Just One Cornetto (OK, Maybe Two Then) - Al Fresco Holidays

I’m off to Italy in this week. It can’t have changed that much since I was last there in 1982 can it?

I imagine the Leaning Tower of Pisa probably looks a little smaller than it did when I was 15, after all I’ve grown a bit since then.

But, other than that, it’s going to be the same isn’t it?


What, no Lira?

I loved that last time I was in Italy. Go to the ice-cream shop, pay with a single note of Lira – get 150 notes in change. Lira really was a brilliantly thought-out monetary system, designed purposefully to make kids feel special even when they were down to their last few holiday quid.

Last time I was in Italy I was dragged around every single art gallery and museum in Florence by my art-teacher parents. I never recovered.

If I’ve seen every exhibit in the Uffizi once I must have seen them a thousand times. If I never see Michelangelo’s David again it will be too soon. And I shudder at the mere thought of the etchings on the side of the Ponte Vecchio.

The very thought of another historic work of art fills me with dread. I now suffer from a rare condition, known only to the offspring of art-teachers, called Masters Ennui.

You get the picture.

Fortunately, this time I’m going nowhere near the lazy winding backstreets of Firenze. I am heading proudly, and undoubtedly loudly, to the sun-soaked shores of the Venetian Riviera.

To the seemingly beautiful and relaxed resort of Pra Delle Torri in Caorle. The only culture I’m seeking will be neatly hidden in my first vanilla ice-cream.

I’m reliably informed they still serve ice-cream in that part of the country. And the prevalence of canals over roads will surely mean I won’t have to dodge mammas, or indeed Papas, speeding through the town in their unfeasibly fast Cinquecentos and Vespas.

I aim to plonk myself, in time-served fatherly fashion, on the beach – daft hat on my head, Cornetto (or two) in my hand – and soak up the best of Italy’s rays before those pesky Europeans nab them all.

Vederla sulla spiaggia.

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