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Thursday night (Giotto!)

So it is about 11 pm and I'm sitting here in the Locanda lounge watching the water seep in through the water door as I type this. The Acqua Alta Chime Alarms went off around 7:15 tonight, and the water is rising and will peak soon. It will go back down tonight and then come back in the morning and then, the folks here tell me, we will be done with it. No high water forecast for this weekend when I have to head home, thank goodness.

The water was not as high this morning as it was yesterday, and I had no trouble getting to the train station to head to Padova, even though I had to walk through some ankle-high water in a few places. My friend Cristiano went with me, and we had such a nice day even though it rained all day long, very hard at times, and I ended up looking and feeling like a drowned rat by the time we got back to Venice late this afternoon. Seriously, I feel mildewed!

The Scrovegni Chapel was quite an experience. What an ordeal to visit that place. You have to book your ticket at least 24 hours in advance for an exact time, and you must arrive an hour before your reservation. There are all these funky air lock things you walk through to get to the chapel and then you have to sit in this decontamination chamber thingy for 15 minutes before they let you in (they show a film about the history of the chapel while you are getting aerated or whatever). They only let 25 people in at a time, and they only let you stay for 15 minutes.

But the Chapel is truly one of the most amazing things I have ever seen, right up there with the Sistine Chapel. The Giotto frescoes are absolutely gorgeous and mindblowing. SandraC, i have to borrow your great word....I was gobsmacked. Truly worth all the effort! And even better, there were only two other people in there with Cristiano and me during our 15 minutes, and that was wonderful because it is such a small place. After we left, we had lunch and spent another couple of hours walking around the historic center of Padova. A nice city. I wouldn't mind spending more time there.

So tonight after dinner, I was walking home from dinner in Cannaregio, and this journalist from Rome carrying all this video equipment stopped me and said, Which way is San Marco? I told him I was going that way so we walked together. He had come to film the high water. The piazza was completely filled and that was about an hour ago.

Various and sundry....

Maria, while looking for something else, I stumbled across the icon shop you told me about. What a beautiful place! I'm going back tomorrow...there were several things there that I want to buy.

Kathy, I popped into Bar di Gino a couple of days ago and met the Cafe Girls. You are so right, that is a great place and those folks are so nice! I had a spritz and some chips and rested my feet for a while. Wonderful bar.

Shannon, I had dinner in Osteria al Garanghelo the other night and really enjoyed talking to the nice couple who own it. Annalisa very proudly told me, "We are in Chow Venice and in Fodors." (!) And Renato showed me his scrapbook with all these postcards from customers from all over the world, so when I get home I'm going to send him one from NC. Great place.

Girasoli, I know you are a tower person and I forgot to tell you that the Torcello tower was closed for restoration. I wanted to climb it again, oh well. I hope that it will be open again next time you come to Venice.

This is without a doubt the worst weather I have ever experienced in Venice, but hey....it's still Venice and I'm having a great time! Thanks for all the comments everyone!

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Comments (8)

jgk:

Just wanted to say "ciao"
I'm loving your blog!

I was entranced by the pews at the Scrovegni Chapel. All of the wear and how the wood was worn down...I kept picturing people in them.

The Chapel is truly amazing. I'm glad you made it there despite the rain and water!

I'm enjoying reading about all of your excursions...thanks for posting!

Kathy (Trekcapri):

Hi Annie, great to hear from you and know that the waters weren't as high this morning and you and your friend were able to travel to Padua and have a nice visit there. I think the Sistine Chapel is an amazing piece of art so if these frescos are on that same level it must have been incredible to see them in person.

Thanks for telling me that you stopped in to Bar di Gino. Very cool!

Great news that the weather will be better this weekend for you. Whoo hoo!

Keep on having a wonderful time Annie!

sandrac:

Oh Annie, I'm so envious. I'd love to see the Scrovegni Chapel and the Giottos -- they sound spectacular (gobsmacking, indeed!)

But what a production to get in to see them! I had heard there was a bit of a to-do to enter, but what you've described is amazing. Sounds like I had better get to see them soon, while it's still possible!

I'm sorry your trip has been so water-logged. Yet it sounds as if you've had a wonderful time, with some fantastic experiences! And I can't wait to see the photos.

Hi Annie, how exciting that you went to see the Giotto frescoes!! I spent a few days in Padova in 2000 or 2001 (forget now). I loved the town. The Giotto frescoes were unfortunately closed for renovation. I guess there is always something being renovated.

Thanks for letting me know about the tower in Torcello. Too bad it was closed. If you get the chance, the clock tower tour is pretty cool. You also get free admission to the Correr Museum with the the clock tower booking. You do need to reserve in advance but the hotel might be able to help you.

I am glad that the acqua alta will be over soon and will not affect you when you have to leave. We had some wild acqua alta here in Hawaii today. I thought of you.

Have a wonderful day tomorrow!!

Anne:

I am seriously envious that you got to see the Scrovegni frescoes! I really want to see them...sigh, next trip perhaps. I need months and years to see all the places in Italy that strike my fancy. I'm so enjoying catching up on your travels!

I'm thrilled to read that you made it to Padova. I'm so envious that you got to see the Giotto frescoes. I visited Padova for three days back in October, 2001. The chapel was under renovation so I spent my time in the Basilica di Sant'Antonio where I saw the saint's relics -- his uncorrupted tongue and his jaw bone.

I see that you came across the icon shop. Did you come home with an icon or memento from the studio?

Maria, unfortunately when I returned to the icon shop the next day, they had closed for lunch. I planned to go back later and then got busy with other things. It's on my list for next time, for sure!

I went to the Basilica di Sant' Antonio on my first trip to Italy and would love to go back to that church.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on December 11, 2008 4:56 PM.

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