Beginning with our first cappuccino at a local cafe this morning, we were feeling the love, Venice Style!
We set off in search of a particular local legend very much related to a love story- the heart shaped stone. We'd been to this spot years ago, it was time to revisit it. And what better day than today.
Most of the stories you read about this spot in Castello say simply that if you are here as a couple and both touch the stone, your love will last forever. If you are alone and make a wish about love while touching the stone, then that wish will come true within a year.
We've read another version of this legend that goes like this:
A young Venetian fisherman who fished in the waters at Malamocca heard a voice calling to him one night while he was out fishing. He heard a girl begging to be freed, and then he saw a beautiful girl, however she was a mermaid. They fell in love and she agreed to marry him, on the condition that he not come to see her ever on a Saturday. He promised, but after a short while could not keep his promise, he went to see her on a Saturday, but all he found was a large serpent in the water. The snake said she had told him not to come, that because of a curse she was condemned to be a serpent every Saturday. However, if he married her, she would always be as beautiful as he had seen her.
They did get married and had 3 children. The beautiful girl got very sick and died, and the young man returned her body to the sea as she had asked. The young father with 3 small children was very distressed, not sure he could manage a job and the children himself. Every day upon returning home from work he found the house spotlessly clean. One day he came home earlier than usual and discovered a serpent in the house. He killed the snake, and from that time on, the house was no longer cleaned. He realized the snake he killed had to have been his beautiful wife.
In remembrance of this love story the brick heart was placed at their house at the Sotoportego dei Preti in Castello.
Next time you find yourself in Castello, find the heart shaped stone and make your own wish. It doesn't have to be on San Valentino day.