National Geographic : 1915 Jun
Photo by Emi :P. Albrecht TIIE PASS OF TRE CROCI (THREE CROSSES) AT SUNSET This pass leads up to Falzarego Pass, which is one of eight breaks in the mountains between Italy and Austria through which highroads and railroads have been built. Wagon roads cross the Stelbio Pass, Tonale Pass, Lodrone Pass, Brenta Pass, Falzarego Pass, and the pass leading from Udine to the Isonzo River. A railroad crosses the border following the Adige River and another at a point between Pontafel and Pontebba. All these passes were extensively fortified in recent years. as well as from the solid land, by sand dunes, like gigantic dams; but there are great portals opened seaward by which ships can reach the free Adriatic. Porto di Lido. Malamocco, Porto dei tre Porti are the names of these three outlets. The lagoons cover a superficies of more than 170 square miles; the sea-walls alone, which are erected to ward off the sea close to Palestrina, are over 18,ooo feet long and more than 40 feet thick and 30 feet high. At Porto di Lido the soft sands are covered with stunted shrubs, and little trembling grasses grow close to the edge of the sea that washes over them with its encroaching waves. The waters are dark as blue steel; the great steamer disap pears on the misty horizon and the light bark returns homeward with its sail flut- tering in the wind. We gaze out into the boundless expanse. Far away a white winged seagull is circling, but at length it, too, is lost to sight in the infinite dis tance. In front of the little osteria (tavern) which stands on the Lido, and under the green acacias bedecked with colored lan terns, revelry goes on deep into the night. There the merry boatmen drink and laugh until the last bark pushes off from the Lido and returns homeward across the flowing lagoon, which at flood tide rises nearly 6 feet, A distant music en chants our ears as we land at the piaz zetta. It is the gondoliers upon the Canal Grande singing their old songs-songs which have never yet been written down by a stranger's hand, but which live in the memories of the people.