Sehnsucht – I start again to reach new goals.

I studied German for many years. It is a language that I love and love to talk about, and that introduced me to a special word that explains the choice I am about to make: the word Sehnsucht.

There are those who mistakenly translate it with nostalgia; but the Sehnsucht is much more. Nostalgia in German translates as Nostalgie, a word that expresses the desire to regain possession of something known in the past (a place, an object, a sensation); the Sehnsucht, on the other hand, is a sentiment similar to nostalgia, but tied to something that is not yet known. It is the search for something unknown, undefined; a desire that drives those who try it to constantly try to fill the void they feel. Those who try it are not satisfied with what they have and constantly try to reach new goals that they hope can appease this sentiment.

I try Sehnsucht. Since many years. And so now I start again to reach new goals.

Currently I am the luckiest person in the world: I am healthy, my loved ones are healthy, they are all alive, my house is still accessible after the earthquake, I have love, I have friends, I have a good job as a freelance, which I love and that allows me to work more or less where I want and at the pace that I decide. At a time like this, in Italy, I’m really the luckiest person of all.
Yet the Sehnsucht remains. It is like in The Conrad shadow line: the calmness, the calm is for the sailor despair. Or as Baudelaire said in The Flowers of Evil:

calme plat, grand miroir de mon désespoir
So I decided not to stay here complaining and feeling that I’m not satisfied. I’m leaving.

I spent too many months (years) here in Italy complaining about Trenitalia, Berlusconi, politics, bureaucracy, television, the mafia, our innate tendency to cheat our neighbor, our inability to better manage this rich country of opportunities, and … of our incredible skill to complain.

I tried every day, in my small way, to change things: from recycling to signing, to volunteering … but nothing changes here, and the Sehnsucht remains.

That is why I will leave Italy by 31 December 2012. I have already notified all my clients, I have already told my family and some friends, and I have already started the visa procedures.

In February, in the place where I will go, I will start a course on wildlife management: I am tired of the Italian social media clients, I am tired of reading sterile and provincial controversies on blog trips, I am tired of klout envy. I’m sure the earthquake gave me a good boost (in every sense): in the days of the shocks, at work the “problem” of my clients was to “urgently” put a post on Facebook with the last “unmissable” ”Offer 3 × 2, while at home my real problem was helping my grandmother with Parkinson pee in the garden, because you could not enter the house.

When you live these dichotomies you start to wonder what real life is; and you understand it. Minus 3 × 2, plus garden.

My dream is, in a year’s time, to work in a wildlife center, in a country where parrots fly in the sky, where it is normal to separate waste, where it is considered strange to throw cigarette butts from the window, where the premier she is a woman, where there are no showgirls on TV, where passers-by smile at you on the street and where those who want to work in environmental protection is not a volunteer freak, but is considered a person who defends the planet and is paid for it.

No, it is not paradise: it is Australia.

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