The prancing horse meets the proud ox…in the Sassi with Ferrari

How small is the world. And life, as you know, is made of coincidences. Common places, according to some. But often they tell everyday reality.

A few days ago I was taking in a guided tour trough the Sassi a group from Modena: thirty sprightly pensioners on a trip here. With some prejuidice, actually: “A kind of Rione Sanità ofNaples”, a lady says; “Yes, the impression is that it is a bit ‘ruined everything”, her husband confirms. But actually they had not seen anything yet and probably were still tired for the journey by coach that had brought them here to Matera directly from Emilia, departing at dawn; and then the hearty lunch in a local restaurant of  Sasso Barisano had done the rest.

But it tooks only fifteen minutes, just to tell them something and show the first glimpses, that skepticism was immediately turned into enchantment. And this time the comments were stuck in the throat for the emotion: wide eyes, open mouths, faces lit with wonder … That suddenly, however, seemed to become “normal” surprise. In short, the were looking dazed. We were going down the stairs of Via Muro, with the amazing view of the caves over Murgia Timone in front, the rock church of Santa Maria de Idris on the right and the Sasso Caveoso all around with Piazza S.Pietro Caveoso down below. But that day it looked very different than usual: the dazzling white of historic natural stone was in fact almost completely covered by the…Ferrari red!

Ferrari in Piazza S.Pietro Caveoso in the Sassi

Yes, thirty cars of glorious Maranello company (a little village in the province of Modena) were there at the center of the square. “I knew you were coming from those surroundings and I had prepared this surprise especially for you.” They laughed at the joke, but then I was not able to hide my surprise for this unusual sight. And as we descended and approached the flaming “reds”, I realized inside of me that in that moment the millenial history of Matera and the secular one of Ferrari met. And they were perfectly well together! So I imagined the encounter between the proud ox symbol of my town and the prancing horse of Maranello, right when a tour guide of Matera was accompanying a group of tourists from Modena.

Yes, the world is really small. And often you can meet it all in Matera.

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