Now, I have been in Piazza San Marco before on New Year's Eve, and was truly frightened by the crowd. This year, however, it felt like Love 2010.
We were immersed in the lagoon, up to our knees -- it is only possible to ring in the New Year like that in Venice, caressed by the gentle waves.
I have always believed that Venice would defend herself against her enemies, and New Year's Eve proved my theory correct. The lapping water discouraged violence and rowdiness, wrapped us in her arms and kissed us! -- Yes! Venice (Venus) herself, together with her husband, the Sea (Neptune), made a special appearance in Piazza San Marco on New Year's Eve and everyone was happy! We kissed each other under the full moon and drank Bellinis from the Canella family. We waved old-fashioned sparklers and danced. It was magical, and I hope it is a sign that all the bad guys are finally getting washed out of Venice. Venice herself is washing them away!
Other magical things have happened this holiday season that makes me think the future might brighten: on December 23rd there was a stupendous, free concert at the Church of Santa Maria Formosa -- Handel's Messiah, with such an interesting list of sponsors that I will feature them here:
Nell'ambito delle celebrazioni del duecentocinquantesimo anniversario della morte di Georg Friedrich Händel (1685-1759), l'Associazione Musicale Orologio e l'Associazione culturale Tiepolo in collaborazione con
I was weeping throughout much of the performance, it was so beautiful... it was spiritual... the music melted my heart, which I feared had frozen solid from all the abuse it had suffered in 2008 and 2009. The cold water from my heart poured out through my eyes, hot and hopeful. Listening to those human voices used as musical instruments... it was as if God had sent the angels down to Venice from heaven.
On Christmas Eve, I went to Midnight Mass, and, again, we had very high water, the highest it had been for a long time. But the Basilica was warm and full with people; it was amazingly dry inside, and our Patriarch was in good form. Afterward the service I was fortunate enough to pray in front of the Pala D'Oro! If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know how much I love to do that!
Click here to read more: Mary-ascends-to-heaven-and-Pala-D'oro
Happy New Year and Ciao from Venice,
Venetian Cat - The Venice Blog