After our first day of amazing weather in Venice, we thought we were all set for a sunshine filled adventure. God, and the skies, it turned out, had different plans for us >.<
The weather forecast for that day? Lows of 9, highs of -gulp- 14, thunderstorms, and acqua alta (high water), a phenomena unique to the Venetian region and which is supposed to happen between autumn and spring. Unfortunately, global warming has really messed up the weather in Europe and although we were already at the far end of spring and beginning of summer, they were still happening.
In fact, Mints and I were in such deep deep states of denial we foolishly dressed for weather at least 10 degrees warmer. -_-
Matching white dresses ! Here’s us bright and early in the apartment and full of (misplaced) optimism for the day ahead.
First stop, the Ponte di Rialto – which supports a market or a group of stalls selling exquisite gold jewelry, leather products, and of course all the touristy stuff. I ignored all the carneval masks and magnets and zoomed in straight to the hand-made shell cameos – they were so beautiful, those profiles that I was tempted to buy one and wear it around my neck a la Jane Austen but I don’t think I have any outfit classy, elegant, or mature enough to pull off the beauty of those cameos.
Couple snaps !
The wind was snapping at my skirt and knees ! But here’s our couple OOTD anyway 🙂 I wore a cream lace frock with a heart shaped back from Lilypirates and a vegan leather jacket from my friend’s shop, The Secret Isle, together with my beige Chanel purse.
K is in khaki pants from Taiwan, a Fred Perry white shirt, and a leather jacket from ASOS together with a Cambridge Satchel and SUPER sunglasses (yes, that is literally the brand, favoured by Big Bang’s T.O.P)
And group photo !
Poor Mints is terrified of the cold and was still shivering despite wearing that very comfy knit hoodie ! And up till this point, the four of us were still very chirpy, because cold weather seemed bearable as long as we kept walking. That is, before it started to rain. And I mean RAIN. POUR. THE WORKS.
And so we hid. In a Snack Bar. A tiny snack bar, blasting Jazz while its eccentric owner danced around behind the counter, slicing Jamon (ham) and whipping up toasted paninis with cappucinos. 🙂
It was warm and cosy and such a respite from the weather.
Here we are, nursing our cioccolato and cafe lattes and looking considerably worse for wear and quite happy.
It’s also where I introduced the other three to my favourite Venetian treat, cicchetti !
They are little plates of snacks or smaller servings of full meals displayed in little snack bars through Venice, and they are just perfect for people like me who like to eat a little of everything ! Like a tapas snack buffet.
Mints ordered this delicious baby squid in a tomato based sauce. It was briny, salty, spicy, and really appetizing. I can’t get enough of how fresh and abundant the seafood in Venice is 🙂
Plates of cicchetti on display.
The very friendly owner also insisted on taking a photo (with just us girls, the old lech ^^just kidding) to show that he has guests who’ve come as far as Singapore !
We also had to pose with his very cute lucky pig keychain.
After an hour, we were hoping that the rain would have stopped, but no, it continued its slow, dreary trickle. Worse still, the owner of the bar told us to expect acqua alta in most parts of Venice until four!
So we decided to hunt for lunch. Just four doors away, at an English (!) pub named the Devil’s Forest Pub, we found good Italian grub, and.. WI-FI.
See the happy Candy-Crushers:
They had, of all things, amazing English-style chips fried in olive oil. We ordered two pastas, and both were absolutely delicious as well as perfect with the warm, musky red wine we ordered. Very satisfied indeed.
On the left, the seafood pasta bursting with fresh scampi and a deliciously light olive oil and garlic dressing, on the left, the very home-style rigatoni with a hearty meat sauce. We wolfed down everything unapologetically and sat there, full and sated on our comfy sofa seats while watching drenched tourists straggle in and stand enviously by the bar.
After lunch, we finally decided we’d eaten and slouched around long enough and took the 4 minute trek to St Marco, only to be greeted by the receding acqua alta, still too high for us to move any close to the Basilica 😦
Here’s in Iphone shot taken by K.
The water was about knee deep in most places, and people were trudging around in makeshift plastic boots and having a ball of a time ! I’m ashamed to admit we were neither brave nor spontaneous enough to try out a romp in that greyish water (Germs! Bacteria! It’s a 45 minute walk back home!)
Instead, we chickened out and went for some shopping therapy to make our soaked feet feel better.
Brands to buy in Italy .. are obviously those Made In Italy – but except for French brands like Celine, most luxury labels cost the same across Europe. In Italy, we usually shop for brands like Prada, Miu Miu, Ferragamo, and Gucci because they have great variety.
I wouldn’t exactly recommend Venice as shopping central, however – they definitely have less stock compared to Milan and Florence. However, I found a real gem of a Prada bag that’s become my new favourite and Mints managed to score a really roomy and pretty bag that’s a cross between pastel and sunshine yellow.
In case you were wondering, yes we did feel better after shopping >.<
The luxury stores are all dotted around the main central Piazza St Marco area and not hard to find at all !
The boys later hit Gucci and picked up some shoes, while M and I lounged around and took ridiculous photos like this:
Yes, Varina flats are the bomb. They last forever, and once you’ve broken them in, they are the absolute comfiest !
In the next entry, we made it to the Basilica. See you there !