Italians, Coffee and Intelligence

16 12 2006

Venetian Christmas

Some things might never change through history.  The Viscount thought it prudent we make use of the largest coffee house once in Rome, to find out what the Romans were doing, what they were talking about, and gain certain intelligence.  There was an article in the newspaper on board the ship, which he bade me read through, which fascinated me:

Villa Ada was also still at the back of my mind, visions of arcadian splendour, sunbaked loggia and sweeping wisteria vine.  I longed to see it.  The salty sea air blew gently warmer, as we had come closer to our destination, but still had no sight of land.  A wandering player serenaded us on his ancient violin, walking the crowded decks, as the sun began to set.  It shimmered across the ocean which was calm like rippled silk.   

Other travellers, encouraged by the windless eve, set out their card tables, arranging themselves with their wine and coins, chattering amongst themselves.  There was much talk of Christmas in Venice, barely ten days away, which excited one and all.  It was known the festivities could run into a month, with much merriment and colour in the streets. 

I thought of home, the rolling hills now blanketed with snow, the sea a rolling tide of white angry foam.  The wildflowers on the hillside would be buffetted by the wind, leaning into the shelter of the hills and rocky coast.  Yet here the breeze was like a comforting balm, as if the violin music had bewitched all, languishing as they, and we did, on the decks toward Rome.

(copyright Imogen Crest 2006.)




6 responses

16 12 2006

such a nice lyric quality —

and home twixt themountain and the sea —
ah, back to wok again


17 12 2006

Your descriptions are beautiful and lyrical, Monika. And I enjoyed the Economist article as well. Every Sunday morning, I meet a friend in a coffee house and we talk politics, religion and world events, many times leading to spirited debates over my grande drip dark and his cup of Earl Grey tea. But how I would love to go back in time and enjoy a Roman coffeehouse. Ah….I can smell the roasting beans already!

17 12 2006

So pleased, Lori your regular routine is one I think many would benefit from. Talking is everything, and so is coffee, by the way 😉

17 12 2006

Thanks Faucon, good to get away from the real world once in a while, I think.

17 12 2006
Heather Blakey

Beautifully crafted and so atmospheric Monika. What a way to spend some quiet time and I am looking forward to hearing more about Christmas in Venice.

17 12 2006

Great, Heather. Can’t wait to find out more about a Venetian Christmas 😉

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