The first person to paddle a fully-constructed wooden Lido boat

In Venice, a Young Boatman Steers a Course of His Own

When young Antonio Morosini bought a ticket to the Lido on July 26, he was on a mission to experience the real Venice: a real Venice that was still very much in the future.

Antonio Morosini, a 23-year-old from the Puglia region of Italy, boarded a boat with about a dozen other passengers from the Lido tourist complex. They had reserved seats in the very back of the ship, which is the most coveted position from a boatman’s perspective.

If someone wanted to see the inside of a real Lido boat, they had to reserve those seats.

The boat was called Albatross, but Morosini and his fellow passengers couldn’t pronounce the word.

At the time, the Lido was undergoing a major renovation that involved removing the boats and replacing them with high-rises; the Albatross was being used as a floating hotel or boutique hotel, which was fine with Morosini.

“On the Albatross, you could see people moving around in the sky, under the deck. That was new,” he told Yahoo News when asked about what it was like to experience Venice today. “It was like a dream.”

“It was so new, modern and exciting, and it was still under construction,” he continued. “You couldn’t see any construction and you could look down and see cars on the water.”

And when it’s time for lunch and dinner, the boats have no idea who their guests will be.

“We sit on our balconies, order food to go, and wait for our tables to be set,” he said.

When he boarded the Albatross that day, Morosini had no idea that he would become the Albatross’ first-ever captain, or that just a few months later he would be making history as the first person to paddle a fully-functioning, fully-constructed wooden Lido boat.

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