dominicvineoftheowls (dominicvine) wrote,

19.4. Wednesday. First day Visiting Venice

i don't know
we stayed somewhere on an island
i don't know
i woke up
showing off my resumé for being able to fly
they were impressed!
i was dreaming

we were sleeping

he called me over
said i should get in bed with him

but this was after he'd taken a shower
we cuddled a little
but there wasn't time
we had only a half hour before breakfast was over
and though we didn't care too much
you don't want to inconvenience people if you can help it, right?

he went to breakfast
i took a shower
i used my citrus soap
i was way too lazy about the whole thing

but when i got there
it was no rush
bad saw dust bread
individual butters

i had some hot water and grain "Koffee" mixed with cocoa

it was all forgettable.

we retreated to the room, yeah
and he looked through his files
what are we going to do with ourselves?

an hour later
we'd written down all the links he wanted for our continuing trip to greece
and we went to the front dest
eManuel had a lock for the bikes
he told us to pick which ever we wanted
"they're all broken"

rusty and small and knackered
i guess
how else would you say it?

we found some that had air in the tyres
Joshua took a little dirt bike one
i took a old amsterdam style one
and off we went

my wheels being so much bigger
i was way ahead
having to wait was painful
weaving in the one-lane road

drops of rain falling if they pleased
not determinant

he caught up
in time for me to rush ahead
get off the bike
and take some pictures

the little canals
are these farm fields?

what is it with Europe and their penchant for claiming land from the sea?


we got to the boat dock
and i went to read the times...

we had about 40 minutes to wait for the next "bus"
or "metro"
or whatever you'd call these boats..

Joshua decided he would meditate
i went off to ride around

the road quickly ended.

the pavement quickly ended
into uneven dirt
road construction signs
to ride around
thick gravel

side roads
to docks
side roads
off to somewhere
along canals
into orchards
or something

i rode to the end of the pier
imagining something

i turned back
after a handsome older man rode in
all older men= handsome
i rode into town
the road pavement again
a church
a store
a general store
i rode past
then back again

a moped there
still running
up against the wall

i guess we don't need locks here

we don't need locks here
it's a small island
it's a [small] community:
we trust eachother

i just leaned my bike against the wall

walked in
Buno Journo
asked the lady at the deli to make me a panino

puffy white bread
fancy pruscuto ham

i asked for her to put some cheese on there
she weighed it

cut it with a large flat piece of metal
some cheese slicer
never seen

put it on
put it in a brown paper bag
printed a label for me

i paid with coins at the front counter
put it in my basket
still there
and rode down the road

you know
that small dirt path
it just went to someone's back yard
i turned around and continued on the way
and the next one i found
i looked
but didn't take it
because i knew it was getting time

i rode back
i watched the water
watched the trees
listened to the wind
and got back to the docks
parking the bike
locking it
and finding Joshua

murmured "booga-booga WAHHHH"
in Braniac imitation

but he couldn't hold his concentration anyway

he was so happy to see the sandwich
as was i
we bit in
and the boat arrived

nice to stand on in the wind
watching the islands peel by
eating puffy hard white bread
the ham so strong
the cheese

at the second stop there was a barking collie
he mourned Lassie
i took pictures of the other dog shitting

when we got to the main island[s]
there was no discussion
i just headed down the first alley
and off we went

into Venice
[ i guess ]

the path seemed long
very narrow alley
but we
found ourselves at a bakery

the smell..
how could anyone not stop?
i looked at the wares
pointing at something brown covered in almonds
i asked him what it was
he said meringue
but it couldn't have been!
of all the things i wanted
i decided to buy that to put my wondering at rest
and prove to him he was wrong
him pulling the "i'm a chef" card

well, he was wrong
but what was it?

good, though
some hard brownie thing
but it was good

as we walked through squares
and over canals
the water green
what colour is that?
Venice colour

so i guess we're here now...
where have we been?

where are we going?

