Sunday, September 27, 2009
Leaving the busboat a second time, we made our way past the stalls (Joy acquiring a hat, and I a magnet to support Trinkets for Tourists) to St. Mark's Square. Yeah, there's a ducal palace off to the right, but I like churches and statues, so I got a bunch of pictures of anything I could see from the outside of St. Mark's Basilica.
These shots really do deserve to be seen close up. If there's one thing Catholics know, it's how to build impressive buildings and decorate them in the most awe-inspiring ways. It's a God of Power and Glory you worship here.
I discussed the upcoming LDS Temple in Rome with DeWayne (Joy's bro and a local bishop), including how odd it would be if the Church tried to 'compete' with Rome and the Vatican. Some people won't appreciate the sacredness of the building without it, perhaps, but they could actually lose the significance of what goes on inside - which is about the familial intimacy of our relationship with our Father in Heaven - in being awed by His power. ... And if my hunch is wrong, and the Church pulls out something on this scale, I will appreciate the magnificence of what we can do too and take it as a beautiful symbol of God's almighty power. After all, we got sealed in San Diego which is a fairy palace. Nuf said.
This is gorgeous stuff.
We wandered a few streets that would be side alleys if they weren't so crowded with shops and pedestrians. This was my favorite view of Venice. This, to me, is Venice.
We then ditched Hyrum with Joy's family and we enjoyed a romantic tour of the waterways by gondola, marked in blue on the map in the last post. Our guide didn't sing :( so I did. We passed by Vivaldi's house here on the left, as well as Cassanova's.
Joy's favorite part about Italy is the potted plants sticking out of every window. If you happen to come by the house next spring, I don't doubt but what we'll have acquired a flowering terrace on our mobile home. To the right of the flowers is St. Mary of the Miracle. I asked our guide which miracle. She's credited with a lot. ... If you know, please tell us.
Most of the time we were the only boat on the 'road' but occasionally we met several others. None of them were singing either. Joy loved every bridge. Somewhere about here we also passed Marco Polo's house and you can imagine what happened next.
And back out on the Grand Canal into a beautiful sunset.
We enjoyed dinner at a restaurant where DeWayne and co had parked themselves. Hyrum had entertained them by arranging his grapes in a row, putting them back on a plate, and starting over again. He fell asleep while we ate as DeWayne held and sang to him the way I do. I kept him asleep as we boarded a busboat to the train station, but he woke up at the train station. We all got home about 11pm, all still awake, and fell into a deep and profound slumber.