Saturday, December 15, 2007

Venice: The Four Seasons by Lisa St Aubin de Teran

I've got out my precious copy of Venice: The Four Seasons by one of my favorite authors, Lisa St Aubin de Teran. I always seem to read it again in the weeks preceding a trip to Venice.

It's about the years she spent there with her family, from 1988. They bought an apartment in my favorite area, Castello, next to my favorite square, Campo Santa Maria Formosa. As her young son, Alessandro (what a coincidence) started school there, it's likely that the nearby convent he attended was the very one that now invites in guests; it is also now run as a small hotel.

Her personal descriptions of Venice are unmatched, in my opinion.

The gliding gondola, the wobbling traghetti, the vaporetti, the motor boats of friends, the patched and sometimes leaking rowing boats of others are all fragments of the kaleidoscope glass I love. Even waiting for the water buses, feeling the slap of water under the rotting boards of the vaporetti stops fills me with a sense of contentment. Whether it is the contentment of being in Venice or a natural love of the water I cannot tell, and it doesn't matter. On the Canalazzo the sun dapples and silvers the surface, flickering like a stall of fish either throwing back or swallowing up the reflections of the buildings as we pass.

As I read, I become even more enthused about Campo Santa Maria Formosa. I have an aim for this upcoming time in Venice. I am going to spend as much time as I can in this square and the calle surrounding it. We all have our areas of Venice. I have a feeling that this might be mine.


Campo Santa Maria Formosa cat

1 comment:

kathy said...

I came across your blog after "googling" Certaldo--a town I am thinking of visiting this summer. I lived in Japan 20 years ago and it is my Japanese town's sister city. Just wanted to let you know I LOVE this snapshot!

Kathy-Edmonton Canada