Crossword Genius

Boat almost left with awkward load (7)

Ross

I believe the answer is:

gondola

I'm a little stuck... Click here to teach me more about this clue!

'boat' is the definition.
(I know that gondola is a type of boat)

'almost left with awkward load' is the wordplay.
'almost left' becomes 'gon' (I can't justify this - if you can you should believe this answer much more).
'with' says to put letters next to each other.
'awkward' indicates anagramming the letters.
'load' with letters rearranged gives 'dola'.
'gon'+'dola'='GONDOLA'

Can you help me to learn more?

(Other definitions for gondola that I've seen before include "Traditional rowboat of Venice" , "It's traditionally used on the canals of Venice" , "Venice craft" , "Boats on the canals of Venice" , "Venetian transport" .)

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