Sunday, 25 August 2013

An afternoon on the Grand Canal

After a voyage to Torcello this morning, Jean and I sailed back to Venice, docking at Fondamente Nova.  From there, we decided to make our way to the Grand Canal by the shortest route, and catch a vaporetto back to St Marks Square, just for the hell of it.  Instead of using the map, we thought it best to head generally straight ahead, and, sooner or later, we would hit the Grand Canal somewhere.

Soon, we encountered the Strada Nova, the street we were on last night when we were looking for dinner.  We had a cappuccino and a caffe latte, which came to 9 €, quite expensive compared to other Italian cities.  A stone's throw from there is the Grand Canal.  

Also very close by is the Venice Casino which we were looking for last night.  Entry into the casino requires smart pants and a jacket, which we didn't have.  I was surprised, last night, to also find that the casino premises is the very place where Richard Wagner died in 1883.  A plaque states that Wagner 'died within these walls on 13 February 1883'.  I may have previously known, vaguely, that Wagner had died in Venice.  I'm not sure.  Wagner is connected to my family history, hence my interest.  There is also, facing the Grand Canal, an image of Wagner on a wall.  I learned there is an Association of Richard Wagner of Venice as well as a 'European Study & Research Centre Richard Wagner'.  Somewhere within the casino, apparently, is the Richard Wagner Museum and Richard Wagner Rooms.  You can only visit these 'exclusively on reservation', but not during holidays or in August when they're closed.  So bad luck.  There is also a Richard Wagner Cafe on the premises, but, incredibly, you need to wear very smart clothing to visit it.  I will just have to visit Venice again at a different time of year with more formal attire.  (Nearby is Venice's Jewish quarter - I wondered what the Jewish community's feelings would be about the level of reverence for such an anti-semite as Wagner.)

We caught the vaporetto to St Marks Square, where we strolled around a while, and had gelati.  Then we caught another vaporetto home.
The Rialto Bridge in Venice
Church opposite St Marks Square
Gondolas are part of the furniture in Venice
The Rialto Bridge is just coming into view above the boat in the middle of the Grand Canal.
Wagner's image on the Grand Canal
Plaque announcing Wagner died 'within these walls' 13 February 1883

No comments:

Post a Comment