|This image from two years ago gives some idea of the limitations of our makeshift mototopo|
I'm afraid I haven't been able to keep up with blogging in recent days because we've been in the process of moving, from the apartment we've lived in at the eastern edge of Venice for all of our 6 years here to a larger apartment not far from the Rialto Market. It's a move from an area of few tourists to an area of many more, yet in the minds of most people we have finally moved to the "real" Venice. The Venice people picture when they think of Venice.
Is it the "real" Venice? It certainly looks like it, and I suppose some people might claim that in Venice of all places looks are really all that matters. But just how "real" it is, and what that curious and usually unreliable (if not outright fraudulent) term might mean is something we'll have to find out.
Our move is actually ongoing, as our contract in our old apartment is also, alas, ongoing for a time, so there was no great single moving day. And as we're moving from one furnished apartment to another we haven't had to worry about all the big items often involved in a move. So we haven't rented or hired a mototopo or large work boat to make our move--as is typical here--but relied so far on our small sandolo sanpierota and its 6 horsepower outboard motor.
Our son, Sandro, needless to say, was disappointed that we didn't at least rent a patana--a medium-sized work boat almost exclusively made of fiberglass these days. But moving is moving, and as he still dreams of founding his own traslochi (moving, transportation) company one day, any disappointment was soon displaced by logistical considerations (pondered in great detail) and action. There was work to be done, and work that required the use of his own personal hand truck or trolley. His birthday present of 3 years ago that he's used so much that one of its rubber tires is disintegrating and needs replacing.
In any case, on a cold first day of December Sandro and I slowly motored a boatload of large, heavy suitcases and boxes from the edge of Venice to its historic center. A journey which, on land and in an automobile, or even in a boat with a decent-sized motor, is of truly negligible distance. But which here in Venice ended up being one of no less than 400 years: from the 20th-century apartment house we'd been living in for the last 6 years to a 16th-century palazzo, one of whose apartments we're now trying to make into our home. Suffice it to say for now that the 20th century is generally warmer....