An announcement was made this week that the 63rd edition of the Zecchino d’orowill be postponed due to Covid 19. The presenters of the event this year Mara Venier and Carlo Conti will have to wait until May 2021 for the show to be broadcast on Rai 1.
When I read this, I immediately thought of Gianluca. So, what is the Zecchino d’oro and what does it have to do with Gianluca?
The Zecchino d’oro is an Italian tradition.It is an event for kids, and it is dedicated to them and to all the adults who still feel like kids.
This show is presented every year between late November and the beginning of December.
In Italy there are magical days, when it starts to get cold, and children stay in their warm homes. It’s not Christmas, but the period that precedes it when the famous Zecchino d’oro TV show is broadcast. It has been broadcast every year, for decades. It was established in 1959 by Cino Tortorellawho was the good presenter who introduced the children on stage, disguised as Mago Zurlì.He was so loved by all children.
TheZecchino d’oro is the festival of the little ones. In fact, if the Sanremo Festival is aimed at adult audiences and the songs are interpreted by adults, the Zecchino d’oro is made for children, with songs tailored for children.
The songs may seem like simple songs but, they are actually much more. Special attention is given to the songs’ texts. The themes are about tolerance and peace. And this is confirmed by the expression of the event: “In this contest, the winner is not the child who sings, but the song that is sung!”
Father Berardo Rossi,one of the founders, discovered by chance, a girl who used to teach the children of his parish and organize events. Mariele Ventre,who was 22 years old, had just graduated from the Verdi Conservatory in Milan and was on her way to a promising concert career. She said yes to Fr. Rossi’s proposal and the adventure began. Mariele liked the name Zecchino because it refers to the gold coin in the field of miracles of Collodi’s Pinocchio and thus it was called Zecchino d’oro. She founded the Piccolo Coro two years later, an institution that she would direct passionately for thirty years, until the last day before she died on December 16, 1995. Upon her death the Piccolo Coro dell’Antoniano, was renamed Piccolo Coro for Mariele.
Zecchino d’oro, however, is not only music and entertainment, it has been carrying out voluntary initiatives by raising funds to build schools, hospitals, orphanages, with projects all over the world, to help the less fortunate live better lives.
In 2008, the Zecchino d’oro received an amazing recognition from UNESCO, becoming a world heritage for a culture of peace: the first TV show in the world to receive such a prestigious award.
This year the images were to be reassuring to Italy. The country had the strength to bet on good feelings and a strong idea of safeguarding children.
Though you may not know this show in America, we can relate one of the characters, Topo Gigio, the puppet created by Maria Perego. Topo Gigio landed in America many years ago on the legendary Ed Sullivan Show. For those of you who are not old enough to remember Topo Gigio, let me say we waited every week for his appearance on the show. For us kids and the adults he became a household name. Seems hard to believe that this little mouse stole the hearts of the American people.
So where does Gianlucafit into all of this? If it wasn’t for the Piccolo Choir of Roses and the Zecchino d’oro, Gianluca may not have been discovered.
Gianluca was a member of the Piccolo Choir of Roses which is one of the local branches of this choir. The Mago Zurlì, who was the presenter of the event when Gianluca was in the Choir, was Gianluca’s father, Ercole Ginoble.
But, let me let Gianluca tell you how this all came to be….
When I sing, I don’t forget instinct. What does that mean? As I said, I have never studied singing. I learned to “use” my voice only thanks to my musical ear. I listened to the music and it transmits everything I know. And I especially thank the Little Choir of Roses.
When I was about eight or nine, all those who knew my voice gave me the same advice: go sing in a choir. In Roseto there was the Piccolo Choir of Roses directed by the master Susy Paola Rizzo. They sang the songs of the “Zecchino d’oro” or other famous songs with arrangements in that style, with music for children. The Mago Zurlì, that was the presenter of the event, was my father. He had been for a couple of seasons.
This is where I started. It was nice because we studied the songs throughout the winter season, not the technique of singing, the songs. It was different, because we did not study the notes and how to do them, rather we studied instinctively, following what the teacher said and what our ear heard.
