Rain rolled in overnight, and I woke to thunder and winds blowing in my window–a welcome freshness that lasted until the evening.
Last night I had a lovely meet up with contributors to the forthcoming book, First Spritz Is Free: Confessions of Venice Addicts. We gathered at Taverna Remer, which has one of the best Grand Canal views of any bar in Venice.
The jeweler Marisa Convento and the chef and guide Monica Cesarato had arrived just before me, and we started with a round of spritz. Quite soon, Luisella Romeo, the queen of Venetian guides according to Monica, arrived to join us. She carried an artichoke flower she had gotten on the island of Sant’Erasmo where she took clients today.
I have not met many of the contributors to First Spritz, though we’ve been emailing each other for some months now. But as Venice is a small and often insular world, many of them had met each other before. We had a few minutes to get acquainted before the next two people arrived: Monica Daniele, who runs a shop selling traditional cloaks (tabarri) and hats, and Albert Gardin, translator and the next Doge of Venice (see my previous blog on that topic). The table grew even livelier, and drinks arrived for the newcomers.
Finally, Gregory Dowling showed up, claiming he had been waylaid by a rubbish issue. Albert regaled us with a recitation of The Iliad in Venetian, as translated by Giacomo Casanova, which Albert had published.
But alas, our time was short, as folks had other commitments to head off to. We moved out to the campiello, where the air was fresh, the tide was high, and some men at the pier were threatening to fight! We managed to take this group shot together before we dispersed.
I look forward to the First Spritz meet up in the San Francisco Bay Area next. If anyone wants to buy my plane ticket to Boston, we can have one there, too, as a number of the contributors are from that area. 🙂
Keep watching this space for the ebook! It should be available in the next week.