Friday, October 9, 2009

The Motor-Mount Mascareta, OOPS! I mean sandolo

Crossing a bridge at the edge of San Polo and Dorsoduro, near the church of San Pantalon, I caught sight of this boat just as it passed under me.

Some Venetian rowing boats have special motor-mounts on the stern, giving the owner the ability to drive their boat with an outboard motor, but this guy was rowing anyway.

The boat appeared to be privately owned and well-maintained.
The guy rowing was in work pants and a white t-shirt.
I had to wonder if he was a worker sea-trialing the boat for the owner,
or the owner heading home after work.
Perhaps he'd just gotten off work and couldn't wait to get out and row.
I watched him row off in that beautiful boat, dodging motor boats, and then I kep walking...but I was thinking about rowing.
And obviously I wasn't thinking about whether it might be a sandolo (see comments).
Hey, I'm not above admitting I was wrong...sometimes. :o)


Nereo said...

Ay-yay-yay Greg!! She's a (small) sandolo not a mascareta.

Tamas Feher from Hungary said...

Somehow I'm not offended by the outboard engine mount, may even approve of it if electric, but the third photo is a real shock. Are those modern buildings in the background or old ones made to look modern?

I thought demolishing protected antique architecture and replacing them with new, ugly office space was a specialty of my home city...

Tamas Feher from Hungary said...

The false floor tiles scattered around in the cargo hold are interesting to note. The same method of removable flooring is used in gondolas, I guess?

Gondola Greg said...

Ay-yay-yay! You're right Nereo!
It was late when I posted that and I looked right past the obvious trasto, and aimed my focus on the mascareta-like cutout at the trailing edge of the bow-deck.
I know that design is a very Venetian one, and I understand how a builder would want to incorporate it in other places, but it confuses me.
I must admit that I'm not always a fan of hybrids and crossovers.
Sure the "Liger" is cool, but some combinations were better left unmade. Mopeds? Really? Who wants to pedal all that engine around? And crossover SUV's just look dumb to me.
Ok, ok, now I've done it - everybody all together say "Buttercow!"

As for the buildings in the background, those photos were taken on a bridge over the Rio di Ca' Foscari, looking in the direction of where it turns into the Rio Nuovo.
I don't know what building that is (but I'll bet Nereo or Rene can tell us), it appears to have been originally built that way.
Looks like maybe late 60's or early 70's design. My guess is it was one of those "seemed like a good idea at the time" decisions. Wouldn't surprise me if the locals don't care much for it now.

Bepi said...


I am with you on mascaretta. I think its time for a post on what key features make a boat different.

The bow and stern are cut away, there is only a middle trasto.

A sandolo should have a prua, middle and pope trasto.

Does Bepi Penzo read this? I think we all would bow to his opinion.