Then, in the summer, we demonstrated our work in the Municipality of Roseto. We sang in the squares during the local festivals, in the lidos, in the bathing establishments, around the whole of Abruzzo, all these tiny villages.
During the performances with the choir, besides the repertoire of the Zecchino d’oro, we sang the songs of Bocelli: Misere, Il Mare Calmo Della Sera, La Voce Del SilenzIo.
So, although Gianluca never studied music he did develop a musical ear and instinct and as a member of the Piccolo Choir of Roses and his performances around Abruzzo he was discovered by Licia Giunco who brought Gianluca to Rome to audition for Ti Lascio Una Canzone. The rest is history!
And as a result of this, Gianluca shares his amazing voice with people all over the world!
A post published by Maura Pucci made me remember this beautiful feat, made by four very tough women.
Unusual and … amazing aspects of Il Volo’s popularity.
THE NEW SANCTUARIES
We are in 2015.
Four American ladies, from different States, who met on social networks, animated by a great passion for IL VOLO and enthusiastic about the recent victory of the beloved group in Sanremo, decide to join together to undertake a trip to Italy.
Some new Il Volo fans might think: It’s not new! At their concerts in Verona and Taormina there are many fans from abroad and in particular Americans.
Today the Arena of Verona and the ancient theater of Taormina are places of great appeal for the fans of Il Volo from all over the world, who arrive there in droves, both to attend a concert in scenarios such as only Italy can offer, and to meet the virtual friends, frequented on Facebook.
But in the spring of 2015 things were still not exactly like that. And the four ladies embark on an Atlantic flight, for the ONLY purpose of visiting the places of residence of Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca, with the same spirit with which the romantic young people of Northern Europe, three or four centuries ago, left for the Grand Tour at vault of Italy, to be satisfied with beauty and culture, but at the same time with the same religiosity of those who want to embark on the journey of Santiago de Compostela.
Because, let’s face it, when it comes to doing this, it means that the three characters have already risen to the glory of the altars and that their places of life have become three new Sanctuaries, pilgrimage destinations …
Montepagano, Marsala and Naro, three small towns in the Italian province have become places of international resonance.
Okay, I just wanted to joke around.
But there are still many fans, especially Italian, but also foreigners, who go, or dream of going to Montepagano, favored by its proximity to Rome. And some of them even went as far as Naro.
Unfortunately, after five years, the sanctuary of Marsala today is not very frequent because S. Ignazio moved to Bologna.😂😂
When I read the news of this trip in 2015, I fully understood the attractive power of these extraordinary and unique guys.
That trip, was undertaken by Deborah Georgini Beaupre, Joan Brenin, Madeline Vitella and Maria Lagostini Leps.
In Italy, it was an event, it had never been heard that fans came to get to know the countries of their favorites. Also Sanremo had just ended with the victory and therefore, the local newspapers talked about this trip, here are the articles.
FROM AMERICA TO ROSETO, TO SEE THE PLACES OF GIANLUCA GINOBLE
(I translate for you.)
Saturday, May 16, 2015
“I crossed the Atlantic Ocean to see you” is film stuff. Indeed, no?
Because four American ladies have been stronger than exaggerated idioms, making something that even in the best dreams come true: they came from theUnited States of America to Roseto just to see the places whereGianluca Ginoble, a member of Il Volo, grew up, then headed straight to Sicily and do the same in the native places ofPiero Barone andIgnazio Boschetto.
The super fans are Maria Agostini Leps from Pennsylvania, Joan Brenin from Florida, Madeline Vitella from New Jersey and Deborah Georgini Beaupre from Texas, who say: “We met on Facebook in 2014, thanks to an article written by Maria after a concert by Il Volo. Having the same passion, we decided to meet and organize this trip to Italy, to see the places of our three darlings. It was enough for us to have the photo all together with the sign of the name of the three cities, but today a dream has come true.”
The dream was to meet Gianluca Ginoble and it became reality again thanks to Facebook, given that Maria wrote to Ercole, the father of the singer, saying of their presence in Roseto.
