Plague seasonality is not triple prices for hotels and airplanes, queues at museums, women’s toilets and restaurants. And not even a million or so shot down Chinese, whose volume control is turned up to the stop. The plague of seasonality is the inability to personalize what you travel for. Because prices, queues and, again, Chinese tourists – try to do with your own what is enough for a billion hands.
Venice and Northern Venice are similar in that it’s best here from the end of October to the end of winter, into darkness, shame and horror when there is no one – well, except for the Christmas holidays and the Venetian carnival. Joseph Brodsky for 17 years with enviable constancy came to Venice from America in the “off-season” and wrote about it “Fondamenta
degli incurabili ”-“ Quay incurable ”. And in the end, he moved permanently, from the cemetery in Upper Manhattan to the cemetery island of San Michele, to which one involuntarily thinks about those who died during the floods – they are increasingly in Venice, despite the dam, by the way, also related to both Venice.
Sorry about the course of death. This is not my way of Venetian personification, although the aesthetics of death in a city sinking 20 centimeters per century is clear. About the Venetian carnival as a carnival of death shot his best TV movie Konstantin Ernst. Not surprising. Silent gondolas are covered with black lacquer – that is, they take away the color, light and sound from the passenger, as it is necessary for the Boats; the only key is sticking out of them, like a withered hand.
“The cold wind from the lagoon, the gondolas silent coffin,” – wrote about the winter Venice Block. And he continued, but very ridiculously, about the way Salome passes through the Piazza San Marco with the cut off bloody head: any decadence, having outlived its epoch, becomes either ridiculous or vulgar.
Gondolas, for example, have survived their era, they have not been used by a local resident for a long time. Now it is a hackneyed and smelted tourist attraction. And the worst thing that exists in Venice is the caste of gondoliers, muzzled, self-satisfied guys who despise suckers, in which they themselves transform enthusiastic visitors. Gondoliers are brothers, brothers, “Bratells” of our stationary taxing stations, for whom the main thing is to cut the money. There is no Venetian spectacle more humiliating than two or three Chinese-built gondolas, waving aboard (so that the gondoliers can chat) through the Grand Canal. Exactly in 40 minutes, 80 euros will be cut down from the Chinese, and in the beginning they will try to take from each.
The real rowing transport in Venice is tragetto – the boat-sandalo (it, unlike the gondola, does not have a “ferro” – metal cockerel on the nose). This is a boat-ferry, ferrying from one coast to another. For the sake of the voyage of tragetto on the water, all life stops. Passengers in tragetto swim standing. Dante’s picture, Charon’s absolute flight. Try it yourself. Goosebumps.
In order not to fall into the childish sin of comparing two Venice: Venetian Venice is not Petersburg simply because, unlike the frozen Peter, it constantly moves. Venice, if you look at the map, looks like a fish, from the mid-nineteenth century caught on the fishing line of the mainland bridge – but it is a fish that swims.
That is why pictures of water, canals, boats, vaporetto trams fail in Venice. Just as in Petersburg, the photographer does not give the photographer views of the summer night Neva, which is teeming with boats when setting up bridges. But St. Petersburg’s boats plow the rivers along the fairway lines, and the vaporetto travels in a zigzag along the Venetian Grand Canal: they have jetties either from one side or from the other. And all this water, on which the vaporetto leaves a chalky green flourish, – it fluctuates. Here and there: over the decade in Venice it happens from 385 (as in the 1920s) to 2464 (as in the 1990s) floods. And you – back and forth, after the waves. And the eaves at the palaces and houses held uneven, undulating water feature. And under the feet of the pier wave, moving the deck. And up and down the steps of the half-thousand bridges pedestrians pere-bi-ra-yu.
The flooding here is called aqua alta – “high water.” In Venice willy-nilly you become a music connoisseur. While chatting about aqua alta at dinnertime under mezzo-liter prosecco, one easily understands the role of altos and mezzo-soprano.
By the way, the “off-season” in Venice is remarkable also by the fact that there are almost no street musicians in the city, who in the summer play on Vivaldi’s “Seasons” to the holes in the score. Vulgarity is an endless repetition, riding on someone else’s hump and coffin, that’s all. By the way, the story happened to Vivaldi in Venice is sad. The Venetians, he went out of fashion during his lifetime. And the composer, who wrote nearly half a thousand concerts (or, as Stravinsky’s caustic remark, one concert repeated five hundred times), left for Vienna, where he died in poverty in 1741. And Vivaldi re-opened in the 1930s, violinist Olga Raj, wife of the poet Ezra Pound, who, by the way, is buried on San Michele a few meters from Brodsky and through the wall from Stravinsky.