I loved seeing Mainard turn up in Venice. He was far too interesting a character to leave sitting in his offices in Westminster.
Joanne agreed to spend half a day walking pretty much the entire length of Dorsoduro and Santa Croce, starting from the easternmost tip of the Custom House, where Malin and Maynard are first reunited.
From there, we followed their route as they sought a slightly more private place to catch up on developments.. Those of you that have read the book will recall the series of revelations that Mainard brings with him into the city, and their effect on Malin.
We decided to break the walk with a couple of hours at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum, a lowslung building perched on the south bank of the Grand Canal, so by the time we reached the locality of The Bathing House tavern, our heads were stuffed with the most amazing array of Picasso's, Pollock's, Ernst's and Magritte's.
The Calle Della Toletta broadens into a modest yard or quadrangle, with a number of small shops and cafe's lining its northern side. It's in this area, in the mid to late 1340's, that a significant clampdown on drunkenness and lewdness was launched by the local Consiglieri Ducale (ironically, known himself to be one of the most scandalous libertines in the city, apparently), with the streets cleared of a large number of prostitutes and their clients.
I like to think of The Bathing House being situated in the orange building in the picture below (the one featuring the wooden shutters in the upper windows) - a good place for our two friends to escape potentially prying eyes.
Perhaps this is also the point at which to mention that both Joanne and I are happy to personally vouch for the quality of the ice cream available at a gelataria just a few metres west of here (just before the bridge over the Rio del Malpaga). A month on, the name of the place escapes me, though- sorry.