And since fate sometimes puts a good word on it, chance has meant that Gianluca was in Roseto in these days, before leaving again for the artistic and promotional commitments of Il Volo.
So, at five in the evening, on the Roseto seafront, the meeting of a thousand hugs and smiles, with selfies, dedications on records and photos.
Deborah shows a photo of the license plate of her car in Texas: “IL VOLO”, saying that after the death of her husband the songs of the group gave her strength.
Maria confesses that she returned to Italy after 50 years (she left at 9) for this. All four have seen many Il Volo concerts and love the three singers.
Gianluca Ginoble says: “It is such a great thing that I can only thank these splendid ladies, because in the face of such demonstrations of affection there is the risk of getting your head up.” (feeling overly important)
FROM AMERICA TO MARSALA, IN THE LAND OF IGNAZIO BOSCHETTO
They came from the USA to make their dream come true: to visit the places where the members of Il Volo, were born and raised.
In Marsala, in the city of Ignazio Boschetto, the first stop of the four American ladies was the visit to the representative office of the municipal administration which appointed the singer Ignazio “ambassador of Marsala in the world”.
The American ladies will leave tomorrow for Naro, the birthplace of Piero Barone; while in recent days they had already visited Roseto degli Abruzzi, the land of Gianluca Ginoble.
He, Piero and ours Ignazio, meanwhile, are already in Austria to participate in the Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna, where Il Volo is finalist by right with the winning song of Sanremo “Grande Amore”.
FROM AMERICA TO NARO, ON THE TRAIL OF PIERO BARONE FROM IL VOLO
The last stop on the Italian – Sicilian journey was Naro, the city of Piero Barone. Here too the reception of the girls from “Il Volo Naro Fan Club” was warm.
In the town hall the solemn ceremony with the mayor Lillo Cremona, the vice-mayor Lidia Mirabile and the mother of Piero, Eleonora Ognibene. Then a tour to discover the baroque of Naro and its monuments: the Castle, the old C athedral.
The Sicilian tour will end with a visit to the city of Agrigento and then to Taormina. Then the return to Rome for the US.
Admirable. They were the first, but then many others came.
I don’t think I would have had their courage, but I’m happy that they got what they wanted.
I bet that many of us would like to make this nice trip, and maybe be so lucky to be able to meet Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca ……… but sometimes dreams come true!
Ok, grab your second cup of coffee and settle in to read the last part of our trip, it’s really long! Enjoy! (please forgive any typos, grammar, etc. I am exhausted!) Dani, if you read this – please add anything I may have forgotten!)
Yes, as we neared the mountainous city of Montepagano, the skies were growing more menacing and then splat! splat! splat!! We had nowhere to go but up, and up, the narrow path they called a road. Those that have been there, know…. 🙂 On came the wiper blades and up the harrowing hill we went. Round and round she goes…. Lorna, bravely traversing the road, put the SUV in gear and safely navigated us up the rainy road. The rain came down harder and harder and it was difficult to see at times. To one side of us there was the bit of road, to the other, a 50 foot drop! There really was no shoulder to go on. Over too far and it was ciao, ciao, ciao! The scariest part was when another car was coming from the other direction and they thought they were the only car on the road. There was scarcely enough room for another car to pass. We finally made it up the hill, holding our breath with each curve. At one point, we finally reached some level ground and a bit of a clearing. The rain was coming down even harder, so Lorna pulled off for about five or ten minutes until the rain finally let up a bit. We looked around, and not sure how we did it, but we actually passed Montepagano! Like, there was more than one town on this little mountain? So, we saw a sign that literally said “Montepagano” with an arrow pointing to where we had already come. Lucky for us, the rain had almost stopped and was now just a light sprinkle. We made our way back down the treacherous path and followed the signs to Montepagano.
