This is a picture of what the canal usually looks like - LOTS of boats! Motorized and otherwise - all driven by men who never go less than 30MPH on the water - including while they are parking! They speed into a dock space then slam it in reverse. And they cut each other off like maniacs! I thought it was crazy...of course, that ended up being mild once I experienced a cab ride in Rome...but more on that later!
So as the parade and race was getting under way, we saw many of the teams warming up - here is a team in blue shirts and an orange boat - I loved the colors!
Here is a shot of the Rialto bridge as the crowds began to gather. I felt so awful for all of the spectators who perched atop the bridge to watch - as the race got started, the cops removed everyone from the bridge! The streets became very crowded.
As the afternoon went on many spectators appeared in the windows up and down the canal...
Here is our group watching from our perch. I think we ended up spending 7 hours eating, drinking, reading, watching and talking! It was a lovely afternoon.
The parade was wonderful - all of the teams participated as well as several boats in a "pageantry" style - lots of colorful costumes, as if they were royalty from long ago arriving in Venice.
I do have a couple of sketches to add - I'll post those later!