Sunday, 31 August 2014

About doing things out of your system

I have to admit it, I'm not the biggest fan of doing things out of your system.
Not that I deny that it's a useful practice, but I think that it's kinda overrated nowadays.
Our society seems to be pushing us at becoming some sort of new-age superheroes, claiming that it's just a matter of slipping into the correct state of mind and then you'd be able to do just everything you want - empowering your hidden skills with the "If you want you can" kind of mantra in all its declinations.
Well, this is not true.
I don't mean that one shouldn't do everything in his power to pursue his dreams (since it's also what I'm doing, anyway); but it's not true that it's just a matter of wanting and we can obtain everything.
It's quite a dangerous thing to claim: we cannot do everything we dream, we are not able to have any possible skill on earth we'd wish to have - and we must be very well aware of it.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Barter Books: keep calm, black cats love reading!!

Everyone has his own personal definition of Paradise, according to his biggest passions.
Who love books often daydreams to get closed like forever in some labyrinthic libraries, where you don't even understand if walls exist or if they are made of bookshelves, where there are very high piles of books, where you can find all the stories you've always had in your to-read list, and then many others, unknown until that moment, but ready to be loved as soon as you will dive into their pages.
Who love books, England and finds himself at ease among a touch of vintage, should visit Barter Books in Alnwick, Northumberland.

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Grado - or how cats like the sea

I'm no beach animal, you know.
Somebody gets surprised by it and finds it strange, probably because he's born and grown up in a beach animals tribe, and has always met just beach animals - until he hasn't met me, a rare beast who gets bored under the beach umbrella, who seeks for the misty and gloomy lands of England exactly like a mosquito seeks for the lights, buzzing against it, attracted like a magnet, like a primordial desire.
But it's not always been like that.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Turin in the Middle of August

Once upon a time Turin in the middle of August was a ghost city.
It was the time when the equation Turin = FIAT was very tight and essential, with no alternatives: Turin used to live on FIAT, it was a village built around FIAT.
In August FIAT was closing, and Turin was closing as well.
Everybody was going at the seaside: Piedmontese in Liguria, and the Southern immigrants who came here to work at the welding line were going back home.
Shops had the shutters closed and even the pidgeons were starving.
During that time nobody was yet aware that Piazza Castello is beautiful, and therefore nobody was surprised to see it empty.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Alnwick Castle, or how the Duke of Northumberland is very skilled in tourism marketing

I must confess, I didn't even know that Alnwick Castle existed.
It's been Ginger Cat who, when we were organizing our trip in North-East England this year, has discovered that not only it's been the castle that has been used for the external shootings of Hogwarts, but that, among the many attractions that it offers to its visitors, there are also broomstick flying lessons, just like you do during the first year of the Magic & Wizardy School.
Broomstick flying lessons?? Shoot me.

Since the nerd inside of me doesn't do the slighter effort not to show up (and actually I'm not even sure that I do have a not-nerd part, to be honest), we have immediately put it in our itinerary.

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Gdansk: a surprise bonbonnierre

I guess it's true when they say that expectation is the root of all the disappointment.
Or, at least, it's surely quite obvious that, when your expectations aren't quite clear, you might become more open to good surprises.
Poland, to me, has always just meant one of my best friends.
I mean, a twin soul whose pen has happened to cross mine 12 years ago thanks to the will of a good fate - and, even if we had never had the chance to meet in person until now, we've got in touch so deeply since the early beginnings that I guess she is one of the persons who know more about me, including my own shadows.
But about the country itself, I wasn't quite sure about what to expect.
I guess that we Westerns end up to put all the ex communist countries in a sort of similar cauldron, as if the sovietic utopia of level them all and making them all standardized, cancelling their own identity and singular charachteristics, had finally worked out in the end.
But this is just a blinding stereotype based on the sheer flaw of not knowing enough, of course.

Friday, 1 August 2014

Berwick-upon-Tweed, and upon two different worlds...

Berwick-upon-Tweed has the kind of charme of things hanging half way.
Whenever a person is being defined "neither fish nor fowl", it's usually intended in a negative way, as something without any shape or direction, without a defined personality and therefore as something that evokes indifference.
But I also think that hanging halfway hides an enormous potential, a way to be able to be both the things you are suspended between, representing some sort of reconciliation, a junction between two elements that are usually considered very different from each other, if not actually the opposite.
Well, Berwick-upon-Tweed is not English nor Scottish.