To reach the island of Torcello from our home we drove for nearly an hour and then took three (count them: three!) boats once we reached Venice.
We spent a night there with some friends way back in December, a twenty-four hour escape from the hassle and demands of real life. Of course, twenty-four hours in this place was just a tease that left me longing for more time alone with my husband or in the company of adults, doing adult things.
Not that we did anything particularly exciting or adult-like...we were on a nearly deserted island in the dead of winter, in the height of the off season. We hung out, laughed, drank too much wine (that we carried across the lagoon in our bags with us), forged new friendships, celebrated a birthday...good times, for sure, but all things we generally do with children in tow.
We spent the night in Torcello in the famed Locanda Cipriani, the same place Hemingway called home while writing Across the River and into the Trees, and we feasted in the almost-empty restaurant, specifically on moeche, small soft-shelled crabs. The servers wore short white jackets, the glassware was in abundance, the dessert was on fire, and the conversation flowed freely.
No one in our party managed to read the novel in advance of our sojourn. I made an honest effort, just couldn't do it. It opens with
Hemingway the protagonist duck hunting in the marsh, in case you are interested. John Paul I once visited Torcello, and lo and behold, he warrants a bronze statue in his honor.
In addition to a visit to Locanda Cipriani, visitors flock to Torcello to visit the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, home to incredible Byzantine mosaics. (No photos allowed!) The place is simply incredible and well worth your time and the three pieces of watercraft.
Where shall we go? Suggestions?