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Playing Intifada Near Baalbek

Baalbek (Lebanon). This scene happened in front of my eyes some years, when I was travelling around Lebanon. That day I was in Baalbek, a wonderful site with an ancient Roman city, and just around the archaeological area I noticed a group of children, more or less 8-10 years old. They were playing, as every child normally does; but their game really surprised me: they were playing “intifada”, dividing themselves into two groups and throwing stones against each others. When I captured this photograph two of them were targeting one of the group, probably the youngest.

I found this scene very cruel and symbolic of the reality that these children – and many others around the world – have to live daily. No PlayStation or any other gaming console, no smartphones or tablets, just some stones and their fantasy. Which, combined together with that tendency to imitate adults (typical of young generations), bring these children to play intifada…

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The Natural Arch of Legzira Beach, Morocco

Sidi Ifni (Morocco). Last night, reading a news website, I sadly discovered that one of the natural arches of Legzira – a beach in Sidi Ifni, close to Agadir on the Atlantic coast of Morocco – collapsed for natural reasons. I link this place with the memories of an amazing “on-the-road” trip, thousands and thousands of kilometers around Morocco, freely deciding the itinerary day by day and discovering its incredible beauties. It was between the end of 2009 and the beginning of 2010.

This photograph (and the others posted with the tag “Legzira”) has been taken on January 2nd, 2010: the new year’s eve’s excitement was just over and that afternoon, with the sun offering a magic sunset going down into the Atlantic Ocean, I spent several hours contemplating this wonder and the surrounding landscape, as well as making good resolutions for the new year which had just begun. And since at the end the 2010 had been an important year of my life, I like to imagine that this place in a certain sense brought me luck.

For this reason too, the idea that one of the natural arches of Legzira does not exist anymore makes me very sad. I remember that in front of such an amazing wonder, I understood how much nature can build great masterworks! And today, sadly, I also understand that as it can build, it can destroy. In a certain sense, it’s possible to imagine that nature does not have the sensibility to preserve something of beautiful, something built or excavated in thousands and thousands of years. No, nature must go on along its own way without being satisfied for what it has been able to do: nature must proceed along its path, and if this means destroying something, it does not matter. I don’t think there’s too much to do, just getting consciousness of our impotence: and if we want to deceive ourselves that we can stop the natural development of things, the only way we can do it is just shooting a photo.


Sidi Ifni (Marocco). Ieri sera, guardando il sito di un giornale, ho letto la bruttissima notizia che uno degli archi naturali di Legzira – spiaggia sulla costa atlantica del Marocco nei pressi di Sidi Ifni, vicino ad Agadir – è collassato in maniera naturale. Lego a questo posto il ricordo di un viaggio bellissimo, tutto “on-the-road”: migliaia e migliaia di chilometri per il Marocco a scoprirne le sue incredibili bellezze a cavallo tra il 2009 e il 2010, decidendo giorno per giorno l’itinerario in totale libertà.

Questa foto (e le altre che ho postato con il tag Legzira) è stata scattata il 2 gennaio 2010: da poco si era spento l’entusiasmo del capodanno e quel pomeriggio, con il sole che scendeva nell’Oceano Atlantico regalandomi un tramonto magico, passai diverse ore in contemplazione di questa meraviglia e del panorama circostante, facendo buoni propositi per l’anno appena cominciato. E visto che il 2010 fu un anno che importante della mia vita, mi piace pensare che questo posto mi abbia in un certo senso portato fortuna.

Anche per questo l’idea che uno degli archi naturali di Legzira non ci sia più mi intristisce molto. Ricordo che di fronte a un simile spettacolo, capii quanto la natura sia capace di costruire cose grandiose! E oggi, tristemente, comprendo anche che come le costruisce, le distrugge. In un certo senso, si può pensare che la natura non abbia la sensibilità di conservare un qualcosa di bello, magari che ha impiegato migilaia di anni per essere realizzato. No, la natura deve andare avanti per la sua strada senza mai compiacersi di quello che ha saputo fare: la natura deve proseguire nel suo cammino, e se questo vuol dire distruggere, non importa. Non credo ci sia molto da fare se non diventare consapevoli della nostra impotenza: e se proprio ci illudiamo di fermare il corso della natura, l’unico modo per farlo è proprio scattandole delle fotografie.

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Postcard from Italy: At The Foot of the Capri’s Faraglioni

Capri (Italy). I guess this image has been taken so many times by so many people! More or less, everyone descending the steep staircase that goes from the narrow streets of Capri to the sea – at the foot of the Faraglioni – must have captured this scene… Especially in summer, when the platform is covered by open sun umbrellas and people are lying down for a hard session of sunbathing.

Anyway, now it’s my turn!

This place photographed here is a very popular beach resort: it’s name is “da Luigi ai Faraglioni” and – indeed – its position is exactly at the foot of Faraglioni, the famous rocks characterizing this small but very popular Italian island, less-than-an-hour by boat far from Naples. Experts say that this is “the place to be” in Summer, when it’s very hot, because it’s oriented toward East, therefore in the afternoon there’s shadow and it’s a bit less scorching (after all, we are in the South of Italy). The neighbor opposite resort (named “Fontellina“) is much better in Spring and Autumn because it’s oriented toward West and captures every sun ray till sunset (again, this is what Capri’s habitue say).

Diego Della Valle, a popular Italian entrepreneur (he’s President and CEO of the Italian leather goods company, Tod’s) well known for his love for Capri, once said this sentence:

“Put a compass to paper and trace a circle. Then tell me which other country [in the world] has such a concentration of places like Amalfi, Naples, Ischia, Procida, Sorrento, Positano, Pompeii, and Capri”

Although he uses to enjoy Capri from his very large motor-yacht Altair III (google it and you will understand what I mean), to be honest I think he’s absolutely right (and not because I’m Italian, of course!).

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