Tag Archives: life

Changes and challenges

Global warming and climate change doesn’t only mean “it’s gonna be hotter”. Increase of greenhouse gases emissions and global average temperature rise are producing and will produce several effects, including ice sheets loss, ocean and air circulation changes, extreme events such as floods, draught and snowfalls, which could be translated in less food security, less coffee in the morning, more people losing their houses and migrating, changes in diseases, changes in tourism attractivity, etc.. These may lead positive or negative consequences at local scale, but globally they are likely to create big troubles.

Mt Rosa and the near lakes are an example of big changes occurred on earth, the lakes basin being created by the glaciers hundreds thousands years ago. Changes have always happened on planet earth and always will. What put us at risk now is the rapidity of changes and our overall vulnerability, given we depend on very limited resources. Some people and some places are more vulnerable than others, but I think it’s clear to everybody that we don’t live in a vacuum and we’re all connected. We are at risk, not the planet. If hurricanes were god’s, then Trump wouldn’t dare saying “America first”. However, it can still be the second. As we have been using our capacity to modify the environment to the point of challenging our species survival, we can, and have to, use this capacity to reduce the risks and be prepared to them.
This is not just a matter of attending a march, but could involve a thorough mindset shift. Our society has mistaken wealth with possession and civilisation with productivity.
Economy is only the means of living, while ecology is the rationale of living. Someone could say that economy makes our life better. Yes and no. Is that true across the world population? Will it be across generations?
Climate change has become a big umbrella under which other challenges have gone in the background and are striving to get attention. But climate change is also under another big umbrella that many philosophers have addressed since long time. The rationale of life, the ethics of life. While this would take great effort and time to be tackled at planet level, yet we can’t miss this opportunity, and heal only the symptoms or proximate causes.  (inspired by MtRosa view from a plane, I swear I’ll stop flying!!)


10 things I’m grateful for -10 cose di cui sono grata

A week ago I was talking with a friend and I told her I am always complaining about my life.

she asked me: “Tell me 10 things you are grateful for..” ..she’s a life coach
I hardly made it to count 10 things…but then I thought about my last year, and here are my 10 things I’m grateful for…and because I think this is an important list to share, I’ll write it lso in Italian.

1) LIFE (this is always at first place, every day, every year)

– VITA (sempre al primo posto)

Very simpe: how lucky I am to be alive!!!IMG_2929

Molto semplice: quanto sono fortunata a essere viva.

2) Family – Famiglia

No matter how many times we discussed, and we’ll always do so.., my family is always there for me.family (1024x683)

 Non importa quanto discutiamo, e sarà sempre così.., la mia famiglia c’è sempre per me.

3) Love – Amoreimgo

Yes, at the end of the day, Love is all we need.

Alla fine, tutto ciò di cui abbiamo bisogno è amore.


My friends are scattered all over the world, but our hearts are close. (so scattered I don’t even have a photo of them!)

Anche se i miei amici sono sparsi ovunque, siamo sempre vicini nel cuore. (così sparsi che non ho nemmeno una foto di tutti loro!)

5) NATURE – Natura

almost touching them.. (better not trying!)

IMG_2903pareva di toccarli.. (meglio non provare)


Last year I traveled across all Tanzania, with my job –IMG_0253

Il mio lavoro mi ha fatto viaggiare per tutta la Tanzania l’anno scorso.

7) HOME – Casa


Finally I have a den site! –  Alla fine ho una tana!

8) Brompton!

A foldable bike is no price..

DSC_0124 (1280x720) Una bici pieghevole non ha prezzo..

9) Mountains & Sea scapes ..  Mari e Monti

I live sourrunded by people who can only dream about this, while for me it’s just there at my place!


Molte delle persone accanto a me possono solo sognare di visitare questi posti, mentre per me sono casa mia!


All people I’ve met and gave me so much!

???????????????????????????????La gente che ho incontrato e mi ha dato tanto!


All I want

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I’m sitting in the kitchen at my place, in this rainy Sunday on Lake Maggiore, the place where I live. I have time to write a new post! And time for memories..

Only yesterday it was sunny though, and I could enjoy a nice walk in Val Divedro, near Simplon Pass. Me and my friends walked up to a shelter managed by a couple who decided to change their life and come and live in this place at 1750m asl, with a wonderful view on the mountains, surrounded by a spectacular forest, colourful at this time of the year.. I felt very good when I saw their smiles, and while they were telling me how they can make a full and happy living there.

This reminded me of the feeling I had in Roshka (Khevsureti, Caucasus, Georgia).

We reached  Roshka after a long walking day, from one empty valley to another across a solitary pass…

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 wonderful landscapes, peace and silence, clear water streams, semi-natural meadows, the never-ending trail… 

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and finally we reached the house of Shota, in the 9 families village, who hosted us for the night. We had dinner next the wood stove, eating home-made everything, bread, cheese, vegetables, potatoes and meat, and then we had a long talk with Shota’s daughter who can speak English…

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That warmth, and the warmth of the sun in front of the house the next morning, made me just thinking of how good that life is.. despite the lack of technology there, the lack of services, I looked at the clear streams, the green meadows and the white peaks and the blue sky with birds and stars, and the forest with (supposed to be!!) wild animals, and I just felt fully happy and I understood that whatever I could desire was actually right there, no need for more….

