A few hours in Venice, Italy, and Writing Raw

It takes stepping back and shaking routine off your shoulders to see the details and intrigue in things that have become commonplace. It happens when friends come to visit, and often when I spend time in another city in Italy. And most of those experiences happen when I step away from the computer. (telling myself something, perhaps?)

Recently I’ve had the opportunity to do this several times for friends visiting me (and at least one more time, next week when my best friend comes to visit me in Italy for the first time) and I like this reminder that not only is the grass greener on the other side of the fence, but I should be reminding myself on a daily, not bi-monthly/yearly basis, about the beautiful place I live in.

Sunshine on the Santa Maria della Salute church, Venice, Italy

I’m known to do crazy things like go to Venice for a few hours and I convinced a visiting friend this would be a good idea. We lucked out, too, with a beautifully sunny October day, and it was freeing to just “hit the highlights” of Venice, which of course included food and gelato.

Cicchetti, snacks / little bites, in Venice, Italy

I met up with Nan from Living Venice, a friend and expat I have been in contact with for years but had never met. I’m always amazed at how many friends I have like this – friends I could ask for advice from or help yet it might be hard for us to pick each other out in a crowd. As I made plans to meet with Nan for some cicchetti, Venetian little bites/snacks (above), I told my visiting friend, “we’ll meet my friend who lives here for lunch” and immediately after “it’s the first time I’m meeting her.”

It’s such a powerful feeling to connect with so many people through something as simple as a website.

Two gondoliers taking a break, Venice, Italy

I’ve found myself feeling quite nostaglic this morning, about this blog, whose entries have been public for more than 6 years (last month) but there are another 2+ years of entries which are now private and start from the day I stepped off the plane from the US on this big adventure living abroad.

Some of those entries are the most raw and honest writing I’ve ever done, and I hope that I can start to get back to that feeling of writing freedom somehow. The absolute pouring of emotion through words, fear of failing, flailing through experiences, and using writing as a tool and therapy both. It’s something that I’ve shielded a bit on this site as traffic grew, but it’s a disservice especially to myself as it stifles my creativity.

I kind of blame Jori Des Jardins’s recent post for sparking some of this this morning. Thanks for that something – I plan on creating something more often :)

Want more Venice? Check out my posts and photos about Early Morning in Venice or Sunset Aperitivo in Venice.

Young gondolier steering a gondola, Venice, Italy

A narrow alleyway, Venice, Italy

Gondola on the Grand Canal, Venice, Italy

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  1. says


    I love your photos :) The alleyways in Venice are so freaking photogenic.

    It’s so true what you said. I remember the first time I came back to SF after a long trip. I started noticing rooftops and stores I had never noticed before. It reminds me of what I once heard a video game designer say about making 3D games. They always had to create some sort of signal or sign to make the player look up because they tend to never look up. I feel like that’s true in life too. I wasn’t looking up enough.

    • Ms. Adventures in Italy says

      @Keane – sorry I wasn’t able to reply immediately – I was talking to Melanie about your comment offline about how much I loved it.

  2. says

    a great post on Venice, and also you opening up on what you have posted on and what you have kept to yourself. I have come to realise how important writing is to me, but I think that I want to not post it all, but journal some of my thoughts of being an expat here.

  3. says

    Hi. You really do live in a beautiful place. Venice is on my wife & I’s list to visit. I love Italy – I spent a while staying in the mountains in Torino. Your pictures are great and you certainly have an eye for a capturing the shot.
    I totally agree with what you say about not appreciating your surroundings as much until people come to visit. We live in Ireland and have a similar feeling when our friends arrive.

  4. says

    Thank you as usual for the lovely photographs and memories. Venice is so beautiful on those sunny days when there is no flooding and especially when the crowds are down a bit. And the food is always a delight.

  5. says

    Your Site is amazing… I simply love Italy, though I’ve never been there. I believe my Fascination for it started way back with the Film “A Room With A View” way back in 1985… That was also when Puccini became one of my Favorite Composers, as his Music was used through out the Film. And, Maggie Smith became my Favorite Actress of all time.

    I am a bit of a Cook, but nothing like the Food you Demonstrate, not because of a lack of interest, I just haven’t worked it into my life at that level…

    I Pursued Film Making back in 2000-2002, and than sat it down for a while… And picked up Writing in 2003, worked on some Screenplays, and sat that down in 2006. But now I am back to Writing, and have Three Blogs, and am loving it.

    But in all honesty, Food is right there with Writing, Film, Film Making, Music, Family and The New York Yankees as far as my Passions go, lol

    I look forward to Reading more of your Blog, and potentially trying some of your Recipes. I also have a very small Food Page on my Main Blog, with a Pasta Dish I created myself, called “Pasta De Luv”, lol

    Check it out, you may like it


  6. Molly says


    Can I second Cher’s comment from above? I’m going to Venice in a few weeks and would love to know where to get yummy local food!



  7. says

    Really enjoyed your article and understand what you are talking about, it is so difficult to write without going back and making sure everything sounds and looks perfect. On another note Venice is one my favorite places to visit and although when I plan a vacation I normally try to plan out each day but Venice is by far one of the places i just like wondering around. Just so much to see and do.

  8. says


    I love your site, your pictures, the recipes! I am totally obsessed with Italy. I’ve been twice and not a day goes by that I don’t dream of it. I actually am a writer too and just published my first novel that recently released 6 weeks ago and is set in Tuscany. It’s called “The Road to Chianti.” It’s an adventure filled with all the things I love about the small towns of Tuscany-the cuisine, culture, traditionals and even some of the historical events that still happen today. Thank you for your inspiration and hope to some day live there myself!

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