On the move

After 36 years my parents moved. My mother has traveled the 870 km back and is again in her hometown. Welcome back to "Terronia". Land of mafia and corruption, but also a land of brigands and sailors, poets and courageous people. The same distance from Bari, more or less, is to Istanbul, if they had continued the double, would arrive here. This moving is a legendary epic, a little great our family's page.
Meanwhile here the Ramadan is over and we are survivors of floods and of the first grazing cold of autumn, which can cut even friendships.
Indeed, even here in Istanbul there was a move. I left the neighborhood Tarlabaşı, with regret and many puzzles unsolved, but also with the desire to hasten the pace and be in the center of myself.
Bernardo, my brother, pointed out to me that these days I made another move. I moved some things from the daily mind troubles to the archieve of memory. I wrote a short story that I will publish in Italian on the website in the coming days.

Territorial pissings

Sometimes words come, but you do not want to say. Because as long as the word is not  pronuonced, you still doubt. But when you say the word, you magically open another world. And sometimes in the new world you do not want to enter. And then you can delay until pronouncing the word that you're thinking. So gone are the days and I have not had the courage to write a word, to write this word. But even to say it to myself. Now I want to write. From now onwards I will enter into another world. And leave the world before. These words are actually 2: territorial pissing.
For those accustomed to travel, the concept is clear. For those accustomed to travel and take pictures or movies, the concept is even more clear. But, in truth, there are thousands of ways and circumstances in which you might encounter these "territorial pissings".
If someone until yesterday pissed on my feet, in solidarity I mean, I thought it was because of the wind. These days I realized that was not the wind, he purposely pissed on my feet to make me understand that this was his territory.
I did not take it. Piss on the feet of someone else is sometimes the only way of communicating that people can express. Needless to blame. I step back, then 3 steps to the side and 2 forwards. And let's see if he still will piss on my feet.

Under the same moon

Finally the detention center on the island of Lesbos "Pagani" has been emptied. This morning there were whole families of Afghans and Somalis who were bathing on the beach. The Greek authorities have seemed more than amenable, perhaps surprised by such an action in European-anarchist style, or maybe just not at ease with the profession of torturers and in the end they set them free. In fact it was the Prefecture to decide to release migrants detained in the center, then it should be said that it was also a political choice of the greek government.
WATCH HERE the film "Noborder action in Lesvos" I shot and edited. 
However, the center was in inhumane conditions. As has been amply documented by the activity of the media group of the "NoBorder Camp". WATCH HERE the history of these days, videos and photos.
I tried long to wonder myself and the comrades how nobody has thought to make any action in Lampedusa. The answer was: we have no connections there. Yes, understandable. Only 5 thousand pepole live there. But, my friends, watch out. The greek situation, if compared, seems a resort. Anyway.. It's a long way to make people realize it.

New beginning

I saved a turtle. These days I always got up at 4.30 in the morning. A quick shower and I went out with the dark on a bike, reached the beach and walked. Forbidden to use the torches, because it would harm the eyes of small turtles, "caretta caretta". So armed only with the light of phone and with the very first light of dawn, I went to check the nests.
Most children of turtle leave the nest in the sand at night, between 1 and 4. But there is always someone who has problems. Usually because in the crowd they reverse and remain with their legs upward on the shell.
So yesterday, as I checked the nests, one by one throughout the beach, at the very first light of dawn, I found a little turtle with the legs upward. It is not easy to see them, are so small! The nests are reported by some metal structures, and fortunately this was still inside the perimeter of the nest. But it was still dark and I could not understand what it was. The light from the phone, however, was enough to understand that it was a small turtle reversed. Was still, I thought he was dead. Maybe he was in that position for a couple of hours and had exhausted all his strength in the impossible attempt to turn over. Perhaps he was resigned.

The loss of the Chimera

I left Istanbul to retire in a quiet place to meditate and write. I am in the old land of Lycia. I was placed in a bungalow on the Mediterranean Sea. Everything here seems wonderful. There is a long and semi-deserted beach, at night the turtles "caretta caretta" are born leaving the shells on the beach. Nearby are the ruins of the valley of Olympos, and the mountain of Chimera with its will-o'-the-wisp. This was a well known and attended place by all the Mediterranean civilizations, Phoenicians, Greeks, Venetians.