The Quality of Life


During the past week I was in Locarno at the Film Festival for some days, and I really enjoyed the movies I watched, which inspired me a lot of thinking..
the Festival opened with the movie Indebito (undue debt) by Andrea Segre, starring Vinicio Capossela and other Rebetiko musicians. It was about economic crisis, rebellion, music played in the narrow streets, music as rebellion to crisis, and it was also a lot just about Rebetiko and Vinicio Capossela, which many people didn’t like. Very little it actually showed the issue of the huge value of what we inherited by Greek culture, which overcome any current debt, and therefore should make EU thinking that maybe we are now au pair. The movie stimulated a discussion with my friends and I ended up saying that in Europe arts and culture are not given too much value because the European mentality is dominated by countries where there is no quality of life, no quality food, no quality landscape, no quality art, or weather, therefore they don’t give a shit to Mediterranean values…
I had too many drinks at the opening apero, and so I think.. I didn’t think .. it’s not about food, it’s not about countries, it’s about people and individual mentality mirrored in a dominant society (someone will think I’m still drunk, but I’m not!)..

Quality of life is not about who makes the tastiest bread or the best wine.. it’s not even only having a combination of extraordinary good food with good weather with wonderful landscape (as we have in Italy and in a few other countries in EU).. this is more valuable on Facebook…

but what is then, is it all about GDP and development? roads, railways, internet?

A friend who lives not far from Locarno, and hosted us for two nights, said something really important about this. He is blind, and he leaves in a 50 people village on the mountains, from where he commutes by bus and trains towards places where he can ski or swim, which requires long time. He said he had lived in many towns or big cities before moving there, because he had thought that could be the best option.. But then he realised that he preferred proximity to nature, safety (in the small village he can move easily, there are no cars), and people who cared more about him and more ready to help him.
It seems Italy doesn’t provide a great quality of life, if, besides good food and weather, cannot provide equal services for everybody. Our cities are impossible obstacles for people with handicaps and are impossible awful smog traps for everybody…cars are everywhere, parked and packed.. the natural environment was destroyed unless preserved by remoteness or historical ownership (aristocratical or religious)…
However, our friend had lived even abroad.. and this led me thinking that it’s not about nationality, or traditional culture, but more about values.
Solidarity, creativity, joy, compassion, hospitality..awareness, virtue, ethics… None of this values is included in the Quality of Life index designed by the Economist Intelligence Units.

what’s the value of walking in the streets and not being afraid to talk to people, and being answered if you greet them (something that many times doesn’t happen if they don’t know you!!!)? what’s the value of gathering with other people just bringing your chair in the main square and share games or music or food..?

Who makes history?

This is the question Oriana Fallaci, an Italian journalist and book writer, asked to herself and her readers in 1977, in her book (“Intervista con la storia” – Interview to History) including interviews to very popular and influencial political leaders of the world.

Is history made by everybody or just by a few powerful people? does it depends on global law or on individual behaviors?

She said she couldn’t exclude that only a few people, through ideas, discoveries, revolutions, wars, or actions, have actually shaped history and changed the fate of humanity.

This is both terrible and difficult to accept.

But my question is.. WHO MAKES OUR LIFE HISTORY?

It depends on our conditions at birth, on the people we meet all over our life, on education, on experiences, and also on genetics. But I can’t help thinking our own history is in our own hands.

We are the WHO deciding which life is gonna be there for us, who we are and who we will never be.

Spring inside

it has been quite cold since I arrived in Sarikamis.

One morning we found fresh snow on the tops of mountains, which average 2400m. But in the lat few days tempertures were warmer, grass is green and it’s full of flowers, and flys and mosquitos!!

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Sarikamis-4 (800x533)

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Things are going on incredibly well, and yesterday was one of the most exciting days of my life, I literally ran after a wolf. As human beings we can adapt to many different life conditions, but there is an optimal one for each of us, and mine is … moving into the wild!!

I wish everybody could feel once in their life the same as I feel now and every time I do something like this!

_MG_4020 (2) (800x571)

PEOPLE.. watoto

Watoto, watoto!! everybody going to Africa is fond of kids! first because they are so many and having time to spend after you, that you can’t help falling in love with them. you cannot avoid their smiles, their shyness, their curiosity.When I was in the schools to take measures watoto, I quickly learnt how to introuduce my self and ask for someone else name “ninaitwa Claudia, ninatoka Italia. jina lako nani?”…. isheshhs.. “jina lako nani?? sauti!”  ..Israel Gabrieli..after understanding that names where either in English or from Bible, it became easier to guess.. It was interesting to see to what extent they were used to see in adult people the authority, a rough authority, and were not expecting any kindness.

Once a very young child came into the room where I was with my colleagues and the teachers. I was taking pictures of them, and the kid was so cute that I took some picture of him as well. He stared at me and then he couldn’t refrain from starting to cry very loud and desperate.

I was the only mzungu, maybe the first white woman he had ever seen from close.