There’s a framed photo I have of my husband that I keep on the ledge that serves as a gallery of family portraits in the stairwell of our home. He’s wearing a crisp white shirt (that was before I ordered a moratorium on that color – a.k.a. unforgiving stain magnet) and has the most exquisite expression on his face, looking directly into the camera – one that can equally make me blush or tear up with emotion every time I look at it. We were in Venice (ah, Venice!), having coffee in Piazza San Marco when I snapped it. Me, the most unlikely one behind the lens. Each time I head downstairs, I pause briefly on the landing and run my fingers over the glass and without fail, the vivid details of those few, matchless days spent in this incredible floating city flood my mind.

Leaving Rome, we rode the rails for our train journey to this magically-situated city on the Adriatic Sea. Transferring our gear into a water taxi, we jetted across the Grand Canal on a balmy evening as the sun waned and dusk set in and I felt as if I were in some delicious dream. The mysterious, ancient buildings – jeweled-toned and earthy plastered facades so gorgeously weathered from centuries of sun, wind and rain – dotted the nighttime sky and I was breathless with anticipation for the following day’s great reveal. The painterly morning light slowly, sleepily exposed the soul of this enchanting city – so completely, so ridiculously alluring as we headed out and took in the glory of Venice.

View from a Gondola
View from a Gondola

There is nothing cliché about a ride in a gondola. Absolutely nothing and by far, the most romantic way to see the sights. Some gondaliers sing.

Sandro our Gondolier
Sandro our Gondolier

Some don’t. Ours did not but just look at that beautiful carpet he stands on. And the flower boxes on the buildings! The billowing, trailing geraniums were everywhere. Breathtaking.

Lido Market Scene
Lido Market Scene

I bought several glass pieces from Murano, a scarf and some fresh fruit at the outdoor market.

Piazza San Marco
Piazza San Marco

Walking along the canals, taking in the city’s dazzling architecture, we ended the day here. A glass of wine, a toast to a picture-perfect day in my favorite city in the world. You have to find your way here at least once in your life. And maybe twice. Definitely.

Guess what Adam and Katharine Hepburn have in common? They both fell into a canal in Venice.

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