By: James Noeker
Today we went to Lido, a barrier island which protects Venice city proper, and the Venetian lagoon, from the open waters of the Adriatic Sea. It is reminiscent of how Fire Island protects my beloved South Shore of Long Island from the Atlantic. We came to this scenic and relaxed island to visit the local Jewish Cemetery, where the ghettoized community was permitted to bury their dead.
The land which serves as the several burial plots has, unfortunately, been desecrated over time and today most of the headstones do not mark the location of bodies and serve as a silent testament to the men and women who were laid to rest in the cemetery, only to be stirred from eternal slumber by men of unscrupulous motives.
Without regard to faith, how could any society in embrace of the brotherhood of man embarrass the dead, and families, in such a way? It is a blight on the history of the Venetian Republic.
Fortunately, lament did not dominate the day. We stopped over to the Hotel Des Baines, a site on the Grand Literature Tour of Europe which entertained writers, vacationers, and tourists alike. Although it is in disarray now, waiting since 2010 to be converted into apartments, it calmly looks out to the sea like an old man reflecting on his youth.
The day concluded with a majestic sunset over the Adriatic and a twilight vaporetto back to San’ Marcuola. La Serenessima delivers majesty yet again.