So there I was, footling * along the Riva degli Schiavoni, when I spied this very different paving stone.
An appeal to some of my Venetian friends lead to this plausible explanation:
“Che sembra come il simbolo della Casa di Savoia. Forse è un’incisione fatta pro monarchia durante il periodo del referendum che ci ha resi una repubblica.”
That sounds good to me.
Oh, I guess a translation might be helpful, not that you’re not capable of using Google or Bing to do the tough work.
Basically, “It looks like the symbol of the House of Savoy. Perhaps it is an incision made pro-monarchy during the period of the referendum that has made us a republic”.
Imagine having such strong feelings about the issue that you would sit there for ages, with your chisel and hammer, leaving this message! Nowadays, it’s a can of spray paint, and Bob’s your uncle.
I have footled * along that stretch of the Riva again, to have another look at the stone, but the area was always covered by the ramps set up over the bridges for the marathon.
How many of you can go to look up a word in the dictionary (I mean the real thing that you hold in your hand, with pages and stuff), and go straight to the word you wanted? I can’t, and that’s why I stumbled across footle. I’ve been aching to use it in a post and by George (not Clooney, just a generic George), I’ve done it.
* Footle: to loiter aimlessly.
I bequeath this glorious little word unto you, dear readers. Use it in good health.