An elegant gondola with its striped-shirt gondolier plying one of Venice’s 177 canals, silently gliding beneath one of its 450 stone bridges. Extravagant carnival masks … simultaneously concealing their wearers’ identities and projecting fantasies. Blown glass … dizzying bouquets of translucent color magically forged from sand. Or, perhaps that architectural confection that feels more like an imagined Xanadu than an inhabited city. No other place on the planet conjures such images! The novelist Thomas Mann called Venice “the most improbable of cities” … and all on a piece of real estate just two times the size of Central Park.
La Serenissima, long may you float. The world’s prayers are with you.
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