scenic.jpgIt’s 10am and I’m at my desk, about to start work. Truly. I mean, I’ve been up since 6.00. But here’s the thing. This is Italy.

See, I met my friend Mim for an early morning walk – we like to go along the Zattere, west to east, first one to dive into a turning towards coffee and croissants is a sissy. This morning we went all the way to the Dogana because I wanted to see if there’s truth in the rumour that Venetian residents are admitted to the new Pinault gallery free on Wednesdays.

We drew a blank: there was nothing on the board outside. But we did see a fashion shoot. How many people does it take to photograph a skinny girl in jeans? I counted seven. I think one of them was the Assistant T Shirt Stylist. Guess you have to start somewhere.

Proceeding on our way we made for da Gino, for coffee. Closed. They’ve all gone to Sardinia. Nothing discouraged we aimed for Bar Foscarini. Closed, but with a hose running from the front door into the stinky bettiolina boat moored outside and a tell-tale flashmob of flies. They were having their annual emptying of the septic tank.

So we abandoned Plans A and B and went our separate ways, but entering Campo Santa Margherita I was astonished to see that Aliberto’s caff√© was open. Just when everyone else has left town.Ever the contrarian, Aliberto. I called Mr F and he hurried down to join me.

Way really did lead on to way after that. The majority of Aliberto’s regulars were of the opinion that if we went to the post office at 8.30 we would find it open. Which we did, and there we bumped into Ilya, who always has some darkly funny story, and after Ilya we bumped into Ferruccio, normally a creature of the night but his wife’s on crutches at the moment so he’d been sent out to buy milk. Then parting from Ferruccio we noticed Angelo had some excellent figs but figs call for prosciutto crudo, available only at the Punto deli counter and, in short, that’s why I still didn’t take a shower yet.

Nice way to start the day though. Very.

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