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Fat Tuesday in Venice, and “Ogni scherzo vale” (Every trick/prank is ok) is the saying for today. Think of the U.S. holidays Halloween and April Fools Day put together and that is Martedi Grasso in Venice. The entire city is on holiday and celebrating in each person’s own way. Pastel-colored confetti carpets the streets and groups dressed in theme-coordinated costumes sing as they march down the calle in Venice. I’ve seen leprechans, a deck of cards, tellytubbies, and many Disney-themed costumes especially Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.
St. Mark’s Square is party central with both young and old dressed and having fun. Several of the youngsters’ pranks were quite harmless, only a little confetti thrown around, and some spraying of silly string and shaving cream. I’ve only been doused with a few handfuls of confetti. I was expecting worse. Actually, the kids who were spraying the shaving cream were very careful to get it only on each other.
Besides St. Mark’s Square, Campo San Polo had its own festivities for the day and previous weekend with an ice skating rink set up and vendors from many other regions in Italy selling their food. My lunch consisted of a porchetta sandwich from Tuscany, olives and mozzarella from Puglia and almond paste cookies from Sicily.
Tonight Carnevale and Martedi Grasso festivities will end with a candlelit parade along the Grand Canal at midnight. I’ll have photos from that parade (hoping they come out) later tomorrow.