Hi all, here I am back in London after my travels from Venice to Scotland and back home again! It's been a very busy few weeks. I meant to write something between the two but didn't get round to it. The trip to Venice was our third and it was just as wonderful as before. The weather was amazing. On our first visit there, we stumbled on an amazing bookshop which was absolutely full to the ceiling with old and new books on every subject, in many languages etc. It also had photographs, film and travel postersand postcards. The guy who owns is a very friendly welcoming chap called Luigi. This visit, we tried for ages to find it but didn't know the name. All we had to go on was that it had a gondola in the shop as well as another boat and an old bath all full of books! There aren't many of those about. Can you imagine Waterstones with a narrow boat in the middle of the shop?! Eventually a gondolier told us how to find it and that it was called Aqua Alta which means High Water, something that Venice knows only too well about when it floods.
Inside Aqua Alta bookshop
There was Luigi as friendly as ever greeting us in many languages until he got the correct one. He guided us to look at a strange 3D picture of Venice which made our eyes go funny. When he realised we were British, he guided us to a similar picture of Big Ben - I guess so we wouldn't feel homesick! The reason why I'm writing about Venice is not that I want to be a budding travel journalist but because in that amazing warren of books, I managed to find some old postcards from the 50s/60s which I had to buy for the market. They are so funny; some remind me of the old knitting patterns which are so posed. There were about eighty of them and Luigi must have thought I was either mad or had lots of friends to send them to as an alternative to the gondola postcards for sale throughout Venice! They're now on sale at Spitalfields and are providing lots of interest already.
Here are some examples:
Postcards printed in Italy but looking very 50s/60s American!
These characters are much more Italian looking but reminiscent of old knitting pattern photos!