i don't know
but that sandwich looks fucking beautiful
and jeff likes the look of the cookie
i convince him to come in an share the sandwich with me
like a new york panini
but so much thicker
lots of letuce, ham, tomato

the cookie isn't so great
a mediocre short bread
chocolate, which is nice
we get tea
while he goes and checks the slots
the panini comes
and it's warmed
sprinkled with olive oil and rosemary
biting into it is fucking heaven

we only use one tea bag in the pot
don't need it to be too strong
and the slots aren't working for him

so we eat
and two cute old guys walk in
one had a beard
but both are fat
and old

i look at them
and dream..

i want to be a happy fat old guy some day...
will i ever be?

Jeff tells me i can be
and i don't think it will ever happen
he says i can focus and make it happen
but that's not it
i don't know how to express this to him
They didn't focus on being fat old guys
they just got that way
will i ever do anything with out doing it on purpose?
the spoils of my life Lived?

faith in the future?

i take pictures of them
and the guy working the counter
who we both agree on...

he charges me extra for the sandwich
and what the fuck ever
so i pay him
an leave no tip
we walk back out

the streets are suddenly packed with people
and we are gone
we are gone
we are gone
and the flow carries us along

over a bridge
(what are those called?)
where we stare at gondoliers...
stepping down, flowing onward
Jeff looks down an alley
and i push him that way
and follow
out of the stream
past the spilt ice cream (or is that doggie diarrhea?)
free, suddenly... a peace. a presence...
i say
' we're bad tourists '
we're in someone's back yard
for someplace with no Yards
it's a quiet alley
it's rotten old doors
the pain peeling
the metal rusted
it's beautiful
through a tunnel
it opens onto the water..

the Grand Canal, he tells me
all so sentimental for him
37 years
he says

look at the boats going by
the hetero couple eating
having a romantic moment
the two women coming down the stairs and leaving..

this beautiful square: we guess that's a hotel
though we so no sign...

he wonders what it costs
but is afraid to go up
we both feel intimidated by the plaza

i read a sign on the way saying the stairs are private and walking up them is prohibited..
or i imagine that's what the italian words mean

we walk back through the tunnel
to that street
the flow

we see signs at the next bridge for an @ cafe
you know
we have plans to make
something about Ferries and Greece

we go to walk there
but we just end up in some terrible shopping street
jeff Chokes
he gags
he says "that was terrible, ugh, UCK!"
but this street is wrong
so we have to return to that terrible square
next street?

just some dyke-ish girl taking a photo
i stay out of the way long enough to let her snap
then follow her
to the next alley/street/road(to nowhere)

she is looking out over the water
the gondolas parked there
we look at her

she leaves

and there is a sign on the wall there
"no pic-nics
no sitting
no eating

so we look at the boats
we look at the water
the mold
the algae
the moss
the bricks falling apart...

i stand from where i'm leaning on the wall
and notice a black door:
it's the back door to the internet cafe
Oh. Ok.

we go in.

it's €7.50 an hour, you know.
€4 for a half hour
so i guess these are Venetian prices.


in the pressure of these 45 minutes on line
looking up prices
leaving on friday
the finality of leaving Venice
my head starts to clench

why are we leaving?
where are we going?
why are we going to Cofu?

it's a beautiful island

so is Venice
isn't it?

i'm confused
we send off a ferry booking request form

the time..
we check email
we we look through hotels
and it's so hard
which matters..
or doesn't matter?
many rooms
which is bad
or doesn't matter?
which are near towns
or in the middle of nowhere
which is in Hotel Land
which is England? or America?
why go to greece?
i'm confused
and we make no decisions
and our time runs out

buy more time?
give it a chill...
we're in Venice..
let's see Venice..

we walk out
over the small canal
on one of those steps/bridge things
and i kinda flip out
pressing into him
grilling him

