A picture of Venice like this one shouldn’t exist – yet, it happens, and it also happens in March. Venice does get some snow in winter … but then ..
.. did you know that February, at least the last ten days of this month which is a mixture of stormy clouds and calm days conveying spring dreams, represents the very first spring month for Venetians? At least that’s what you can see in the gardens, the mimosas are blossoming, and the first giacinti – hyacinths are flowering in those gardens behind the red brickwalls. Sometimes, their scent still gives them away …
The color we dedicate to this month is of course, is a dark shade of turquoise blue, a more lively one than the blu ghiaccio – ice blue of January. There’s always the promise of spring around the corner. You can feel it – days are longer, and in a protected space, you can enjoy your lunch outside, even on a sunny balcony or altana roof terrace.
So we still need warmth, and for this reason, we can view February as peak month for hot chocolate. This drink has become part of our winter culture and is so connected to Carnival :-) When walking around Venice for hours on end in your beautiful costume, you just need something warm and restoring to help you through the day, and that’s cioccolata densa for the Venetians.
Sun light is returning and this is expressed by an old proverb, very well known to my grandmother’s generation. It refers to the Festa della Candelora, which in the Veneto, until a few decades ago, was celebrated on 2 February.
Per la santa Candelora se nevica o se pioa dell’inverno semo fora. Ancient proverb: For the Feast of Candelora, no matter whether it’s snowing or raining, winter is behind us.
Of course, the first part of February is dedicated to Carnival. It’s the most ancient Feast, and I’ve dedicated a number of articles to it. Click here to view them all.
The more we approach March, it’s possible to discover the first blossoms of fruit trees. Apricot trees are usually first, followed by cherry blossoms and finally, it’s the turn of apple. Snow drops, crocuses, tulips … but sometimes, they are surprised by snow …