The streets were actually pretty deserted of people, but there were several cars parked. It was a Wednesday, so maybe people were at work and it was also raining. The rain had pretty much come to a stop, as the ancient cobblestones glistened with the dampness. We were not sure where to go from there, but we followed Dani, with phones/cameras in hand. We marveled at the beautiful buildings and architecture, of how it has withstood the time and the weather. We passed the famous clock tower on the way and ended up in the center of town. As we got closer to the little café, we noticed a huge banner across with Gian and some words from L’amore Si Muove, although it really wasn’t registering with me yet. We kind of recognized some of the words, but it still wasn’t clicking. Dani told us that this was the place Gianluca’s nonno owned at one time. There were a few gentlemen outside at a table, even though it was still pretty wet. Since it was still slightly sprinkling, we decided to go in. It was not very big, but they sold espressos, I think some gelato and we saw a sign for Nuttella crepes!! Surely, in honor of their most famous resident, Gianluca!! So, of course, we had to try some Nuttella crepes and espresso. I think Dani just had some espresso and we enjoyed our crepes. I looked out the small window and saw a sign that said San Spirito. Hmmm….
We finished our crepes and went outside. Where to next? We asked Dani if she could find where Gianluca or the Ginobles lived? So, she just looked them up on her phone in the Italian White Pages. Well, of course – where else would they be? She found the address was on San Spirito. We wondered where that was. Wait, that was the sign I saw looking through the window at the café! I felt like we were in a mystery and had to solve the clues.
We went down and over a few streets, and sure enough, we found it. We kept walking down to where his address was, but it had a different name on it. Maybe for us fans, they had different names, so they wouldn’t be bothered! So, we kept walking, and around another corner, Dani pointed out where nonno lived. Even though the skies were cloudy, it was kind of nice and still very beautiful. As we walked, Dani was pointing out the famous landmarks and then she said, “you know, this is where they filmed part of the video for L’amore Si Muove!” Of course!! Now things were looking familiar and THAT’s why they had that big banner with the words from the song on it! Well, after we realized that Dani brought the video up on her phone and we traipsed around, trying to find all the places we could, in the video.
We found the domed church, and made it up the hill to the famous bench. We walked along around the edge of the town, facing the sea, wondering which window Leonora took her lovely sunrise and evening pictures from. I think I took more pictures in Montepagano than anywhere else besides the Florence concert. It was so beautiful. We certainly know why Gianluca loves it so! Up and down we went, over the cobblestone paths. It was amazing that people can actually get cars down there. One or two actually passed us. It didn’t seem much wider than a few sidewalks put together. We remembered the one photo in the video where Ignazio is leaning against the wall of a building and the tower and lamppost are looming in the distance. We tried and tried to find just the right spot and tried to get a photo of me imitating him on the wall. After almost half an hour, it seemed, we decided it was nearly impossible to find the right spot, even after we tried to do a screenshot and enlarge the picture. I finally decided the video may have been edited over later because we could never seem to get the right angle. We even tried a few different streets!
It was starting to get late and we had been there for several hours by then, so we thought we should be getting back home. As we rounded the few more blocks and got back to the main part of the little town, Dani pointed out to us a taxi. Out of the taxi, came Ercole and Alessio! No, we did not take pictures as not to appear to be too nosy… Ercole got out and went over to a big, black Volvo SUV, got in and drove away. We decided they were just coming back from dropping Gianluca at the airport. That was the day they were on their way to Mexico, to make up the concert that had gotten cancelled previously due to the hurricanes back in April or May? Ok, that was exciting to see them – so unexpected. No, we didn’t run into the family, or nonno, or anyone else – we weren’t quite as lucky as Jeannette or Jane and Marie, but it was still fun. It was this magical little adventure in this incredible small town, almost like a fairy tale, that no one had touched in hundreds of years.
We decided to make our way back to our car, we were pretty exhausted by then. And what to our wondering eyes did appear? O sole mio! Yes, as we were leaving, the sun decided to come out! I snapped a few more pictures under sunny skies and Lorna decided she wanted a picture under the “welcome to Montepagano” sign. So we both took our pictures under the signs. We waved arrivederci as we drove on out of the city. I guess we were actually pretty lucky it was cloudy most of the time we were there, as it was starting to warm up pretty quickly in the short time the sun was out.
