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Venetian Alarm Clock

How do you know when it’s time to get up in Venice? When the gondoliers welcome the morning with opera arias at full voice!

By chance, I’ve rented apartments that had a window on small canals or rios, often used by the gondoliers. The first time the apartment was in San Marco on a very busy rio next to a gondola boarding stop. The singing went on all day, and into the night! The second time I was in the San Polo district (sestiere) in a small studio apartment, believing I was far away from the action, until “O Sole Mio” came blasting into the bedroom around 8:00 a.m. (Okay, I probably sleep in later than I should when in Italy – thanks to late dinners, late night passagiate to walk off the calories,  and midnight espressos to cap off the evening.)

It’s still a bit disorienting to come out of a deep sleep to hear a man’s booming singing voice – at least, for me. I remembered thinking the first time, “What is my husband doing? I’m going to kill him for waking me up!”  Then I realized I was travelling without my husband, and I was in Venice! The anger and disorientation instantly dissolved into a luxurious stretch, a big smile, and gratitude for this one-of-a-kind alarm clock!

Painted from a 2017 family photo, one of those small rio’s where the singing gondoliers were obviously on their break!

#86 – San Marco Canal – sold

2.5″ x 3.5″, ink and watercolour

(Original sold)


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