VENICE, ITALY — There’s not much to be said about Venice that hasn’t already been said a thousand times before. A tourist trap. Disneyland for adults. An almost comical parody of its former self.
All these things are true, of course. But that’s part of the charm of this legendary world of water: you can find in it what you want.
Once you get past the boatloads of snap-happy tourists, past the rampant graffiti and centuries thick dirt, it only takes one turn to find the beauty in Venice.
For me, the best part of Venice is just taking off and exploring. Making your way down a labyrinth of winding streets, catching the lone gondolier humming softly on his way home, stopping in for a spritz at any no-name cafe, the sound of laughter and jazz echoing down the granite walls.
The hidden side.
Like a camera-hungry celebrity caught in a brief, but real moment of sincerity between red carpet flashes. It’s not about grand tours or sweeping vistas — it’s about small moments caught here and there, when you realize exactly where you are and that there’s no better place to be — if only for that short moment.
That’s what I remember loving so much about Venice — and what is still there, if you know where to look.