' why the fuck are we leaving?
where are we going?
why rush off to some beautiful place
when we're in some beautiful place that i've never seen?
Venice is a place
it's a place people go
and want to go
and talk about
it's a myth
and i'm here
and i'm not even staying here
and out in the middle of nowhere
no where
like in fucking barcelona at that terrible hotel
i hate hotels
and i want to be where i am
why are we leaving so soon?
i thought we were staying a week! '

i ramble on
jeff looks at me
averts his gaze
looks inwards
and takes deep breaths

calm down dommy.

i walk down the other side
then up to some old church
put my back against the chipped peeling green wooden doors.

he sits next to me
we're quiet for a while

i am calmer
and try to make my self expressed
and try and understand what he wants
and try and get closer
and try and be clearer

and we're communicating
we're coming together
we're... compromising.

we talk about that hotel
giving up a night at the place we're staying
can we get out of that?
can i pay some of the money here in Venice?
will anything be open here?

where we going?
and why?
and where do we need to be?

i forget the details, really
but we we went back to the internet cafe and spent another hour there
doing what?
i was writing messages to people i knew
asking them about where we should stay on the islands
places to just chill the fuck out and experience greece
not some terrible refuge for american and english trash

all of a sudden
the plans change again
and we realize we can skip the whole Corfu thing
and thus
not need to fly on a water plane
which would be really expensive anyway

i don't understand?
is Jeff a million dollars or not?

how do people spend money?
how do people live?

but the time is up
and we haven't really got a clear idea
but we know everything's changed

we walk into a hotel
no english
but i can tell they have rooms
about a hundred euros

we go back over to the other
that Lion one in the secluded plaza near the grand canal we found
and it's not really intimidating
it's just a quiet girl behind a desk
who can't speak any english
and it's troubling
but we kinda get our point across

she takes us up to see the room
the first she opens
smells as if it hasn't been aired in years
it's claustrophobic and terrible
€100 a night

the next is 20 euros more
and isn't so bad
a small window onto the back canal

but i'd rather stay in venice
you see
be here
in here
so i can wander home late at night
not have to catch a boat an hour back...

we make a reservation
but in all the confusion
she calls the owner
who shows up
and i explain we're staying out on s. erasmus
and he says
we have to stay there
he doesn't want them getting angry at him
have to respect the other hotels.


like mafia respect
i dig that.

so we reserve friday night
and back out in the square
jeff says
why don't we just get the apartment?
it's only slightly more
and if you pay some of it
i can get my dream apartment with a terrace and a garden


so we go back to the internet place to get a number

now Guns and Roses playing "november rain"
i still remember so many of the words
yeah, Charlie Yeo, how many times did we listen to that album together?
round and round again...


we make it quick this time
get the number
and look at a few of them
then head to a public phone
and call our place out on s. erasmus
yeah, he understands
we can get out of our last night

but all the apartments are booked up but one place
that's 210 or something a night for two nights
but 130 if for three
it looks like we're staying til sunday
which is what i wanted anyway

... we walk to where the place is
though we can't see it now
it's a quiet plaza
away from the hubub...

nice. ok.

Santa Marina...


we wander
go to saint mark's place?
tourist destination #1
i pull out my map
the first time i've TRIED to use the map here
and i'm utterly confused

i'm a good map reader
but i keep having to pull it out again and again
and have no idea where the fuck we are
how are the streets named?

crazy city.

but we get there

past there best western
and comfort suites
where the crazy guy tries to steal my camera or my money
and look him in the eyes
and he yells at me in italian for accusing him

into the maelstrom
and through it

saint mark's.

so many pigeons..
Jeff says
"when i was here as a kid
i was totally overwhelmed by how beautiful this was..
but now i know there are so many more beautiful things..
the small alleys we walked through..."


now where?
away from all the tourists, thanks

we wander and wander
and find ourselves at an irish pub

i'm parched
he's hungry

i get a beer
(no italian beer here)
he gets a Campari with soda

and we watch TV
what is it? Dee Jay 4 U
the modern version of that JukeBox channel we used to watch in Indiana
mostly crap
it rolls by
we natter on about things as we get slightly lit
both of us being light weights in the drunk department
some video from the Kaiser Chiefs comes on ... "Modern Way" i think it's called
and i fall in love with it
some crazy long haired guy trying to learn contact juggling
nothing special
just balancing it on his face
it starts a world-wide craze....

