“One more bridge.” Carrying our luggage over three bridges (as opposed to the four on our day of arrival), we felt the reality of our return to the United States of America both physically and mentally. Who knew that our calves would have gotten so much exercise on the obligatory Venetian “stair-master?” Awaiting the vaporetto (and recovering from the trip to the stop), I briefly reflected on my trip to Venice and the Veneto. Before coming, I spent a semester studying Venetian art, architecture, culture, and history. This concentrated study allowed me to appreciate fully the masterpieces that defined Venice when I saw them firsthand. (Yet, no level of studycould have prepared me for the incredible food served throughout the tranquil lagoon.)
Drs. Beall and Lazar’s guidance left me with the confidence to navigate the main streets and back-ways of the city and talk my way into any church, museum, or palazzo in the most serene republic. Some of the other students gained the confidence to empty the stores of their glass, silks, jewelry, fashions, and masks. The countless vaporetto rides left me with a case of sea legs from which I would not soon recover (nor would I want to). An unfortunate encounter with a pigeon left me a rekindled childhood abhorrence of the winged vermin. The vaporetto approached and I took a final look at Venice from the shore, trying to capture the image in my mind (and forgetting that I had a camera in my bag that could capture a physical image). Before boarding, I intended to say goodbye. “Ah, Venice…” however, was all that I could muster, resolving one day to return to this most beautiful city.