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In August '98, we went to Venice, which is in the north of Italy.

It was incredibly exciting. We flew from London direct to Venice. While you're there, there are no cars, so we either had to walk everywhere, or go by vaporetto, which is a big water-bus that takes you around the canals.

The picture above is of us sitting on the famous Rialto Bridge.

This picture of us in the sea with Mummy was taken at the Lido, which is just a short boat ride from Venice. The building in the background is the Hotel des Bains, which Thomas Mann made famous in his book 'Death in Venice', and which is in the film of that book.

On the left, you can see Teddy and Bella, who had a great time, and ate far too much delicious Italian ice-cream.

Part of the idea of going to Venice was that we'd all take big sketch books and do some drawing every day.

The charcoal below was drawn by Jack in the nave of the church of the Madonna dell'Orto, where the painter Tintoretto is buried.

Every year in February, Venice hosts a spectacular carnival, when everybody wears beautiful papier-mache masks. We weren't there at the right time for it, but this is us with a masked figure called the 'Plague Doctor', outside one of the shops that makes and sells the masks.

Jack bought this beautiful 'mouse' mask as a souvenir.

We went to see all the most beautiful islands in the lagoon on which Venice is built.

We visited Murano, and saw people making the beautiful handblown glass that comes from there.

We went to Burano and saw women making lace.

And we visited Torcello, which is almost deserted now, but has a beautiful old cathedral.

We visited St Mark's Square and saw the Basilica and the Campanile and the Doge's Palace.

We ate lots of pizza and lots of pasta, and because it was very hot we drank lots of water and almost as much Coke.

There's probably nothing quite as typical of Venice as the gondolas. Even though we didn't actually go for a ride on one, Ben did do this very nice drawing.