Bir İtalyan sürgün

Pending a transfer to the sea to retire in peace to design the next few months, a few days ago was released the latest issue of "Express", a monthly magazine led by some dear turkish friends. Today is contained an article I wrote about Italy. Here's below the full version of the article in English, that is the original language in which it was written.
In the introduction I am defined as an "Italian exile who lives in Istanbul". I have to admit that I have suggested this definition, because I believe it contains the meaning of my stay on the shores of the Bosphorus. However today I recalled a phrase of Seneca, one who was very familiar with the exile. In a work which I believe was "De consolatione ad Helviam matrem", Seneca said: "nullum exilium inveniri potest" (= there is no exile).
His thought is that there is no exile for the wise man, because he is always in close contact with things that believes and therefore always knows how to feel at home wherever he goes. But I must say that here in Istanbul, is not so difficult to feel at home.

No one should forget

It took almost a week to recover myself after the visit of a bacterium got during the past travel through Turkey. As soon as I was fine again, I enjoyed myself showing the city (and its secrets) to some friends: Barbora and Pavel from Czech Republic, Ursula and Alex from Switzerland and Raffaele and Sara from Naples in Italy.
But what pushes me to write right now is the last usual unberable statement of the leader of "Lega Nord" (Northern League), italian party, Umberto Bossi. I am sick and tired of his statements, right? We are forced to listen to his idiocy since more than 20 years ago. But while everybody is paying attention to the misadventures of Berlusconi, he is the one who is once for all demolishing the country. And I wonder whether a country still exists on the opposite side of the Adriatic sea.
This is the Bossi's last statement (actually he is keeping on repeating it since more than 20 years ago):
<<No one should forget that in history the North has always given money to the South>>.

Rondo alla Turca

Here we are, back on the Bosphorus. Today is my birthday: 35. "Eyvallah", as they say here when you got something. The day is not finished yet and I don't remember many messages like today. Thank you all, my friends. Something really meaningful for me. And the turkish tribe is so kind and large!! But the italian one didn't forget about me. Not to speak about the international tribe...
In fact there is also another anniversary that I will celebrate in 5 days, but that I would like to mention today: on the 10th of August it will be 9 months since I moved to Istanbul. It was a narrow slit to get it, at the beginning. Moreover, at a certain point, I felt stuck, unable to go forward, unable to go backward. But, pushing and pushing I was out of this narrow slit and I could stand up in the middle of the cave. What amazing things I can see now!! One day it will be no easy to get out of the cave, but for the moment I am still fully amazed by the cave and I am just standing watching the internal walls with the nose upwards.
My turkish is improving, significantly in this last month. I experienced it in this last trip around Turkey. With a little dictionary i can communicate with whoever on whatever. It's something...
Arkadaşlar, şimdi biraz Türkçe biliyorum. O zaman, dikkatli ol. Ne söyleyorsunuz anlayabilirim... ;-)
Sorry, a little warning for the Turkish friends...

Fragments on the border

5 days have passed since the last page of the diary. The first part of the journey was almost completed, the second part was about to begin. On July 27 we went to Imranlı, rather: in a small village on the mountains called "Karataş" (black stone) almost 2 thousand meters above sea level. In fact, we wore all that we had to resist the cold. We were in an area of Turkey where is a strong minority of Alevi, from where a large number of people have emigrated in the past decades mainly to Germany. Often, to escape poverty, most often to escape a repressive and unbearable social conflict. The Alevi seem to bring the guilt of not being "enough" Muslims and even the reputation of being refractory to any coercive power.
On 28 we got up at dawn to take the sheep out to pasture after a night passed under thick blankets. In the day Fabrizio and I left Tunc who flew to Istanbul. We continued by bus to Malatya and finally Diyarbakır where we met two other traveling companions: Aygül arrived from Mersin, and Ulus from Istanbul. For us in a few hours there was a bump of 1500 meters of altitude and about 25 degrees in temperature.

Turkish eternal waits

Half a day waiting for the train. We moved early this morning from Göreme, we took a bus to Kayseri convinced to take a train at 2 pm hour. Once at the station the man informed us that the informations found on internet were wrong. The train was at 4 pm, but the stationmaster-conductor-factotum warned us: <<But perhaps it arrives at 6 pm, who knows...>>. Through that station only 4 trains pass a day and it is not a remote village, it is an important town in the heart of Turkey. Tunç told us that Atatürk had built the railways in Turkey, but after the Second World War the Americans have demanded that the investments were diverted from rail to the roads, in order to sell cars and oil to Turkey. An old story, isn't it?
Indeed, the train arrived at 6 pm, that means more than 5 hours waiting for the train. But train is a very cheap mean of transport in Turkey, we paid only 5 "lira" per head, that means less than € 3. On the train we did spectacular shootings, for our movie and for a videoclip for a Tunç's song. The work was great partly because the scenery was very beautiful, amazing sunset and then because there was a very particular atmosphere on that train. People greeted us from the countryside, all seemed happy. Seemed a miracle that the trains still was rattling in the wilderness as if we were traveling through time on a single railway track.

