Friday, December 10, 2010
Third Avenue in Venezia...
Well, you may imagine, Venice, with only canals, may be in a similar situation. It is.
Here, on a foggy morning..delivery boats are going both ways on the canals....
This spot is at a cross 'street' to the avenue that is the Grand Canale beyond. We missed the pic with the GC traffic, but, the 4 arched accesses on the left are actually berths for the Venice Fire Department and their fire boats, not a flooded Piransi drawing...but the bypassing traffic does intersect with the Grand Canale and requires some clever piloting...these pilots don't seem to understand slow, but everyone has lots of fenders...they need them.
So, I left early for class, which begins at 9AM, so I could photograph some of the activities which keep this Citta alive.
I have focused the study on the area surrounding the Rialto Bridge, not only because it is on my way to class, but it has an active tourist market, and , additionally, the largest food market in the city. Vaporetto stop: Mercato. (Clue one!)
Here is a delivery barge, tied up at the fondamenta of the Rialto, setting up to unload. This type of barge (boat) is similar to most utilitarian boats in Venice, hearses, fireboats, DHL, UPS, FedEx, all work, along with Verdure suppliers (vegetables), fruit, fish, and so forth...All trades have their own fleets. Here, at the break of light, is a delivery for some stores along the Rialto/San Marco fondamenta.
The Mercato, the great market at the Rialto, which as fresh fish, Verdure, meat, and whatever else is being sold, is hidden away from the tourist route, in full view. The beauty and efficiency of city planning at its best.
The Marcato... these open air courtyard and covered markets, have been working the the same way for centuries. Like the South Street Seaport fish market in New York, which until the late 1970's had the exact market with cutting counter and knives used to prepared fish, for our President George Washington on his way home from his office downtown, (He lived at what is now the base of the Brooklyn bridge), as well as the Newport "Brick Market", designed in 1762 by Peter Harrison, both beneficiaries of the design of urban markets, like these still in existence in Venice.
Looking down the Canal Grande, with a traghetto, which has just ferried several passengers across the Canal to get to the market area. Seagulls swarm overhead with the scent of fresh fish. Note: for people, the Ca'd'oro on the right, just across from the mercato. It was planned at the center of the mercantile world when it was built.
Fishmongers bring in and cut up the fish daily for restaurant chefs, store owners, as well as those of us who want fresh fish for dinner;
these ells, crayfish and scungilli are ...m o v i n g.. I neglected to videotape the market...
So, on my route to my class, I leave the Rialto Marcato, and follow the calle and ponti to the Campo d'San Margherita.. above, is a victim of the constant acqua alta. Basically, acqua alta is the rising of the high tides about 1.5 meters above normal. 5 feet at most, which can and does flood the various Campo, the lower floors of building, stores, apartment buildings, houses, hotels, restaurants, I can go on... It also affect boats, they have to be docked somewhere, and if the owner does not adjust his docking lines, those lines can pull the boat under. Here the boat is partially ripped apart, flooded, and probably worthless. Several days earlier I saw the fire department using a high powered rescue pump on a boat of this size, to little positive effect, they couldn't get the gunnels above the water level. Pumping water into water, a sad state of affairs.