The ride down did not seem as scary in the sunshine, although the road was still pretty narrow. It seems we took the back way down. We got down to the main road and turned right. Our Montepagano adventure was over. We made our way back through the several round-abouts – they didn’t seem so bad in Italy…. I hate the ones here! We passed a mall on the way and we asked Dani if we could go there. We wanted to pick up a few things. Inside the mall was a store like a Target or Walmart that had just about everything from food to clothes. We picked up a few things and I got a few boxes of biscotti made in Abruzzo and we got some really cheap Moscato – a whole 3 euros! We dropped off Dani and then we realized we forgot to give her her CDs.
I wanted to go by the sea again, but we never made it. We texted Dani that we were coming back. Not many of you may know this, but Dani’s family has an olive oil factory, called Corneli. How awesome is that? We kept trying to ask her to buy some olive oil to take back with us, but she never let us! However, when we went back to give her the CDs, she came out with two very special bottles of lemon infused olive oil!! OMG! We were so surprised and tickled! I admit, I had never had lemon olive oil before. I could not wait to go home and try it on my salad! We thanked her and hugged goodbye.
We made it back to our hotel. We were pretty tired and we had to get up fairly early again, as we had to have the car back to Rome by 10:00am. Lorna wasn’t really hungry, so our dinner consisted of Moscato, biscotti, and M&Ms that I had brought – they were the pretzel ones that I love! I gave a bag of them to Dani, as well! 🙂 The Moscato was pretty good, too!
Again, we got up early and this time I was up before the sunrise to get ready and leave. We had packed the night before and we were going to take showers in the morning. However, sleep won out and we decided to skip the shower. We went downstairs to pay the bill. Unfortunately, Italians do not believe in eating breakfast early, so once again, we missed breakfast! The only hotels we managed to have breakfast in was the first one!
Part Two – All Roads Lead to Rome (or so they say….)
We had to get some gas and Dani had pointed out to us a self-serve place for us to go in the morning. Ok, we got there shortly after 7a and it was pretty deserted. We found the pump and even the somewhat English directions. Ok, how hard could this be? After several attempts, we were ready to give up. We got as far as putting in our card, after we figured out it only took MasterCard, but couldn’t figure out where to put how many gallons or money that we wanted.
I spotted a guy a few pumps over and I told Lorna to move to a different one and I was going to go over and ask him. Now this was brave – lol! He looked to be middle-aged, and hopefully a nice guy. I went over to him and asked him, in English, very slowly, if he spoke English. He said, “no!” I said, “little bit?” He said, si. He was pumping his gas and I was all excited that he understood some English. I looked at the pump, looked at him, and gestured with my hands a “how to” expression and said, “come?” I guess I was being a bit anxious and he almost shouts, “aspettero!” Huh, what? Oh, “wait!” Ok. 🙂 Ah, we can thank Il Volo for their song “Aspettero!” – I knew what he meant! I shut up and waited until he was done. When he was finished, he walked over to us and showed us how to pump the gas. We thanked him politely and we were soon on our way again – about 30 minutes later!! So much for stopping for breakfast anywhere. We did take a bit of a snack type of cake from the hotel to eat, as that was all they had sitting out so early when we left. But not even any coffee!
We left Silvi and Montepagano and tearfully said goodbye…this was it, our final leg of our tour of Italy. All we had left was Rome and then, home from there. It was a beautiful and sunny day. A gorgeous ride on the highway. Lorna and I were amazed at how little traffic there really seemed to be. But we quickly found out that all the traffic was in Rome! Lol!
We made our way down the lonesome road, passing the beautiful Apenine mountains and low-hanging clouds, amid the blue sunny skies. The traffic picked up a bit as we neared Rome. We didn’t seem to get much gas at that gas station, so we stopped at a roadside little pit stop. That, I have to say was the coolest thing ever! Wish we had those at home. You literally just pulled off to the side of the road, they filled your tank and you were on your merry way! Which is what we did – almost! (ok, this was over a year ago, so we can laugh about it now. I was not even going to put this in there, but it makes for an interesting ending to our adventure!)
