November Love. Italy

 “ L’amore non ha un senso. L‘amore non ha un nome. L‘amore bagna gli occhi. L‘amore scalda il cuore..“

Ohhh…L`amore… I am in Venice,  Piazza San Marco, Italy and it is my last day. Soon the sun will set somewhere behind the haze which covered the sky the entire day. The mist is rising and I am trying to capture on my camera as many images as possible before the light will decrease in intensity and the mist will prevent me from taking more pictures. I am  the second time in Venice, but I am as  fascinated by it as I was the frist time.

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The emotion is so intense. Sunset in Venice..hmmm… this definitely was not in plan. I am watching how street lights are gradually lit up while the daylight is fading out. The purple haze behind the Santa maria Della Salute church indicates me that there is where the sun was setting.

Sunset, Gondolas and Venice, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Sunset, Gondolas and Venice, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Gondolas are calmly swinging on the water while the gondoliers are waiting for the next client.The mist will linger above the water and soon  will fill the streets and give a mysterious air to the entire city. The mist was something so present during my  entire trip to Italy. I can almost name the mist as my companion.

Sunset, Gondolas and Venice, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Sunset, Gondolas and Venice, Italy by Mirela Felcia Catalinoiu

This time, my trip to Italy started in Bologna, la Citta dei portici and for me has a special meaning, Mist appeared while I was visiting Piazza Maggiore which was  right in the middle of Choco Show. I saw so much artisanal chocolate, cakes, and sorbets that I thought I will get diabetes only by looking at it.

Choco Show, Bologna, Italy
Choco Show, Bologna, Italy

I went to see the Sette Chiese. one of the most fascinated churches in Bologna and with a very interesting history. The darkness and mist created an eerie atmosphere increasing the air of mystery which surrounds this church. But I have to say that Settee Chiese is not the only place in Bologna which is covered by mystery. I found quite intriguing also the walk along the porticoes to Santuario di Madona di San Luca up on the hill.

Bologna by Night, Italy
Bologna by Night, Italy

Even the Towers of Asinelli and Garisenda were looking so strange with their heads hidden by the mist.

Towers of Asinelli and Garisenda , Bologna, Italy
Towers of Asinelli and Garisenda , Bologna, Italy

The mist was present also the next day when I left Bologna early in the morning on my way to Pisa. Only to fade away when the morning sun was scattering it over the Tuscan valleys.

Bologna to Florence Highway, Italy
Bologna to Florence Highway, Italy

I can’t say I did a great deal of planning fort this trip. Actually, I never do any planning at all. I knew I will be in Bologna and I will go around Tuscany. I was in Bologna, but my trip around Tuscany transformed into crossing Tuscany on my way to Cinque Terre. I was obsessed with Cinque Terre for sometimes, so, I forgot about my idea about wandering around Tuscany and I went straight to Cinque Terre ,with a short stop in Pisa though.

Pisa, Italy
Pisa, Italy

The abundance of marble on facades is given by the close vicinity of Carara marble quarry.

Pisa, Italy
Pisa, Italy

I do not think that the architect of Pisa Tower would have ever dreamt that his failure will turn his tower in one of the most famous Italian landmarks and it is kind of ironic if you think about it..

Pisa, Italy
Pisa, Italy

From Pisa, the road is going straight north to La Spezia which marks the beginning of Cinque Terre National Park.

La Spezia, Liguria, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
La Spezia, Liguria, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

La Spezia is in Liguria region being an important port on the Ligurian Sea. To reach Cinque Terre from La Spezia, it can be done either by car or by train. I did it by car and it was a big surprise for me to discover that the railways are going through tunnels dug deep in the belly of the mountains. I was looking at it and I was wondering how did they do that, because it is absolutely fantastic to see a train going mainly inside the mountain. The advantage of going by car though is that  the winding road is taking you through some amazing landscape and this is something not to be missed, starting with Portovenere.

La Spezia, Liguria, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
La Spezia, Liguria, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Cinque Terre is a National Park, therefore it is crossed by a network of hiking trails which are taking you through the  ancient vineyards dug by inhabitants on the rugged cliffs facing the sea.

Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Being a UNESCO World Heritage Site it was kept safe from the greedy claw of mass tourism.  It has five villages along the coastline Riomaggiore, Manarola, Vernazza, Corniglia, Monterosso al Mare. I was not able to reach Monterosso al Mare because the road was in repairs so I went to Vernazza.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu

It is not allowed to go by car in Vernazza only to park it one mile away from the village  and then to walk on the winding road to the village.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu

Being there it gave me a sense of being disconnected  by the rest of the world. It gave me the sense of a rift in time. I felt like being in a 19th century  Italy.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu

Seeing the massiveness of the mountains and the steep coastline  descending towards the sea make me feel like I was surrounde by stone giants.

Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu

It gave me a sense of calmness to be again close to the sea, this time the Ligurian Sea. The sun was slowly but surely descending, which reminded me that is late and I  still want to pass through Florence on my way to Bologna.

Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

I left Vernazza, but I kept looking back humming “Hello“ by Adele. I can`t say why this song, but this is how I felt when I was leaving behind that mirific place.

Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu

The sun was descending and the view was breathtaking so I decided to stop in Riomaggiore also.

Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

The sunset light is the most spectacular and I wanted to see more of it, I was there and soon the sun was setting I could not just leave without watching it.

Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu

I looked for the best place to watch the sunset and meditate on my entire trip .I was finally in Cinque Terre and I felt so fortunate. I dreamed about this moment and I could not believe it is actually happening. I was in ecstasy …

Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu
Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Liguria, Italy, by Felicia Mirela Catalinoiu

My life is a series of unexpected events and that moment was for me something that no money could buy. The sunset colors seemed so unreal and the sea looked like a waving field  of blue flowers. I was so happy!!!

Florence, Tuscany, Italy
Florence, Tuscany, Italy

I left Cinque Terre heading to Florence. It was already dark, but I could not miss it for the world …

Florence, Tuscany, Italy
Florence, Tuscany, Italy

It is quite great to travel by car in Italy, but there are two things you have to  take into consideration. The highways are quite expensive and it is very hard to find a parking place, even a paid one.

Florence, Tuscany, Italy
Florence, Tuscany, Italy

First time I saw Florence  was during the daytime. Now I was walking on its streets at night and I realized that the air of mystery Florence has is more intense by night.

Florence, Tuscany, Italy
Florence, Tuscany, Italy

I was thinking that  in those places Leonardo and Michelangelo were walking.  Looking around me I had the sens of dimension of House of Medici wealth and power.

Florence, Tuscany, Italy
Florence, Tuscany, Italy

I would  have stayed more butI had more than 100 km to Bologna and it was already midnight. The moment I arrived at my hotel I threw myself in bed and fell asleep instantly, because the next day I should have been on the road again, this time to Venice.

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

A new day, a new trip. Woke up pumped up with adrenalin and soon I was again on the highway, this time on my way to Venice. It was cloudy and mist was covering the fields, The combination of fresh green from the fields and misty gray floating in the air and houses scattered here and there was giving a special charm to the entire scenery .

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Parking is a problem in Venice and I think this problem you might have it all over Itlay. But, there is a solution for it, find a parking space in Mestre on the mainland and from there take the train. The train from Mestre to Venezia Santa Lucia costs 1, 25 euro and the trains are passing quite often.

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Once I was  out of the railway station I choose to walk to Piazza San Marco, taking my time to discover the streets of Venice

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

I felt like a Japanese tourist  because I was taking picture continuously. I love Venice and although it is not my first visit I am still so fascinated by it.

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Every detail attracts me. Every door and every window…

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Even a rose leaning delicatly outside the fence…

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Every canal was telling me a story ..

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

And I was more than willing to listen. Every detail was fitting so well in the story I was already creating in my mind..

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

My first visit gave me the inspiration to write a story about Venice. This visit though gave me the inspiration for the pictures I took.

Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canneregio, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

I could not have enough of capturing images, of capturing life…life in Venice

Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

I lost the time notion and I was absorbed by a vortex which my imagination was creating around me.

 

Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Another bridge and another canal…

Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Another house and another story…..There are so many stories which were written between the walls of those houses…some known and some unknown.

Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

The red bricks covered with green moss,  eaten by the salty moist….

Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Till I reached for Rialto Bridge I was walking through Cannaregio one of the frist Getto in Europe. The world Getto comes from the Italian Geto. Here was the only place in Europe where Jewish Community had more freedom then other places. There was a reason for that, la Republica Veneziana was more tolerant and open to new ideas. Being a maritime power, Venezia was present with its ships all over the Mediterranean Sea and the Adriatic Sea, therefore, more influenced by new ideas, scholars and artists were flourishing under its wings.

Canal Grande, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canal Grande, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

Venice is a synonym to freedom because this is what its inhabitants felt. It was and it remained a place surrounded by mystery and also inspirational.

Canal Grande, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Canal Grande, Venice, Italy, by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

It is hard to say what lies behind the fascination emanated by Venice through every brick, bridge or canal. It is there as luring as the arms of a lover, but as much as I am trying to figure out I can’t find an answer.

Piazza San Marco, Venice, Italy
Piazza San Marco, Venice, Italy

But why would I need an answer? I just let myself caught by Venice mirage and live the moment. Eager to catch Venice`s every sound, every nuance, every scent I was walking on its  streets without realizing that time passed so fast and again the sun was getting ready to set.

San Marco Church, Venice, Italy
San Marco Church, Venice, Italy

I could not see the sun setting, only a purple haze growing in intensity on the sky where the sun  it was supposed to be. Mists were rising barely perceptible at the beginning.

Palazzo Ducale, Venice, Italy
Palazzo Ducale, Venice, Italy

I decided to stop and watch Venice dressing for the night. The street lights were open one by one while the purple haze was becoming more deeper and mists were courting assiduously every street, every Piazzetta, every canal…

I knew the soon I have to return to the railways station and be on my way to Bologna but I could not leave, not yet…

Santa Maria della Salute, Venice, Italy
Santa Maria della Salute, Venice, Italy

I felt the Love! But it was not the love for someone but it was the love for something. I felt once again the taste of love for Venice. I thought that seeing Venice the second time it will not have the same effect as my first visit. It was as intense as the first time, but now I can say it was more profound.

Sunset in Venice, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu
Sunset in Venice, Italy by Mirela Felicia Catalinoiu

My visits to Italy made me realize that every place I saw represented a unique experience because the diversity from one place to another is absolutely fascinating.

I was not able to say “Goodbye“ only “I`ll be back“…I do not know when is going to happen, but it will ..one day…Till  the Venice will remain asalways..the place for