Thursday, April 01, 2010

Episode 556: Insane Drive

Late, relaxed start to the day, which we spent practically the whole of driving, partly because we were mired in a traffic jam, which made the CTE during peak hour back home look like smooth sailing. Truly, it takes a continental state of mind to be able to cope with driving in Europe! It was okay though, as I got to spend time reading Elizabeth Bishop. I think 'Arrival At Santos' definitely merits a mention somewhere in my commentary on the portfolio, just because it's the poem in which Bishop comes closest to the scepticism that most of my poems seem to be displaying so far. I'm hoping that I won't write something cynical about Venice though, as this is the one city in the world that I really wanted to visit when I decided on this trip. I know it's supposed to be really commercialised and touristy now, but I can't help it. It's freaking Venice! We shall see. If something evocative strikes me, like this picture of the Sistine Chapel that was focusing on the hands of Adam and God reaching towards each other, conveniently drawing attention to the fact that their fingers don't actually touch, and it just happens to lead to something critical, then so be it. (I have subsequently discovered that this is a depiction of the creation of Adam, which just makes that tiny gap even more telling, in my opinion.) Otherwise though, just writing about Venice itself is interesting enough, this city in which there are no vehicles and water takes the place of concrete. The hotel we're staying in is probably the lowest in standard so far, but it's decent enough and it would probably cost a fortune to stay somewhere better anyway. The quality should go up once we get back into Germanic countries like Austria and Germany anyway. Hopefully, somewhere will have free WiFi!

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