As many of you know and I had mentioned, Roma traffic is crazy! There are two lanes, but three lanes of traffic! We were kind of on a boulevard street and trying to get back into traffic. It was awful… we went a little ways and we were still on the right side of the road. As Lorna was inching nearer the street, the closer and closer the edge of the back of the truck came to our vehicle! Of course, it was on my side – I’ve been in accidents before and knew the awful anxiety and anticipation of knowing at any second your vehicle was going to collide with something else! “You’re going to hit the truck, you’re going to hit the truck!” I screamed, or I thought I did? Sure enough, rr-iii-pp, screech, crack! Oh no! First thing I said, “you got the insurance, right” “Yep,” she said. Ok, whew! 🙂 I was afraid to get out of the car. I got out and looked. What we collided with was the – not sure how to describe this, but the truck was a medium-sized delivery type truck with the elevator type mechanism that would go up and down and we hit like the side bracket of it. It tore a slit into the front quarter panel of the SUV just like it was opening up a zipper. Looked pretty bad, but car was still drivable, thank goodness!
Quickly, two screaming Italian men came out after hearing the noise. We could not understand them, but we got the meaning! lol! We waved the car rental papers and said we were Americans. There was, of course, no damage to their truck, so thankfully, they just shook their heads and waved us on. Ok, we were a bit stressed out by then. We had nearly made it back without a scratch and now this! Ok, Lorna had the insurance, so we should be ok. We were just a few miles away from the parking garage. It was just about 10:00am by now. We should be ok.
We managed to somehow find the parking garage – thanks again to Google maps. I still want to send them a note one day and tell them they saved our behinds many times while in Italy!! Anyhow – we were in the final stretch. Up the levels we went – almost as harrowing as the road up to Montepagano, but at least it wasn’t raining. However, these were hairpin turns getting level to level. We had just made it up to the fifth level and had just made it around the final turn – almost! What happened next you ask? Well….how about – SCREECH and CRUNCH! You are thinking, “No….!” Oh, YES!! Lorna was driving very slowly and carefully, but it was just that final turn she misjudged a bit. Luckily, or unluckily, the guys that were from our rental place saw it happen! Lorna tried to back up, which started the scraping sound again. On my side again, also!!
Quickly, the guys run over to her and yell “stop, stop!! We will take it from here!” Oh boy – so, I stayed in the car, while the guy jumped in and expertly backed out and maneuvered the car around the corner to safety. He parked and I got out, and went to meet Lorna and gather the bags. I was truly afraid to look. It looked positively awful. The zipper rip in the front quarter panel was nothing compared to the almost completely scraped side of the vehicle. As I think about it now, I was lucky I could get out of the door. I took one look at the car, and it must have been out of sheer nerves and stress, but I burst out laughing! This was no laughing matter, but I could not control my obvious hysteria.
I was losing track of time by then, but nearly an hour later, it seemed, we were finally out of there and walking back to the train station. We were starved and I remembered a McDonald’s was near there. It was shortly after noon by then and McDonald’s was packed! We managed to find 2 stools open in the bar-like area. I left Lorna with the bags and went to get in line for lunch. We had booked the tour to see the Basilica and were supposed to be by the steps of them by about 1:30p/1:45p. It was nearly 1p by then. We tried to get Uber to take us to our hotel, unfortunately this time, the driver spoke no English and we never connected. Lorna asked where the hotel was and I had no idea. We looked it up and realized we were within walking distance. Ok, good thing for us! So, we walked the few blocks.