40 years after Pasolini

Today was the day of Göreme. Yesterday we arrived late and the day was over. Even today, to tell the truth, has had a hard start. We woke up late and we had trouble recovering a file that we needed for the day.
In the end, rented 3 bikes, we left to the valleys of Cappadocia. We have not visited any of the official churches buried in the rock. We have however found one, a little one, by accident, outside the official process of the 7 churches in the open air museum under UNESCO protection since 1985. To protect this church there was a man of 50 years. Really are few those who go there. The church is called "Church of the mirror". We ventured to the tunnels, some passages were very narrow and steep. We did a little lesson of applied speleology. In this valley, and in these rock formations, found refuge first Christians. It is said that the name "Göreme" means "what you do not see" from "görmek", "to see", and "me", the negation. A sort of valley of the catacombs. Telling the truth, I felt much more the christian soul of Turkey here than in Istanbul, niether in Aya Sofia. 
But we were not very interested in the churches, but rather in the landscape and the magic of the place. Look just a while at this picture, tells you nothing?

A moment of happiness

The first day's journey was very beautiful: relaxation, beautiful pictures and shootings, sightseeing, the show of whirling dervishes...
The trio, however, is already shining: Fabrizio and Tunç together are special!
Tomorrow we go to Göreme...
But here's a poem by Mevlana:
<<A moment of happiness,
you and I sitting on the verandah,
apparently two, but one in soul, you and I.
We feel the flowing water of life here,
you and I, with the garden's beauty
and the birds singing.
The stars will be watching us,
and we will show them
what it is to be a thin crescent moon.
You and I unselfed, will be together,
indifferent to idle speculation, you and I.
The parrots of heaven will be cracking sugar
as we laugh together, you and I.
In one form upon this earth,
and in another form in a timeless sweet land>>.

İyi yolculuklar!

We left! Tunç, Fabrizio and I. A 10 days of travel through Turkey. For now we are in the city of Mevlana. We arrived a few hours ago. The last week in Istanbul was very hard, there were many things to do. And there should be things to tell. The night passed on Büyük Ada, an island in the Sea of Marmara where cars are forbidden, only carriages with horses that speed fast in large numbers, and I on one of these with the contrabass, Ludovica and Özhan, because we were there with Bandista to play during a celebration of marriage of German people, the mosquitoes, the flowers of lavender smeared on the skin and a woman with her arm broken at dawn.
Many other things, some scenes filmed, the cry of a girl.
But now we are here. Konya has a smell of dry straw. We arrived at midnight and the streets were already deserted. Time to familiarize with the city and its secrets and take place in a small hotel.
Tomorrow I will make some shootings with Fabrizio and visit the tomb of the founder of the whirling dervishes.
İyi yolculuklar!
Buon viaggio!
Nice trip!

Unexpected respite

The storm (and the heat, to be honest) has granted a respite. I had a small break from filming yesterday. Also because not everything went as planned and therefore some work has been postponed to late August. So yesterday afternoon I was with Karagüneş for a session on the road on Istiklal Caddesi. We even collected a fair hoard.. it was the first experiment, but it should be repeated in future.
Meanwhile, the workshop in Sulukule continues. Later in the afternoon I will go there for another meeting. Friday should be the last day of workshop, for now. A few days ago we attended an amazing fight with kites between the kids there. This is one of their favourite games and the goal is to cut the other kites until only one remains. For this, they use to put some razor blades on the wings of the kite and once they get in touch in the sky, often one is cut and then falls down.
Next week I will leave for a trip throughout Turkey. Fabrizio will come from Italy and Tunç will be with us for the first part of the trip. We will end our journey in the very East part of the country. Meanwhile I will try to do my best going on with the work.

Geraniums on the run

This page of diary serves as a radio signal, before encountering the storm (and probably losing contact) or before diving into the Dantesque giron of the following 10 days. I locate myself and confirm that everything is fine, by now. Tomorrow who knows.
They will be 10 days of fire, things to do are so many, many shootings for the film, lots of responsibility and above all, as in all the hells, the unbearable heat.
So much so that the geraniums plant on the window, since a few days began to launch her branches and flowers toward the inside of the room not outwards towards the light. Incredible thing. But she also tries to escape heat.
Yesterday began the workshop with the kids of Sulukule. They are terrible, loud, but they are smart and clever. So nothing better than you could wish for!
Here above some pictures of Izmir, last week. It looks like in Palermo, isn't it?

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