A hit-and-run mission to my beautiful and disastrous Naples, and now I’m flying back ‘home’, to Cambridge, which I’ve been calling ‘my temporary home’ for almost 4 years now..( “I am going back in a while; yes, in a little while we’re going back to Naples..”). Cambridge has given, and keeps giving, me so much, and I am grateful for that. In Italy I wouldn’t have had such opportunities, especially in this crazy period. In the end, they, Italy and Naples, kicked all of us out unjustly. This fact pisses you off, and anyway the feeling is clearly mutual, it makes you tell both of them to go to hell. But, there’s nothing to do with certain loves. No matter how long you try to resist, you cannot oppose too much, they exist and that’s it. You cannot govern certain things. There’s no reason – or job – for that. After so long I have understood this thing clearly. The saying ‘out sight out of mind’ works..but, whatever it is, it always keeps staying in your heart, despite you shifting the focus away.
While I was looking at Naples from above, I was thinking of that, of how much we fall in love with this city, and about the fact that the Neapolitans only can properly understand the meaning and the extent of this passion. The others can appreciate Naples, can envy it, but as Pino Daniele sings “no one knows the truth” , only those who are born and has lived there can. Even I fully realised that only after emigrated to England. And since then I’ve felt even more proud of being from Naples (before, I did not even know I really was). The heart, a certain sensitivity, and the intelligence that you get from that place cannot be found anywhere, not even in people from other Italian cities.
I left last Sunday to run some important errands in Naples in less than four days. Recently it’s been a good period for me in Cambridge, a weird ‘hot’ summer period, and a very positive period at work too. So I thought “oh well, it is going to be less painful than the usual, it will be very quick and in a little while I will be back to my life and to my nice job in Cambridge which I really love. I am going for a moment to the chaos of my cities in the south which doesn’t work, and then I’am coming back super quick.’ Today is Thursday. The last four days just flew, and at the same time they’ve been so rich of things, beauty and warmth..in short it’s that again as usual, the magic that only Naples always gives you in the middle of its thousand problems. So it is clear, I will always love it, and always miss it, my beautiful disastrous Naples.
Mamma mia, here I go again! 😁 here there is the latest Radio Dante podcast.
The main theme is the fantastic Elsa Morante Prize! 🤗📚🇮🇹 (again it’s half an hour in English and half an hour in Italian- for your “listening pleasure”..! ) 😜
The shutters are closed,
and dots of light are not disturbing while outside the day is already on.
( Naples, 2018, 20th May. It is simple)
If there’s something that makes me feel at home, that is the celebration by which my city welcomes the new year 🍾 🎉 the thousand powerful colours that, for so long, from the stroke of midnight onwards, crowd the sky above the already bright windows of Naples: the noisy and colorful fireworks that always gladly cast out the old year’s fatigue and welcome the new one, “i botti” as we call them here.
And if you can stand with your head up together with the people you love, then everything is even more magical.
Hello 2018, nice to meet you! You already have a name that I prefer to that of your predecessor. Please do me a favour, be good! (*in Neapolitan: f ‘o’ brav) ..🤗
Naples, San Martino – 16th May 2017
(*while you’re feeling happy 👆)