An amusement park built on the site of a toxic dump might not sound all that appealing right now, but an Italian company is hoping it will eventually become a draw card for tourists visiting Venice. The theme park is planned for an abandoned island in the city which was once home to an incinerator but may soon house roller coasters and a giant Ferris wheel, among other attractions.
The project has angered the city’s residents who are frustrated that the amusement park-like many things in Venice-caters to visitors but doesn’t do anything to enhance life for the locals. One conservationist said that the city is “always hostage to tourism.”The company behind the project, however, insists the amusement park will benefit the city. Not only will the toxic island be cleaned up ahead of construction, but the venture also will lead to the creation of at least 500 jobs. They say the project will create a better cultural experience for tourists, as a large portion of the amusement park will be dedicated to installations that depict the city’s history and the ecology of the Venetian lagoon system. The rides and attractions, they say, are necessary to pay for the cultural displays.
A German man died after the gondola he was traveling with his family in was crushed between a dock and a vaporetto, one of the city’s many waterbuses. The vaporetto, which was reversing at the time, didn’t realize anything was wrong and sailed off without a second glance.In response, the city’s mayor has announced a battery of measures aimed at controlling Venice’s chaotic waterways. The canals will soon be treated much like a street for motor vehicles, with plans to ban cell phone use while operating boats, drug and alcohol tests for drivers and more stringent rules when it comes to turning or overtaking other boats. Plans to station police officers with whistles and signs at various points along the Grand Canal are also one of the 26 measures that have been proposed by the city.
For tourists, the new rules could mean more restrictions on when and where they can take a gondola ride. Gondolas will likely be banned from the Grand Canal before mid-morning, to make room for delivery boats. Gondolas sailing from one side of the Grand Canal to the other may also be forced to cut back.
Scuba diving is a hobby that many travelers enjoy. People traverse the globe looking for the best dive sights and new adventures. While most scuba divers consider any excursion in which they see a new fish or sea creature a success, the young man in this video had a bigger catch in mind: his girlfriend. He proposed underwater in Riviera Maya, Mexico after plotting with the dive crew for six months leading up to the trip. The YouTube video description provides more details:
Once in the water, we dived for approximately 25 minutes until we both sat on the bottom of the ocean floor with fish, turtles, and lobsters all around. Once we sat, Emily thought we were actually taking a group picture. She had no idea she was about to be engaged!
I pulled out a board that I had written on, “I love you so much. Will you marry me?” I pulled the ring out of a shell that I had hidden it in. She was so confused she didn’t know what to do. Also, with scuba diving, you can’t give a thumbs up, because it simply means to surface, so we we’re left to enjoy out satisfaction with the “OK” sign.
Portuguese flight attendant Vera Silva got the inflight surprise of her life when her boyfriend picked up the P.A. microphone to propose to her. While Ms. Silva was busy preparing drinks in the back of the plane, her boyfriend told her that he was on board because he loves her, and because he wants to “ask her a question”.
With the help of her fellow crew members and the pilot, the proposal entertained the whole plane – and with an embarrassed “Sim”, the 80 passengers celebrated the moment with loud applause.
TAP pilot Pedro Matthias told ITN reporters that this was the first time he’s experienced this in his 35 years of flying. After the proposal, Ms. Silva told reporters that she was so embarrassed that she wanted to hide in the bathroom.
Congratulations to the happy couple – this is one story they’ll probably be telling for years to come.
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