Umbria, the region at the heart of Italy, has that feeling of being a mystic gem silently suspended in space and time. Since the moment I owned a car and to the moment I left my home country about 11 years ago, I regularly road-tripped to Umbria where I would embrace the region’s mentally and spiritually healing power by walking through its narrow medieval alleys and taking in the wide panoramas over silent green hills that tell stories of centuries ago. Bellaugello Guesthouse, where I’m headed, perfectly fits the mould offering its guests the luxury of forgetting about the here and now; as its Scots landlord Alec puts it, ‘The only thing that is asked to them is to be themselves. Continue reading
There comes a moment; a moment of realisation in a person’s life when a fortuitous event or a person randomly placed on our path, opens our eyes and we finally see what has been there in front of us the whole time. We just couldn’t see it. When that happens, we set ourselves free of emotional barriers and we learn that it’s not the world that doesn’t let us be who we want to be. It’s ourselves. Continue reading
I’ve been trying to learn English since I realised that languages were my ticket to the world. It was 2000 when I moved abroad to really live the language; I was 21 and my thirst for learning a new idiom was taking me across the Pond for the first time. I arrived in New York and using my broken English, I made it through passport control, answering all their questions and convincing them that I wasn’t there to do anything naughty. Continue reading
Kettering, November 11th, 2015
One October day of 2007 my friend Natalia and I landed at Gatwick on an EasyJet flight. We had our lives compressed in 23 kilos of hold luggage, 15 kilos of cabin luggage and a one-way ticket to Victoria station, London. Same old story that brings together thousands of Europeans every week, not so exotic after all. Four months went by and I found a job with my dream company, although the position was in Rome, so I decided to go back to Italy. After a year and three months, the same company offered me a new position in London. It was 2009 and since then, the British capital has been my second home. Continue reading
I will be leaving my London flat in North Sheen soon and EVERYTHING in it must go. Below is a list of the main items that are for sale, starting with my red sofa and finishing with my used kettle. Without forgetting my toaster and my Ikea jars, of course. As I said, everything must go.
There are a number of other little things that I’m not even bothering putting a price on: they’re yours if you want them, just pop in and see. If I still have my kettle, I’ll even make you a cup of tea. Continue reading
Last July Philippe Ariño released an interview “I, homosexual, tell you why the Catholic Church is right”, which unfortunately hasn’t been translated into English yet (I’ll see to that!). Philippe is a French catholic gay man and acted as one of the main activists in France who fought against the legalisation of gay marriages. Continue reading
In Italy it’s easy: we eat breakfast in the morning, we have lunch at about 1pm and dinner in the evening at 8pm. The young students will eat a nibble in school at mid-morning (that was so back in my days) and a snack later during the day. No matter of the age, the main meals will be three, with small snacks in between (healthy ones or not, but that’s another story).
What happens here across the Channel? Quite frequently in the last few years that I lived close to one of the indigenous people, I got asked late in the evening “What did you have for tea?” Continue reading