Exotica spent exactly a month in Venice.
However, from 23rd. to 31st of May we were in Stockholm staying in the Grand Hotel with the European Opera HAT Tour where we enjoyed another Ring Cycle this time with the Swedish National Opera Company and the great Nina Stemme as Brünnhilde. It will be remembered for the vocal strength of the cast rather than the production.
Just click on the arrow to see the boats barging round our corner. (It takes a little time to load.)
Rachael and David McLean joined us on Exotica on our return to Venice
We devoured the Artes Bienalle…..from the sublime to the ridiculous…..
and attended Musica a Palazzo performance of La Traviata. Each Act performed in a different room of the rather “tired” Palazzo Barbarigo Minotto. It was, however, a very gracious evening, sipping Proscecco overlooking the Grand Canal and full moon at interval.
Coincidentally other Sydney friends were also in Venice and we met them for dinners alongside the Grand Canal.
We needed some new business cards and found an original printing business in a tiny lane in Cannaregio. The charming owner was the son of the son who founded the tiny shop and nothing has changed. Same printing machines, same type set. He boasted of orders from all over the world, nothing digital and no website. Well, we thought, they must be great. And so they were but so was the price. As we had printing on two sides of the cards it was double the price agreed. They are unique but a lesson in “lost in translation”.
The weather was very kind to us for most of the time we were in Venice but on Wednesday June 14th. there was a huge storm with a massive wind and heavy rain. This delayed the arrival of our next guests John Studdert and Dennis Mather who finally found us in the dark after being diverted to Verona.
On Friday June 16th. we were lucky enough to get four tickets to the opening night of Sir John Elliot Gardiner’s Monteverdi 450-year festival with a production of L’Orpheo, generally considered to be the first real opera, at La Fenice. It was a sensational night. We were doubly lucky because there was a general strike all over Italy on this day and so there was supposed to be no public transport – which may have accounted for a few empty seats – however we managed to find the only ferry working which just happened to stop at our jetty. This saved us a long walk and a soaking, in our best clothes, as there was a very heavy shower shortly after we returned.
The next day – June 17th. we had a brilliant sail back across the Adriatic Sea to the little Croatian town of Rovinj, where after clearing customs we picked up a mooring buoy and had our first swim of the season.
A second really good sail south to Pomer for a night in a marina, followed by two nights at anchor on the islands of Unije and Losinj respectively.
Finally, we returned to Pula for Dennis and John to ferry back to Venice and thence to London, while we await our next guest and depart once more for the islands of western Croatia.
Jules Maxwell joined us in Pula
We motored most of the way to Otok Cres, where we got the 5pm swing bridge at Orso, between Cres and Otok Losinj. We’d used the bow thruster while waiting for the bridge but by the time we anchored in Uvala Soline it would only make a whirring sound
The passage to Otok Rab, new territory for us, was a sublime sail.
There is an excellent anchorage to the west of the harbour, with good holding and sky blue water. Perfect for swimming, now the water temperature is 25C Julie is happy to jump in!
Plans to go the Krk were changed as a storm was brewing.
Another terrific sail back to Uvala Vognisca on Unije
Our week was curtailed as another storm was forecast and the helm wanted to get into a safe harbour before it hit, having no bowthruster. So we returned to our home port, Marina Veruda. Farewelled Jules, had the guys fix the boat and now sitting out yet another storm.
Postscript: Health report
Terry survived the cold he brought home from Stockholm. Julie’s teeth are holding up and finger nail slowly growing out. It’s not a pretty sight!