Venezia... 'If I could lose myself here'

“It was the air she wanted and the world she would now exclusively choose; the quiet chambers, nobly overwhelming, rich but slightly veiled, opened out round her and made her presently say 'If I could lose myself here!'...” ~ Henry James, The Wings of the Dove

The film adaptation of this book was the start of my love affair with this incredible city.  Hook line and sinker.  When I arrived there on my honeymoon 5 years ago I was worried that I had built it up so much in my own imagination that it could never live up to that.   But I didn't know then what I know now.   It's the stuff of dreams.

So when I got the opportunity to go back with 30 other female photographers, I had to make it happen somehow.   I wanted to wander the streets and canal sides, drink coffee with the girls, talk photography, people watch, soak it all up (quite literally as it happened!) and photograph Venice again, through more experienced eyes photographically speaking.  : )

Highlights of the trip...there are many.  Drinks and excited chatter at Manchester Airport; meeting all the girls for the first time as we all gathered around a little bridge that was to become our regular meeting point; sitting eating pizza in a few inches of canal water on our first night; morning cappucino dopia in the beautiful little Cafe Dei Frari before heading off out for the day; our wonderful meal with all the girls together; the kind shopkeeper who gifted us a bottle of wine because the shop had just closed and we obviously looked desperate (!); wading through San Marco in my boots and jeans and not giving a stuff; drinking so-thick-you-could-stand-a-spoon-in-it hot chocolate outside Cafe Florian with wet feet and good friends; taking lots of Polaroids and excitedly checking their development at every opportunity; the water taxi ride back to the airport (and the look on poor terrified Andrea's face as it bounced along on the waves) and just, well.... being in Venice.

It was an utter joy to share the trip with these talented women.  Some already firm friends, others who I'd never met 'in real life' but had chatted with online and who will undoubtedly become firm friends!  Women from Austria, Germany, Ireland, Sweden, Denmark and the UK.  Incredible.  Thank you girls. xxxxxx