Note: This blog post was written last November 7 while I was on a train en route to Florence. Thank god for trains! Here in Manila, when I have to go on roadtrips, I need to stay awake as Ponggo’s navigator / driver but for a change, you will find me sitting down, staring into space, emptying my mind and enjoying the view while I’m on the train.
And yes, If you’ve noticed, I’ve been jumping from one city to another to the point that I’ve already blogged about Burano, Naples & Iceland in between. *Woops*
When I was in Naples, after being a shutterbug for so many days, I miss being able to do hand-lettered work. Then I just thought how refreshing it would be if I asked a fellow artist to put quotes on my work travel photos. I sent Ella Lama some photos. I didn’t even give her a background of what I was doing or feeling at that time but the quotes just seemed to fall into place.
November 7, 2014
I was supposed to leave for Florence at an earlier time but I thought I still haven’t gone around to take photos of the main island in Venice so I decided to go back.
Today was a bit more challenging. I was trying to fix some things happening from halfway around the world. Comments were being carelessly thrown at my country online. Furious friends and readers were making my social networking accounts and chat apps redder by the minute–so was my temper.
I’m probably the least confrontational person you will meet. I will still give you a sheepish smile even if I’m dying inside or so cynical of the words you utter. It usually takes me years to tackle and face things in the hopes that by then, the emotions would have gone stale.
Then again, if there’s one thing I have learned, it’s that when you’re travelling alone, you really have no space for any negative energy. You don’t even have space to get mad at others or yourself. So, I finally resolved some issues that morning but the weather clearly reflected how I felt. Venice was foggy and my mind was clouded.
I was so distracted that I didn’t even feel that my camera wasn’t locked to my strap. It fell and my filter cracked–it also made a dent on my lens. *Woops!* The day was indeed testing me. When I checked my leather bag, I unknowingly crushed my thin mineral water bottle. It cracked and my entire bag was soaked. When I finally finished cleaning my bag, I grabbed my croissant (my usual breakfast) along the way and I ended up spilling some chocolate on my hands. At this point though, I chuckled. Now I think maybe Murphy’s law doesn’t really exist. Maybe funny things just happen when half of your brain is too disturbed to function. In essence, I was the clumsy girl in Venice.
My trip to Venice was quick. It was also a bit humbling. I’m always quick to dismiss that “I’ve already seen that. I want go see something else” since I was on this island five years ago but I was wrong. Things have changed since then and everywhere I look, I notice a new detail & I finally realized how big this cluster of islands is!
Venice was still foggy and so I tried taking pictures of subjects that were near me instead.
Since you know I have this thing about colors, I love observing the general color scheme of a city or nation. I noticed that most of my photos from Italian cities are orangey the same way my photos from Iceland are bluish and those from France, sandy. I guess it always reflects what building material was abundant during the time the city was constructed.
Then, just like that, the sun showed itself as if reminding me that the thoughts that have burdened me in the morning have disappeared.
Above: I think I finally found a home in Venice. This was my favorite thing to do during the entire trip. I’d look for potential homes in cities I visited. Please say hello to my pet seagull!
Below: Looks like a random shot but I tried my hand at taking photos of birds in flight. I ended up getting OC just because I wanted my subject to be flying below the huge clock. Now it lacks depth and blends against the wall. Oh well. Haha.
Above: What I was so tempted to do near the Bridge of Sighs since I was alone most of the time. Then, it dawned upon me. Maybe these days, it doesn’t really matter that I’m in the picture to prove that I was there. Perhaps, a vivid memory and a bunch of photos of what I saw are enough to remind myself of my journey. Well, of course, I DID have photos of me awkwardly posing somewhere but they’re nowhere near fashion blogger quality and I am not one so let’s just keep those in my personal Facebook account.
Above: I’m so in awe by the amount of detail of all these structures. I was thinking, “So, this is what people would have done if they weren’t so busy with Facebook or Instagram.”
Above: You will see mask souvenirs as a reminder of the Carnival of Venice (Carnevale di Venezia) where people wore masks in the 17th century as a part of their annual festival.
Upon leaving Venice, I went back to Vicenza and grateful for how charming and lovely that little town was. My place in the Philippines is beside the main road so I really appreciate more silent areas. I took my luggage with me and the day continued to test me. I accidentally hit my knee while I was dragging some 25 kilos. Yeouch! But, actually, I was in a dilemma. I didn’t know if I’m supposed to feel the pain first or if I should feel if my knee cap is intact first. Luckily, it’s just a bruise out of my clumsiness. Whew!
Well, I already knew that a backpack would be optimal for cobble stones but I just can’t cut down on thick clothes since Iceland will be one of our stops in this trip.
Upon arriving in Florence, I took my time to sit down and have a meal at the train station consciously avoiding choices like McDonald’s or else Ponggo will tease me for life for having fast food in a place where I’m supposed to try local food.
I bought my bus ticket at the cigarette stand and boarded bus 17 not knowing that it was actually going the other way. The bus driver was kind enough to let me sit through the next route. I finally arrived in my hostel (and realized the next day that I should have taken bus 11!). Events like these just validate the observation shared by fellow travelers that not a lot of Italians may speak a lot of English but they make gestures and they always get out of their way (sometimes literally) to help you get to where you need to go.
I finally arrived at my hostel upon spotting the huge Ostello sign. Ostello Villa Camerata is a villa turned into a hostel also under the Hostelling International group. Therefore, it has a huge camping ground in front of it and a 300m uphill path. I finally arrived at the reception happy to greet Suzana who has already contacted me the other night. She welcomed me as if I was family and I felt like I just came home. I slept in my room ready for another adventure again the next day.
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