Later in the day, we wandered down towards the touristy side of town near the Rialto Bridge. The day was improving but remained a bit unkind. This did not seem to dampen the enthusiasm folks had for riding around in funky boats powered by a man (during the whole trip we saw only one woman gondolier and she was clearly in training - brave woman!) using a single oar.
The camaraderie and cooperation between these very macho gondoliers was something to see. At times they seemed to be actively ignoring each other on the water but always the gondolas danced gracefully around each other and the other obstacles of the canals.