There many things that can ‘shock’ you about a place, from the food and how people dress to the lifestyle. Venice is no exception. When I imagine going to visit or live in a place I always find myself thinking about how it will be different to Melbourne and how that will impact the way i travel.
For Venice, the engineering of the city itself is quite a ‘shock’ as the city sits atop water, connected via pedestrian bridges crossing over the canals. It is so tightly knit that you can walk to anywhere you need to be, whereas in Melbourne I am so reliant upon my car. I drive almost every day, so the idea of a city without a selection of modern transportation can seem almost ‘backwards’ in today’s society. But I always feel like I miss so much of Melbourne when I’m sitting in traffic, only worried about getting from point A to B. The simple ability to walk everywhere in Venice means you can wander the alleyways and discover new places along the way.
Whether it is a new gallery or restaurant you discover, you may be surprised by the bill after you finish your meal, as you will be charged an extra fee if you want to sit down at a table in a café. This would come as a shock to me! I enjoy meeting up with friends over a coffee so I’m not sure if it would have the same intimate feeling if we were to standing up among a bar crowed with people also trying to spare a few dollars (or Euros). But on the contrary it may present a way to adapt to this lifestyle and take in the beauty outside, to discover new public squares or a place along the canals. This culture shock presents an opportunity for new experiences and to expand the idea of what we perceive as ‘normal’.