Voices Of Venice: Clara G. – Arsenale

Q: What do you miss the most about Venetian life? What will you do first when things reopen?

What I utterly miss is sailing. We have had beautiful, sunny, windy days that were perfect for a one-day sail with friends. In summer, of course, it’s stunning but sometimes too hot or not windy enough. During these days, I miss the opportunity to be out on the water. This will be the very first thing we’ll do as soon as it is possible again. Secondly, I will certainly be having dinners out! I love cooking, especially for my family and friends, but after all these weeks, I must confess I feel a little stressed about preparing meals, snacks, cakes, and teas day in and day out. Last but not least, to celebrate: I will buy a pair of red and violet furlane and go to the hairdresser.

Q: What do you feel is different with respect to nature in Venice?

This return of sea life has taken on a more significant relevance outside Venice, especially for the media. Many clients of ours and friends of mine have asked about the fish, swans, and even dolphins in our canals. Certainly, the calm and tranquillity of the lagoon have increased the presence of fish, but I’ve always seen them. It is true you can see a few more now but please do not think the city has become some kind of aquarium!

Q: What do you think has changed? What do you hope will continue from this period once this is behind us?

This is not easy for me to answer. I do not really think we will leave all this behind us, ever. For the first time after World War II, we are facing something that is deeply related to fear, insecurity, and unpredictability. I hope we all will become far more aware of the weakness of the previous system. Every single unique and valuable experience must be re-considered.

Q: What do you think is next for our city?

I hope Venice will welcome visitors who are truly and deeply interested in spending some days here to respectfully know and capture the essence of our city. No more rushed, six-hour masses of tourists, who are only here for selfies. No more big ships. No more AIRBNB’s, but normal flats for average working families. Businesses for people who call Venice home. It may seem utopian, but this place is not like any other in the whole world and our way of life must be preserved. Previously, Venice had changed its perspective: from a powerful state often engaged in wars, to a city that decided to undertake the way of art, beauty, knowledge, and wisdom. I hope this current halt will represent, in the end, a new start, a new beginning.