Venezia took my breath away

Springtime in Venice
Springtime in Venice

This was my first visit to Venice. By the time I actually stepped foot in Venice I had already been in Italy for well more than a week and had seen all sorts of really wonderful sights. I’m thinking that Venice really took my breath away because I had heard about it’s wonders all my life. I still remember my teacher Mrs. Wiebenson at  Graland Country Day School who extolled the virtues and wonders of not only Venice but all the wonderful places all over the world. So when I stepped off the train and then crossed the first bridge into the city of Venice just the realization that I had finally made it there did indeed take my breath away. What an amazing experience!!

Amazing Venice
Amazing Venice

In my opinion Venice is everything I ever heard it was and so much more.

What I hadn’t heard and certainly couldn’t appreciate until now that I have actually traversed the streets, and quite a few of them more than once is that you can easily get lost there, even with a map.

Colorful Waterways of Venice
Colorful Waterways of Venice


At more than one juncture when I was thinking I was hopelessly lost in and amongst the streets of Venice some young person admonishing another with “Just follow the signs and you’ll be fine.”

I suppose that that’s all good an well if you speak Italian or if you have a great map.


All of that aside, being a little lost or disoriented in Venice isn’t a hugely bad thing because around every corner, or down yet another canal is a new find.

Every alleyway was replete with another experience. The art was fabulous, the myriad of gastronomical aromas was enticing and certainly challenging for a guy who has lost a total of 105 pounds in the past year.

Art Venice Styled
Art Venice Styled

This picture of the pasta is here especially for my good friend Barbara from Lubec, Maine who has a passion for good pasta among other things.

Italy is bountiful with all sorts of tasty things to eat and drink. I rather like the Limoncello. Just about everywhere in Italy I have been there are all sorts of Lemon Trees with great big lemons ripe and ready.

St Marks
St Marks

When I was in Edinburgh I actually fell off the sidewalk twice because I was in such awe of the architecture. Since then I try to stand at least a little stable while I gawk at the amazing structures that I have seen along my travels and Venice is certainly no exception.


Welcome to Venice
Welcome to Venice

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10 thoughts on “Venezia took my breath away

  1. Trevor Barrett

    Venice is a magical city, it is like no other I have ever visited.
    At school in the U.K. I studied Shakespeare’s play “The Merchant of Venice” for my exams. I was intrigued at what life must have been like there back in those times.
    I’m sure that it i bit different there now but there is still plenty of the architecture around.

  2. Eliane Carbajal

    What gorgeous pictures!! Venice is one of my favorite places in the whole world!! reading your story makes me miss it so much. The energy of the place is so enchanting and in a strange way like going back in time. I cant wait to go back.

  3. Steve Nicholas

    Amazing pictures, Jim! I definitely know the feeling of neck strain looking up at buildings. Then again, considering how many great artists lived in Venice, it’s not surprising that there buildings would look so amazing as well.

  4. Alexander Paul

    Hi James!

    That’s a great blog, so much insight in your travels… Love it!
    I’m originally from AUSTRIA and we love to go down the few hundred miles from Vienna to ITALY. Even that way when you cross the border from AUSTRIA to ITALY is an amazing ride. Venice I experienced already several times and as you described it has a great flare and history. I always love to enjoy the Piazza San Marco with all its busyness out there. A great place to come when you want to enjoy the great Italian life!

    All the best,


  5. Richard Goutal

    It is just so DIFFERENT! A boat for everything. Police boat, ambulance boat, garbage or trash removal boat, taxi boat (of course), freight and delivery boat, … It does take your breath away, I think because you keep having to do a brain shift. The history of Venice is so filled with intrigue as well. Just thinking of the Doges’ hey-day of Venice, where a whispered accusation could leave you imprisoned and tortured seems so incongruent with the beauty everywhere… Then you come back to the present and realize how history repeats itself in very different cultures.

  6. Jans

    Hi James,

    I wish I could go here. It seems like a romantic place and full of wonderful sites to visit. I can see it’s very rich in culture and history.

    Thanks for sharing.

  7. Stevie Smith

    Hi James, thank you for this great “reportage” of a truly romantic and wonderful city. “You haven’t experienced love until you’ve fallen in love in Venice” once told me a gondolier. Perl of wisdom from a man who lived just outside the city and truly loved sharing Venice with the tourists. My wife and I went on to enjoy a really wonderful 4 days.

    Pricey though but well worth it!

    Great pictures!

    Keep the Smiles


  8. Lorengreig

    I can hardly wait to visit Venice… I wanted to during my last journey to Europe but spent most of it in the Czech Republic… which is also magnificent. Your story and photos has made Venice so enticing and it truely is a romantic, magical city to visit. I would love to explore and “get lost” amongst its streets, alleys and canals, enjoy the magnificent scents of wonderful foods, and I could even tolerate a sore neck from devouring the wonderful architecture! From the moment you “stepped off the train and crossed the first bridge” into Venezia your exciting experience captured my attention. Thanks for sharing this wonderful experience and motivating me to get back to Europe!

  9. Terrific Tonya Heathco

    Hi James, I needed a mini-vacation and knew I could count on you.  I use your articles to travel as I am unable at this time to get out into the world myself. You do a great service to me and to many of your readers. Please keep up the great work. Italy is one of my dream destinations. You have been a big part of making this dream come true.

    Stay Safe –

    Terrific Tonya Heathco
    National Seizure Disorders Foundation

  10. Raena Lynn

    Hi Jim,

    I admit it. The closest I’ve been to Venice is The Venetian in Las Vegas. My understanding of The Venetian is that is is copy by Sheldon Adelson who is the CEO billionaire of the Sands Corporation in Las Vegas, Nevada. I only mention him because the Venetian was created because he was struck with awe when he and his wife visited Venice. He ultimately re-created the Venetian copying as much of the architecture of Venice. I was fascinated with the story because every detail had to be perfectly matched to the real thing.

    Reality is that the real thing is breathtaking and no matter how much he tried to re-create it, it doesn’t compare. Your photography is beautiful and makes me want to visit! The canals have always been intriguing to me.

    Your pictures also remind me of a storybook I used to read to my daughters. It was a beautiful children’s literature book called Papa Picollo about a kitty tom cat that adopts 2 kittens in Venice and his adventures. The illustrations are gorgeous and match your photography. Oh such beautiful memories!

    Thank you Jim!

    Raena Lynn

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