I Found a Key


Autumn in London always carries a magical, theatrical atmosphere with it. The unusually warm months of September and October are now sliding away and Guy Fawkes’ fireworks and a mild fog are announcing the first days of cold.

The anti-capitalists’ tents are still outside of St Paul’s, although there are rumours that many are empty at night. The theatrical feel that I get of London is a constant theme from the smallest streets to Buckingham Palace. It goes from fascinating to creepy.

Covent Garden, with its street artists and spectacular displays of lights and themed art installations, is an open-air stage. Yet it is not rare to see homeless people grotesquely sleeping under a pile of dirty blankets right on the side of glittery high street shop displaying piles of fancy clothes and shoes. Their shivering bodies illuminated and defined by white neon lights from the shop windows; make the cold penetrate even more deeply inside me.

My favourite theatre seats in London are the front seats on the top floor of double-decker bus. Not the London Eye or the Oxo Tower. They only give you a limited perception of London’s grandeur. But from the bus seats, you see everything, including what you wish you could not see. The young businessmen are happily enjoying their pints at the pub while an old beggar is sipping his beer can just around the corner. You see a beautiful woman covered in pearls and diamonds walking besides a pale guy kneeling down, while looking for some food or drugs in the waste bags along the pavement.

And London is all that, breathtaking beauty and unbearable dismay. Modernity and decadence. Ostentation and poverty. The fireworks are crackling and illuminating the sky with various tones of pink, green and red as people are getting on their tip toes in Theobald’s Road to see Gray’s Inn spectacular display. They only last for a few minutes, but those minutes are the theatre play for the night.

Tonight, as I got home after the fireworks, I was tidying up my room. Suddenly, my eye caught a glimpse of something shining on my carpet. I moved my desk chair, and there it was: a key. A tiny key, just about the size of a bean. I have no idea of how it got there and why, but I know it looks like the magic of London has unexpectedly entered my room on this cold night of Guy Fawkes.

A Bug’s Life: Lessons Learnt


My grandma used to always find orginal ways to analyse the world surrounding her. Her so unsual and detailed observations each time opened my eyes before a new world. It was a new world, not because it had not been there previously, but because I had never seen it, noticed it.

In summer time, in the mountains, we would spend hours looking at ants. My grandma used to call them “miniature motorways”, because ants had chosen the flat waterpipe to water the garden as their privileged path. The ants would share the surface of the waterpipe dividing it into lanes and even in the two directions. None would ever use the wrong lane. There were ants, the fastest, who would run to collect their food supplies, and, in the opposite direction, there were ants that were going more slowly due to the weight of their load. Some ants would not make it and they were climbed over and crushed by the crowd of stronger and tireless ants.

My grandma and I would notice how ants would replicate social dynamics in a way very similar to ours, that of human beings. Those who couldn’t make it, would literally be climbed over. Those who were strong and fast, would reach first the anthill’s tunnels, where they could proudly lay down the fruits of their labour. The ants’ motorways are a suprisingly organised march. Surprising, perhaps, because we, humans, are always astonished when we discover other creatures seek order within chaos.  The social order turns into a means to overpower the others.

My grandma used to always notice the red ant, the smallest rather than the one walking with a limp. She would observe and comment on them without a hint of prejudice, rather, with admiration and suprise for them. These were my grandma’s ways of teaching me how to relate myself with the world by taking an open-minded approach and by showing always an amazing curiosity for the surrounding world.

Other times, she would tell me how she, petite in height and body structure, had decided to change her point of view.  She told me how she had climbed on a chair and had looked around imagining to be naturally that tall. She had then recounted to me how effectively the different perspective over the world was very different from up there and, how, after that experience, she could finally realise better what she, from a lower point of view, could  not see.All photos in this post were taken with my brother Enrico during my holiday in August 2010 in Denmark, in the woods near Silkeborg.

ITALY SAYS NO TO BERLUSCONI’S BROTHEL


Italy has had enough of being considered the land of bananas and clowns, the land where men still buy women to gain sexual pleasure and where political leaders are chosen on the basis of their sexual performances, where you can’t get a job without selling your conscience and your morality.

Italy yesterday and today was demonstrating loudly, peacefully and without any political colour for one simple goal: restore Italy’s dignity!

Italy is a beautiful country with so many resources starting from the people. But too many people continue closing their eyes and mouths in a coward acceptance of the behaviour of a political class that believes a brothel can turn into a Parliament.

Italy needs people who want to be heard and taken seriously, not special people – normal people – who are willing to shout NO against mafia, against corruption, against illegality, against the destruction of democracy. People who stop saying ‘this does not concern me’ or ‘there is nothing I can do to change this’. People must remember that what each one of us does / says counts. If we stop believing that our opinions have a value, that is when illegality wins and democracy ends.

We are not revolutionaries, we are not violent, we are not utopians. We know that world and life in general are not perfect. But one thing we know for sure, people faced with serious criminal charges must go to trial, because the law is the same for everyone, no matter who you are and what your job is.

ITALY CAN DO AND DESERVES BETTER THAN THIS!

All photos in this post were taken by myself during yesterday’s and today’s demonstrations in TORINO. I was unable to post my videos in this post for some reason, but you can find them on YouTube on LittleExplorersBlog channel.

Please share this post with as many people as possible to show that Italy is not silently accepting to be ridiculed before the entire world by Berlusconi!

The Best Surprise


It was Sunday and Thomas was in bed, already awake even if it was still early morning. He felt the urge to get up and play. He sat up still inside the warm blankets and looked towards his baby sister’s cot. She was fast asleep. He could see her tiny hand grabbed around her little doll. He got up, quietly slipping his feet inside his slippers.

Thomas tiptoed to the kitchen where the shutters were already open. Everything felt strangely quiet and calm. He was not accustomed to silence and it made him a bit nervous. Then, suddenly, he saw something extraordinary…

…He walked closer to the kitchen window and he saw that the garden, the trees, the sky were all white.  He was completely confused. It looked like icing sugar had just been powdered everywhere. What was going on?

Mom and Dad were asleep…he just put on his blue jacket, gloves and hat. He looked for his boots and he quickly got his feet inside them. His heart was pounding, he needed to get out in the garden and discover what was happening.

Thomas opened the kitchen window and ran outside… he felt the snow on his face, and he saw that as soon as he touched it, it melted. All he could do, at this point, was run and run and run around the garden – he was laughing loud, screaming and crying with happiness. The sky was a magnificent kaleidoscope of snow flakes, that almost made Thomas feel dizzy.

His mom woke up and saw Thomas from the window, and smiled: it was the first time Thomas had ever seen snow. It was his best surprise ever.