Sunday, December 09, 2012

Weird, removed from reality and spooky; indeed, slightly creepy

I've figured it out: Venice is Miss Havisham.

Indeed, if there ever were a place hiding a mad old woman living in a crumbling palace, dressed in motheaten finery, waiting in bitterness for her long lost grandeur to return,

you'd find her in Venice.

I'm home. Somewhat the worse for wear. I spent 12 hours stomping around the weird old place in my big tall black winter boots in the freezing cold on Saturday. My legs, not used to that much punishment (all stone streets, up the bridge stairs, down the bridge stairs, stomp, stomp stomp...) have entirely seized up. Am applying the ancient Grandma solution of a hot-water bottle under the knees.

I can see why people get obsessed with that creepy old place, and can't stop themselves from going back again and again. It's out of my system for now, but I suspect I'll be seized with the urge again at some point. But I can't tell you how good that strangely sterile and crumbling old city makes Rome and Santa Marinella look.

Rome is vibrantly alive. Venice is a ghost.

More later. I'm tired.