‘ if you prick us , do we not bleed?’
I came back to visit my native land for all of 24 short hours during a 4 day trip and ended up emotionally confused, Campari drunk and craving Burger King.
Venice for me was like 24 small hours inside the worlds most tragic, broken down amusement park, halfway between a beautiful ancient city and a vastly growing tourist trap. A far cry from the Romantic Venice I had been promised by my friends, So I wasn’t surprised when my ill fated suspicion was confirmed as I noticed the majority of people hanging out in the local Burger King, rather than hanging out over ivy covered balconies, whispering sweet nothing to each other in the moon light.
Smaller than I had imagined and much more derelict than I would of liked it to be. I continued to stay optimistic and hoped something would change. About an hour had past and I was sure I I’d been walking around in circles, I found myself puzzled and feeling less romantic and more sceptical of the city famed for its romantic hallmarks.
After desperately trying to see what William Shakespeare saw in Venice, failing to do so, I found a much more realistic down to earth side instead, hidden well under its theme park surface purely for the overwhelming tourist trade Venice heavily depends on.
Venice’s habitants are no more romantic than anyone else, maybe for the first 20 Minutes of the day, but surely no longer. Their certainly not the typical Shakespearean character, With around only 60,000 people living in the city, the balance between tourism and habitants is a struggle. Visitors want to move quickly in and around the city, yet the notorious slow pace of life here and obvious limited road access prohibits the public from doing so. It’s a constant battle for the city that is sinking inch by inch.
You’ll find the locals in the bars tucked away under the bridges on the lower streets and in the alcoves drinking prosecco out of glass tumblers and smoking roll ups in the early hours of the evening. Then you’ll find the tourist trade on the piazza lined with crisp white table cloths drinking Aperol spritz out of long stemmed, oversized wine glasses, wearing chinos and Bulgari. life in Venice is not as elegant as one may think.
I attempted to find the piazza st Marco and was told by a local it was a 20 minute walk away, much later realising it was a two hour maze. I felt that I had been completely shylocked’ ( yes I did just say that) by the locals advice given to me. In keeping with the theme, I would expect he probably wanted me to give him a pound of my own flesh for the correct information in return.
When I did finally arrive at my planned destination traumatised from the marathon I’d just walked. I was surprisingly underwhelmed by what I’d come face to face with. Buildings that I felt I’d seen in other city’s, the same restaurants and the same souvenir shops. Feeling a little defeated, I retreated to a bar for more Campari, 3 more glasses and I couldn’t take anymore, so I headed to bed ready for my 4am flight the next day. I managed to make it back to the hotel for a much needed sleep without falling in any canal, river, puddle or lake on the way.
bacio bacio april x