Outside Guagnano

I leave for America in three weeks, to live there for the foreseeable future. So for the next 21 days I’m writing down one memory per day of my time living in Europe. As a writing exercise but also as a way to test my brain. You can read them all here.

Day 6 | Italy, August 2014

We’re in southern Italy. right in the western-most part, near Lecce outside a small village called Guagnano. It’s July and the heat feels like a ton of bricks.

The ride from Brindisi airport took us through deserted towns, endless olive groves and the remnants of dying industry. The ghosts of an agricultural economy that may never be again feel like they’re everywhere.

The villa we’re staying at is a few kilometres from Guagnano, in the heart of the countryside. There’s not a cloud in the sky. If you look up it feels like the land goes on forever. Flat. Endless. Houses dot the horizon. Crickets blare.

I’m with my friend Zach, tour managing him for the month. Mainly festivals considering the season. This one is a local affair, the front of the villa with its olive grove on one side and vineyard on the other will become the festival site a few hours later, a giant soundsystem blaring into the early morning for hundreds of party people and some slightly bemused elders.

It’s quiet now though. I’m trying to find out what’s going to happen and when. I know it’s probably too much to ask considering where we are, but I feel the need to know. It comes with the job.

The promoters look at me. And then Paolo, Zach’s Italian booker who joined us for the trip, looks at me and says “there is no time here. Only space.” Deadpan delivery.

It’s funny cos it’s true. Trying to hurry things in southern Italy is pointless.

I go back to the pool and lounge for the afternoon.

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.