but i love videos like that
some short film just layered over a song
but who are these guys anyway?
i think i've heard of them before

i'm singing the song to myself as we walk over the Rialto bridge
which is nice and all
but we're both hungry

the other island is remote
it's obviously the neighborhood
but Jeff says
the population has dropped here
from a 200,000 height to now at 65,000
fucking tourism jacking up the prices... and no reason to live here but that anymore, right?

empty streets
all back alleys
trash and sewage smell


we both feel bad about all the restaurants
so we decide on a place that we mutually not interesting
and go to eat there

he got lasagna bolognase
i got lasagna de antara
which i've never heard of
but is with duck...

the bread is the first good bread we've had in italy
firm bread
with big holes and lots of olives
we get a bottle of wine

and salad...

when the meal appears
i'm disappointed
but jeff's is what i want..
mine doesn't taste like duck
and i'm just sicilian, i guess
i want red sauce..
and mine is white...

so i order more food!
communication trouble
we wait a long time
and it comes out
chunks of meat on pasta and cheese: no red sauce
i send it back
Jeff is complaining he doesn't like the wine
says it tastes like vinegar...

mine doesn't.. i don't know what he's talking about

then again
i don't dress my salads, you know
i did use some of the olive oil on my bread
but i didn't touch the balsamic
he used lots of it on his salad
and when i sip his wine
i'm sure he poured some in there too

Ugh, gross
Jeff: you're crazy

we're laughing
and my pasta appears
red sauce
no meat

i wanted fucking bolognase!

i eat it
it's good
a nice desert

we're tired

we walk back
stopping briefly to get cherry and licorice ice cream

i try and stop back by that hotel telling them we're not taking the room on friday
but there is a new guy there who speaks no english
so i skip it
and we head to the boat
staggering through the staggered streets
til we come out
exactly at the dock
were we hop on the boat
which is just about to leave

ah, thanks

riding through the night air
quiet between us
the water splashing
stupid pictures
using up my battery.

back on s. erasmus
much too late and tired and drunkish
we ride back to the place
where i leave Jeff
and go ride around the island...

are those two guys going to have sex at the docks?
i turn to go past them...

if they wanted me in a three way would i do it?
i'm not having sex with anyone but jeff right now
but i love being tempted..

i ride along the sea-wall levee
and see a sign about historic places
-- there is a large brick tower-ish thing over there
so i walk over
and jump the fence..

walk around it

well, ok
i can't get in
and it doesn't look that interesting
but i see what looks like a bar over the opposite wall..

is that a gay bar?

can't be..
i jump back over the fence
and go to the bar

i get a beer.
half pint, 2 euros

but mostly men
all men
but not cruisy

i jump the fence in the back
and walk the beach
feeling drunk and tired and isolated

i see two boats out in the water
shining lights into the water
they're fishing, i imagine...

i sing a song about how
light spends all it's time looking for the dark
and when two lights get together they negate eachother
they aren't necessary
so they'll always come apart again
to be alone in the dark

until the Light comes
that oblitterates all light..
until the dark comes
so the lights spend all their time
looking for the darkness

i'm tired.

i ride home
and jeff is in bed
but not asleep yet

but he's c-paped, ear plugged, pilled, and pillowed...
doesn't have his eye mask on yet
so i kiss his belly
and say good night

then head to write...


so hard
i want to write
there are things i want to say
not to you
not for you
but for me
for some hope of me in the future
but all i can do is sit in the dark here
listening to Tori amos
and not just Tori
but her bootlegs
old recordings
so many songs
yes, anastasia
and Horse over and over and over

sitting in the dark

thinking of putting myself to rest

in words

in bed

in the dark, i mean.

i struggled through it
i'm so tired
and it's nearly three now
but i'm done.

good night.


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