, no, you don't need to wear any special clothing to visit. The store is the size of a closet.
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Old Apr 16th, 2014, 10:49 AM
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Alilaguna is the best deal from airport to various destinations in Venice. Check the website - lines from airport to where you need to be - reasonable, better than water taxi. We are in Venice for the past two weeks - wonderful weather!
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Old Apr 16th, 2014, 01:44 PM
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Now, Snobby, you know that Australians are very rugged, very outdoorsy and Peter and Lou kayak around Venice.

I have seen kayakers around San Pietro Church near Arsenale and it looks like fun.

Not everyone can sit at Quadri all afternoon reading articles in Hello Magazine about Princess Michael.

Thin
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Old Apr 17th, 2014, 05:52 AM
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"you know that Australians are very rugged"

Sure didn't seem that way in Priscilla, Queen of the Desert.

"very outdoorsy…kayak around Venice."

I think I'll pass. If I step into a boat, there better be a drop-dead gorgeous Italian man on board holding his oar.

"Not everyone can sit at Quadri all afternoon"

I'm so sorry to hear that.

PS Happy to see you in good humor, Thin.
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Old Apr 17th, 2014, 06:53 AM
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Jet lag can work in your favour. Eight hours time difference can be good. It means that you an see a little of Venice in the very early morning, when the city is coming alive. Mixing it with the street sweepers, getting in the first coffee before the crowds come. So we've done a bit of that, generally getting organised, stocking the larder, getting the phones working. Running into a couple of friends, purely by chance.

Also, purely by chance, seeing a boy in school uniform in Campo San Barnaba. A school about two kilometres from our home in Melbourne, actually the school that Lou's daughter attended. He was a member of the school choir and chamber orchestra, on their European tour. They gave a concert in San Salvatore last night and it was excellent, especially taking into account that the age range of the performers, about 13 to 16 years old. A lot of talent there.

Next few stops for them are Salzburg, Vienna and Linz, quite a busy agenda. But first they had to get to Mestre, all sixty of them, where they were staying. Getting the choir and orchestra plus instruments onto a vaporetto bound for Tronchetto and their bus, quite a challenge. I felt sorry for the double bass player, a big instrument, even bigger in its carry case. Even harder because the carry case had lost one of its wheels. Near impossible, given the crowds on the No 2 vap, but I guess they made it. Note to self - never complain about large luggage on a vaporetto.

Fun to hear "Waltzing Matilda" in Venice.


We shared our flight from Dubai to Venice with a fourty-strong girls choir, also from Aus. Interesting to see teenaged girls reading music scores instead of trashy mags, singing short passages when they got a bit bored, and airports can be really boring. They stayed in their seats when we arrived at Marco Polo, and serenaded we other passengers off the aircraft.

The vegetable boat at San Barnaba trades well, particularly as the grumpy pair of gentlemen who ran it previously have moved on, replaced with a pair of pleasant blokes. We bought a bunch of agretti, a vegetable that looks a little like chives, like a round stemmed grass. It a sort of marsh grass, a bit salty and tasting, more than anything, like the sea. Great with scallops. Agretti is said to be one of the oldest cultivated vegetables, and we never see it in Aus.

We are following Phil's advice. You don't have to do anything in Venice, you just have to be there. But even things that don't count as "doing" are fun, like taking a traghetto across the Grand Canal, or buying a leg of lamb at the Rialto.
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Old Apr 17th, 2014, 12:46 PM
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We bought a bunch of agretti, a vegetable that looks a little like chives, like a round stemmed grass. It a sort of marsh grass, a bit salty and tasting, more than anything, like the sea. >>

I saw that in the Rialto market, Peter, when we were last there shopping for Easter lamb and wondered what it was. I'd like to think that my italian is now good enough to ask the question and even to understand the answer! [well, I can dream!].

we have a rough equivalent here in Cornwall called marsh samphire - it grows in brackish water, and is salty. Very good with fish, scallops, etc. you steam it and then serve it as a veg or with drawn butter.

enjoy your lamb. the butcher threw in a large sprig of rosemary with ours, which you don't get here. we also got some peas and potatoes, and were surprised and pleased to be asked if we wanted ones for boiling [no] or roasting [yes]. Again not something that happens at home.
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Old Apr 17th, 2014, 12:53 PM
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Thanks for the info Peter, the water taxi into Venice has been on my wish list for ages and I am looking forward to it,

Yes, Bokhara, it has been a very wild year! We really are looking forward to this trip. We have 10 nights in Scotland, three in Venice, two in Trieste staying with an Australian friend who owns a villa there, then 6 nights in Rome. I'm looking forward to returning to Venice which we loved last time.

I will remember to pack my missoni scarf Thin. Thanks for mentioning them, although by early June I may not need it.
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Old Apr 18th, 2014, 11:48 AM
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Sorry I missed you, Peter. Ironically, I spent the better part of Monday afternoon (15th) in and near San Barnaba!

I was on the hunt for my "Summertime" locations and was very successful. I considered stopping in to the DaVinci exhibit at the church, but it was so nice and sunny out, I decided against it.

(Wasn't it you who turned me on to the website [A Lover of Venice]?)

Imagine my delight when I guessed at the location of the Piscina Sant'Agnese and came around the corner from the exact camera angle when we first see Kate there at the cistern!

Also very happy to find the San Cristoforo bridge, etc.

We may have passed on the street!

I hope you have warmer weather and a great stay!
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