When we got there, we encountered the only screw-up I had through the whole trip! Somehow I had booked the previous night for the hotel! Oh no, we were so tired and exhausted by this point. “Do you have a room?” Luckily, they did. Awesome! She said it’s on the 6th floor and oh so pretty, but the elevator only goes to the 5th floor, so we would have to take our luggage up the stairs. “No, no more stairs. You have to find us something else.” I think she found us the smallest room they had, but it was on the 2nd floor, so we took it. This was the tiniest room ever. As I look at it now, I don’t think it was much bigger than my current bedroom! It barely fit a double bed and dresser. The bathroom was around the corner and not much bigger than a closet. We both flopped on the bed in sheer exhaustion! It had to be the worst and lumpiest bed ever! I looked at the clock, about 1:15p, and I looked at her. The tour was pre-paid, but I said, “I’m ok with skipping the Basilica, if you are.” She agreed and we collapsed on the bed for a long nap!
As we lay on the bed, I remember calling Marie, almost in tears and said, “I want to come home!” We had been through Rome twice and never saw any of it! And not because we had a bad trip, it was incredible, but that last day just did us in. After about a 2 -3 hour nap, we woke up and decided we should at least go and find dinner somewhere. After walking up and down our street where the hotel was, we decided it probably wasn’t the greatest of neighborhoods, so we ended up eating at this almost, only restaurant, across the street from our hotel. Lorna had a pizza and I had the special which was 3 courses and dessert. We each had a glass of wine. I had pasta, and then chicken and roasted potatoes. It was pretty good.
We went back to our room and got ready for bed. I think I took my shower that night. As we got ready for bed, we realized we both left some of our bathroom items in Silvi! I also left my one and only sweater! We both decided it must mean we have to go back one day to get them. 🙂
The bathroom – as you can tell from pictures, I’m not a small person. Lorna is about half my size! However, the tiny corner shower stall was so small, I literally had to go in sideways to get in and then I had to squeeze this body in. Ok, the pasta, pizza, and gelato, must have caught up with me! But Lorna agreed, it was a pretty tight fit, even for her.
We checked out and the hotel called us a cab to the airport. We safely got to the airport and looked around at the passing scenery as much as we could, as that was all we would see of Rome…
After we checked in, we had breakfast. We then stopped in an Armani store – they were having a sale. Ha, ha! We managed to find a sale corner and Lorna bought me a souvenir t-shirt that said Armani on, similar to one Ignazio wore. She bought one for herself as well. It was the biggest one they had and it “almost” fit. Let’s just say I won’t be wearing it in public for a really long time!
It was time to board….we happily thought of the guys, every time they said “il volo” and smiled. Arrivederci, Roma! It was a long flight and thankfully, uneventful. We arrived on time and made it easily through customs and found our bags in the baggage area, just the other side of customs. We could have had the guys in our luggage and they never would have known. They just asked what we brought back and I said souvenirs. Ok, would have been 3 very large souvenirs, but definitely souvenirs, wouldn’t you say? 🙂
Ah, home, at last! Ginny picked us up from the airport and then dropped Lorna off. She came by my place a little while later, but I felt bad because I think I fell asleep! We were pretty tired.
We came back on Saturday, so I had one day to recover before going back to work on Monday.
We just had a day to celebrate Ignazio’s amazing accomplishment –being named in the annals of “Memory” alums for his contribution to that song’s history (Yay!) Today, we recap last week’s celebrations in Gianluca’s honor.
In an email from Mary B., she summarized it all very succinctly with a few interesting items of history as well:
“Recently Gianluca experienced what the Abruzzo newspaper, The Messenger, described as “a week of fire.” First the young Rosetan was named, “Ambassador of Abruzzo 2015” by the city of Roseto. The award for this honor was a statue depicting the warrior Capistrano, a well known historical figure. The original statue was found buried in the soil by a farmer while working in his field, and is now on display in the National Archaeological Museum of the Abruzzi in Chieti.
Gianluca was also given an award by the publishers of the Eldos News, who named him “World Ambassador of the city of Roseto degli Abruzzo.” This award was a plaque in gold and silver made by the prominent goldsmith, Roberto Talamonti. Piero and Ignazio were also included in this event, being named Honorary Citizens of Roseto and receiving awards printed on parchment and roses made of silver.”
Enjoy the photos/videos/articles below, and since all good things come in threes, I’m going to guess that there will be another reason to celebrate the amazing guys soon! 😉